Imagine that you’re visiting a dog obedience class. And you tell one of the well-trained pooches, “don’t sit!”
What does the dog do? Chances are it will sit. Even though you’ve told it not to.
You see, dogs don’t understand negatives in front of commands. They just hear the command.
The human subconscious brain is just the same
Even though our ears hear the negative language (or our eyes read it), our brains don’t register the negative message either, just like the dog obedience class story.
For example, I were to tell you NOT to think of a bouquet of beautiful, luscious red roses, what are you visualising?
Most likely you are thinking of a bouquet of red roses, even though I explicitly told you NOT to think of them!
Your prospects and clients are much the same
Just like your brain doesn’t really register the negative language, neither do your clients and prospects. Yet it is very common to see negatives being used in business communications. Everything from websites, sales letters and emails will say things like:
“Don’t forget to take us up on this offer.”
“Don’t hesitate to contact me.”
These communications may as well be saying “forget about this offer”, and “hesitate to contact me”. Because subliminally, that’s what the readers will be picking up on.
Instead of negative language and wishy-washy phrases, be bold! Tell your readers what you really want them to do!
“Be sure to take us up on this offer.”
“I’d love to hear from you!”
This may seem a very minor tweak to make to your copywriting, but it’s a powerful one.
You see, this kind of positive language makes your team – and your company as a whole – sound more positive, confident and professional.
So make it your company policy to use nothing but positive language in your marketing materials and chances are you’ll get more positive results too.