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27 September 2018

14 Words To Ban (or avoid…) & Ones To Use Instead!

Connecting with your audiences through language is key. It can inspire them to take desired actions, open emails or even make a purchase. Words have the ability to motivate but can also work as red flags for things to avoid. Therefore, we’ve compiled a list of marketing words you should BAN or avoid and one’s you should be using instead!

Remember, just because a word works for a certain campaign does not mean it will work for another. Always test and measure your words to narrow down which ones resonate with your audience.

1. Cost or Price

Even used in a positive frame ‘low price’ or ‘awesome cost’ – these words still heavily imply losing something. In this case, money.

instead use…

14 Words To Ban


Focus on the value they’re receiving in their purchase – not what they’re losing!

2. Unique

Unless your product or service is truly unique to the market (in this case, tell your audience how it is) don’t use unique. Everyone is ‘unique’, so really, it makes you generic.

instead use…

exclusive sign


Putting an air of exclusivity around your product or service is likely to increase curiosity and drive interest to prospective customers.

3. Friendly Service

You don’t get a medal for giving friendly service – that should be a given! Customers will assume all businesses are friendly, use another term that makes your service different than others.

instead use…

people in florist buying flowers

‘Personalised/Tailored Service’

Offer personalised/tailored service! Don’t categorise a customer’s problem and solve it with a generic solution. Tailor your service to directly solve their problem.

4. Expert

If I’m a customer looking for someone to solve my problem, I can assume all businesses are experts in their industry. Even if they weren’t, businesses could easily fib and say they’re ‘experts’.

instead use…



Much like your service, customers want to know you will listen to their problem and not assume it’s a generic issue. Show your customers you’re there to serve them, listen to their problem and provide a personalised solution.

5. Best

Of course you think your business is the best, it’s yours! While this could be true, all your competitors are saying it too.

instead use…

‘Proven Results’

So you want to show your business is the best? That’s great! Let’s show them the results you’ve given satisfied customers. Results can’t be falsified or wrong when they’re coming from previous customers.

6. Hurry!

This goes for all ‘rush based’ buzz words like, NOW, or MOVE FAST. Customers don’t always like being told what to do – your product/service should be that appealing that you only need to offer them it, create scarcity and they will buy.

instead use…

‘Take Advantage’

While this is still telling customers what to do – it isn’t a ‘rush based’ buzz word. It’s offering your product or service and advising customers. Take connotes the product/service may not be around for much longer. Advantage implies your product or service will affect their lives positively.

7. Honest

As opposed to being…deceitful? Implying that your business’ service is honest, is a waste of time. Being honest should be a no-brainer with your service.

instead use…


Customers like a straight-forward, no beating-around-the-bush approach. They’ll give you their problem, you’ll give them a personalised solution – straight up.

8. Obviously

I don’t know about you, but if a business uses the world obviously – it makes me feel stupid for not knowing something I’m apparently already meant to know?


Don’t Use It!

Sometimes, things are better left unsaid altogether. Assume your customer knows nothing about your product or service – so ‘obviously’ won’t need to be used.

9. Cheap

Don’t devalue or cheapen your product or service, this word turns more people away than it does bring them in.

instead use…

valuable banner


Your service is worth it, the price is reasonable and your customers will see that it’s valuable!

10. Miracle

This is tricky territory, unless your product is actually ‘a miracle’ don’t oversell it.

instead use…

best seller icon

‘Best Seller’

If you really want to brag about your product/service – make it about the social proof you have from others that have bought your product/service.

11. Hassle-Free

This one seems positive right? Wrong! It’s still associating your brand with the word ‘hassle’.

instead use…


Go with the easy route on this one!

12. 110%

It’s an irritating, impossible cliche, no one can actually give you 110%.


Don’t Use It!

You should be giving 100% to all of your customers.

13. Try

You want to instill confidence and encouragement in your client. Using the word ‘try’ sounds like you will make an attempt, but there’s no guaranteed outcome!

instead use…


You will solve their problem and find a solution. It’s not about making false promises, it’s about ensuring your client your business has the goods and will deliver!

14. Overuse of ‘We’

Too much of you in your marketing copy won’t win over customers – it’s about them!

instead use…


Focus on their pain points, shift your focus to be entirely on them. Win your customers over by showcasing the value in your product/service.

Always keep your language focused on your audience and easy to read. Attempting to or using words to appear smart or educated can turn customers off. Fun fact, majority of news stations make their news copy a fifth-grade reading level – that’s right!

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