Make Every Word Count

I was listening to a webinar last week, and the presenter mentioned an interesting statistic that caught my attention. He had run an ad with two headlines (known as an A/B Test) to see which one was most successful. The first headline was:

Put More Money in Your Pocket!

And the second was:

Puts More Money in Your Pocket!

The second headline was 76% more successful in closing sales than the first one.

You may be thinking, “But they’re the same except for one letter!” And you would be right. But, oh! What a difference one character can make! The difference was in meaning and interpretation.

In the first headline, the reader is asked to do the work to “put more money” in their pocket. In the second headline, the work is done for the reader. The thing being sold is doing the work for you. That is far more appealing than having to do the work yourself.

The Devil’s in the Details, Too

Minor language tweaks also affect the impact of our words when we’re out networking, using our voices as marketing tools. Here are two subtle differences in delivery that can drastically alter the impression you make and response you receive. For example, after introductions, your conversation partner starts this way:

“I need clients who….”

…as opposed to:

“Who do you know who needs…”

In the first example’s language I react by clenching up and wanting to hide. Why? Because I’ve just been put on the spot. Even if the person didn’t truly mean for me to deliver a handful of clients the request feels like it’s a demand — regardless of how kindly the other person may be delivering the request. The “demand” puts me off. I don’t like being put on the spot.

The second phrasing puts me at ease. I’m off the hot seat. Suddenly I’m an asset with an assignment. I must be valuable because s/he is asking me about my friends and colleagues. I have an entirely different feeling reacting to these words. Iwant to help this person get what s/he needs and will eagerly review my memory to see whom might fit the parameters given.

Minding the details in all the words you use to market your business, whether they appear on the page, on the screen or tumble out of your mouth, can boost your success considerably. Choose your words wisely.