Ahhhh….useless stuff that is stored somewhere in the attic, garage or basement that we usually don’t worry about much until we decide to move. Throw it out! It may be hard at first, but you’ll find it liberating and soon easy to do. I know this may seem cold and harsh, but If something has been in a box since your last move and you haven’t missed it, throw it out.
The same can be said for useless words in anything that is trying to sell something. If you have no clue what a word means or where it came from or why it is being use, it’s probably useless to anyone and everyone who reads it. There is nothing worse than reading a line of copy in any marketing piece and not understanding the words or language because of technical jargon. Don’t talk down to your target audience, instead speak their language! Messages are most easily understood with simple copy that talks about benefits instead of features.
Useless and meaningless words like “new”, “free”, “guarantee”, and “limited time offer” are overused advertising gimmicks that are simply no longer effective if used improperly. For example, if you are giving away something for “free” it had better be useful and valuable and FREE! A truly free giveaway of any kind that has value will add credibility to your business. If your free giveaway is nothing more than pure self promotion, you’ll turn off a potential customer and they will lose faith in the credibility of your business. Follow through on your promise of “free” because customers don’t appreciate being lied to or deceived.
If you have ever watched anyone read, you know they mostly skim content. Especially if it is online or on any outdoor advertisement. Have you ever driven by a billboard or sign that had too much information to read while you are traveling 55 MPH or more? A general rule in any outdoor advertising is to use no more than 8 words that can be read easily and in seconds.
If an advertising message is hard to read and contains too many words, the viewer will ignore the information all together. Ask yourself if your marketing message communicates simply and effectively to your target audience within seconds. While it is true that content is king, simplicity is the key to clear communication.