Are “Platitudes” Destroying Your Marketing Budget?

To many business owners and managers, marketing is perceived as a “necessary evil.”  To others, it’s the most valuable line item on their budget.  The difference between the two is content.

Relevant content is the key to driving massive response.

One of the main reasons why prospects can’t tell the difference between you and your competition are platitudes.

So what’s a platitude?

“It is words or phrases that are commonplace and predictable. They lack the power to evoke interest due to overuse or repetition and they are nearly always stated as though they were original or significant.”

Platitudes - Opportunity Knocks Postcards

Now in advertising, you’re going to hear platitudes all the time.  In fact you probably have them in your current direct mail advertising…every business does!

You’ll hear things like largest selection, most professional, lowest prices, highest quality, best service, fastest, most convenient, largest inventory, more honest, expert in, specializing in, works harder, gets the job done right the first time, (never heard that one before, 🙂 ) or been in business since…you get the point.

Look, I’m not saying that you shouldn’t be or truly are those kinds of things.  What I am saying…you shouldn’t use those platitudes in your advertising!

Why not?  Well, think about it.  If your ad says that you have high quality and great service…isn’t that drearily commonplace and predictable?  Of course it is!  Is this really what makes you the best?  Can you specifically tell what makes you valuable to the marketplace when you say, highest quality and service?

You can’t. You can’t describe, demonstrate, exhibit, reveal or display your true competitive advantages using platitudes. It’s impossible. All these result into an outside perception that you’re what?  That’s right…just like everybody else.  There’s no distinction, no separation, no differentiation, none.  It’s simply impossible to demonstrate your superior value to the marketplace using platitudes.

So, if you’ve ever felt that you have a great business, but you’re the best kept secret in town, chances are extremely high that you are the master of the platitudes. In fact, if you ever run any marketing piece of any kind ever, chances it was littered with platitudes.

If you don’t think so, go grab your stuff right now because I’m going to give you three platitude tests to evaluate your marketing.  This is not my opinion, this is objective stuff.

Okay, so here’s the first evaluation. It’s called Scratch Out/Write-In Test.

So look at your brochures, your websites, your yellow page ad or any of your advertisements.  Now, scratch out your name and write in the name of your top competitor.  If the ad is still valid, if there wouldn’t be a need to make any additional changes, then you just failed the test.

Platitudes are basically the number one marketing budget destroyer I’m aware of.  It’s the cause for a dismal advertisement result yet everybody is using them.

What if you are the first company in your industry to figure out how to do this right?  What would that do for your local business?

Just think about it…

Remember, before your customers pay you anything, they must “pay attention!” Q4 is here! To help you experience the best Q4 ever, we’ll be releasing even more valuable tips and tests on how to avoid these budget destroying platitudes in our no fluff, content rich 12 week series, “Your Attention, Please!”

Ready to do something about now? Contact one of our knowledgeable marketing consultants at 866-319-7109 or at for a free marketing evaluation. We’ll review your current marketing and looks for ways to better communicate your competitive advantages in your direct mail.