Humans may have split the atom, landed on the moon and made scintillating art at the fiery intersection of mortality and consciousness, but sometimes we’re not that complicated.
We want more pleasure and less pain.
This means we can’t help but react to some words more than others. When you know this, you know a lot about selling.
The words you use to talk about your product – in your headlines, catalogue, product descriptions, newsletters, blog posts and everywhere else – aren’t neutral bystanders. They can stack the odds in your favour.
Or, if you choose poorly, they can do bunny ears behind your back.
How do you get the powerful ones on your side?
The first step is simply knowing what some of them are and that’s where this list comes in. It’s not exhaustive but it’s designed to get you thinking along the right lines when writing product descriptions, headline, newsletters and your wholesale catalogue.
Here are a few tips for best results.
1. You sell luxury.
If you make a lovely thing, you’re in the luxury business. Your work doesn’t have to be dipped in gold and sprinkled with gourmet salt flakes for this to be true.
Whatever you make, there are hundreds of thousands of vendors similar selling things.
But yours is handcrafted, small batch or otherwise created by artisanal means. That’s why it costs more. That’s what sets it apart.
Buyers can purchase the same type of item off Amazon in less than 20 seconds. It wouldn’t be as good as yours in a variety of ways, but they could buy a silver necklace or a cinnamon candle or fingerless gloves in less time than it takes to boil a kettle.
Crucially, however, if they’re on your website, reading your words, they’re NOT on Amazon.
If you’ve grabbed their attention they’re looking for something different from this purchase. For whatever reason, they care more about things like quality and craftsmanship than they do about holding onto their money – on this occasion, at least.
In other words, they want luxury.
So give it to them.
Even if the conventional trappings of luxury goods – the big shiny gift boxes and satin ribbons – couldn’t be more removed from what you offer.
Even if your stuff isn’t “expensive.”
When you talk about your work, make sure to use words that evoke the specialness, sophistication, rarity and exclusivity of luxury.
2. Sensory words are your allies.
Certain words get the sensory part of our brains firing.
Want to know the most powerful word a restaurant can use on a menu?
When a dish is described as crispy, people all over the world consistently order it in droves. Our brains find it irresistible.
Get the powerful imaginative engine that lives in the human head working for you by using sensory words – creamy, sparkly, minty, velvety – whenever you can.
3. Talk about what your work isn’t.
Maybe some body lotions are thin and watery while yours are whipped and rich.
Maybe some candles smell waxy or smoky while your scents are huggable, lively and toasty-warm.
Use contrasting words to paint a picture.
4. Find your sweet spot.
When presented with hundreds of glitteringly powerful words, it can be difficult not to go full magpie and use them all at once.
Actually, that’s a good exercise.
Choose a product from your collection and dive headlong into the list below. Pick dozens to describe your work. Don’t hold back. But when it comes to writing the final version of the words on your website, look for your personal sweet spot.
Use too many sensory and selling words and you’ll come across like a Romantic poet crossed with a QVC presenter.
Use too few and your descriptions are likely to feel flat and boring. Season your writing with powerful words in the same way you season dishes when you cook.
No-one likes an oversalted headline.
Filled to the Brim
Crammed full of
Colour & Light Words
Texture & Feel Words
Taste & Smell Words
Bathes you in…
All day comfort
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