Yes, sometimes I’m a grouchy old lady – but I think I can safely assume that I’m not alone.
Some words used in marketing – both in sales promotions and in content marketing – are so irritating to me that I delete the messages without reading them.
A phrase that’s been around for quite a while is “Crush the competition,” joined by “Crush ‘em!”
For one thing, we should all be striving to outshine our competition, not “crush” them. Our mission should be to help people achieve their goals - not to hurt someone.
I’m sure part of my hang-up stems from a seminar presentation given by a marketer that I find offensive. He made marketing sound like going into battle – with stealth techniques. Those techniques were to be used not only on the competition – but on unsuspecting consumers who could be tricked into buying products. I don’t hear much about him any more – perhaps it backfired.
The over-used word that annoys me lately is “hacks.” I don’t know why, but the word is offensive to me. Perhaps because I think of “hacking” as a negative activity regarding websites, email, and databases. I do NOT want to be hacked!
Meanwhile… Everywhere you look someone is offering life hacks, marketing hacks, money hacks, cooking hacks, cleaning hacks, and on and on.
If I see that word in a subject line I delete the message – no questions asked.
I’m really not a fan of “political correctness” – and I think far too many people are just looking for something to whine about. You can tell me “blonde jokes” all day and I promise to laugh, not scream.
At the same time, as marketers I think we all need to be careful about the words we choose.
Think about the words or phrases that annoy you – and assume that your prospects probably have some of the same prejudices.
How else can you get your message quickly deleted?
With a pop-up or a slide-in that won’t go away.
This morning an email promised 40 content tips for better marketing. That sounded interesting, so I attempted to read it. Nope – not unless I signed up to download something or other. The slide-in covered most of the screen, so trying to read around it would have been annoying – and no matter how many times I clicked that little X it wouldn’t go away. Good bye website.
With content that doesn’t deliver on the subject line’s promise.
I’ve come across two or three of those lately. The subject line offered specific information, but the headline and lead-in on the page were on a completely different subject.
Maybe they were going to get to the information later – or maybe it was an error. I don’t know, because I left.
With a message that makes no sense.
You may have gotten this one lately. Someone writes with an offer to “cooperate.” Then the message goes on to say that they’ve read several different blog posts and think that we’d work well together. The blog posts they cite aren’t mine, so what the heck are they talking about?
When I delete those messages, I get follow-up messages, asking me why I haven’t yet responded. Perhaps I should write back, but that might also be a mistake. So I’ll continue to delete.
Image courtesy of freedooom @freedigitalphotos.net