I was reminded of this important statement the other day when I read an article in Radio Ink penned by Larry Rosin, President of Edison Research. Larry’s article was titled “Stop Saying ‘Still’” and you can read it HERE
The point of Larry’s article was when by using the single word, still, in telling radio’s story, we in essence are devaluing the medium.
Weak: Radio is still what people listen to in their cars.
It automatically makes the mind wonder, what else people are listening to in their cars. Or if radio was still important in the car, why do we have to remind anyone of this fact.
Larry did an excellent job of showing how by eliminating the word “still” in that sentence how much more powerful it becomes.
Strong: Radio is what people listen to in their cars.
I Think Versus I Know
When making a sales presentation, one of the phrases I worked to have my students at the university eliminate was “I think this will work.”
When you use the word “think,” the advertiser assumes, that if you don’t know if it will work, s/he’s not going to waste their money trying to find out.
But if you instead say, “I KNOW this will work,” the advertiser will draw confidence from your words that this is something they should be doing.
Transference of Confidence
Sales is the transference of confidence.
If you’re confident in the program you’ve put together for your client, use words that transfer your confidence to your client.
“Think” doesn’t transfer confidence, “know” does.
It’s much the same thing that Larry Rosin talked about in using the word “still” to describe radio’s attributes in the sales process.
Words That Influence
In the world of sales, some words have real “magic.”
“Because” is a magic word. When we were growing up our parents used this word when answering their children’s questions, and as a result we have become conditioned to respond to this word whenever we hear it.
In a sales presentation, adding the words “because this program is very effective” causes the person hearing your presentation to be primed to accept what you’re telling them. This is due to the cause/effect inference.
Add the word “Now” to the sentence can make it even more powerful.
“Because this program is so very effective, you need to be doing this NOW.”
Doesn’t that sound confident? Doesn’t that sound positive? Doesn’t that convey a sense of urgency?
Courtesy Never Goes Out of Style
Two words you can never over use, are “Please” and “Thank You.”
I’m sure your parents told you repeatedly to always ask for things by saying “Please” and whenever anyone did anything for you, to always say “Thank You.” These words still show respect to the people you deal with and you should use them with everyone you meet in the selling process.
Our Favorite Name
Everyone has a favorite name. Their own.
In sales, it’s important to use a person’s name, but not to over use it.
As a general rule of thumb, I suggest using a person’s name in your opening and conclusion and maybe once during the presentation.
Now, just imagine yourself making more sales because you are using words that are extremely effective.
Please give it a try with your sales presentations this coming week.
Thank You for reading this article about how the words you use matter.
4 responses to “The Words You Use Matter”
The executive editor at a large media company where I worked insisted that the phrase “I think” never be used on air. “We don’t pay you to think, we pay you to know,” he’d rant. He was right. I never used that phrase on the air again. This is an excellent piece, Dick, and I wish the younger folks working in broadcast news would read it.
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Thank You Bob. Some lessons are universal and choosing the right words is certainly one of them.
Enlightening. Thank you for sharing it.
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Thank You. -DT