Honesty in business writing

Let’s be honest: everything written in business aims to increase sales in some way, whether it’s a press release, white paper, job advert or report.

I don’t see a problem with that, as no business can exist without sales. What can be a problem is how honest the writing is.

For example, ‘new’ has long lost its credibility when used to describe soap powders or laundry products. Over-use has destroyed any impact the word once had.

Likewise, ‘enhanced’, ‘improved’, ‘bigger’ and ‘better’ – from bitter experience many consumers know that the only aim of re-packaging or re-launching some products is to get them to buy ‘more’.

Now there’s nothing wrong with wanting people to buy more, unless the consumer feels they are being tricked into buying something.

The best result for any business is for the consumer to buy a product and feel really pleased with their purchase, not conned out of their money.

This is where copywriting can help to develop a sales advantage. It is possible to attract people to buy without using the ‘new, bigger, better’ promises, but it requires thought and hard work.

If honest, effective writing can differentiate a product from its competitors, isn’t that worth the effort – for more sales?

Robert Zarywacz