Marketing Falling Flat? Try These “Magic” Words and Colors!

Today, business owners are spoiled with choices when it comes to marketing. You’ve got ways to reach your customers that people just 30 or 40 years ago couldn’t even dream of. But, while you’re focusing on all of these endless options, are you neglecting the good old fashioned nuts and bolts of advertising, like word and color choice? The key to effective marketing might not really be magic (in fact, it takes a lot of thought!), but we can help you out with some “magic” words and convincing colors to incorporate into your marketing, so you can stand out from the crowd – no tricks required!

What’s the Marketing “Magic” Word?

No, we’re not talking about “please,” although that’s an important magic word! But just like saying “please” can influence the way a person feels about a request, using the right words in your marketing can impact buying decisions. It has been proven that you can improve audience response and inspire customers to take action with the right words and phrases. These marketing words will create positive associations, and ultimately convince them that your product or service is the one that is worth a second look (and their money). Try these “magic” marketing words in your posts and ads: 

the word free in red

  • Free – We’re starting off with a pretty obvious one, but we want to make sure that you never forget just how much people love free stuff. If you can offer anything at all for free to your customers, do so (but don’t trick them) – and then be sure to feature the word “free” prominently in your ad. 
  • Complimentary – This word has a similar effect to “free,” but is a good choice if you’re looking to class things up.
  • You – How is this a “magic” word? Well, we’re not just talking about throwing it around in any old way, we’re talking about using it to directly address your customer, and make them feel like you are addressing them personally. After all, everyone likes to feel special.
  • Savings – Telling customers that they will save money with you versus the competition will always go a long way in winning their business. limited time offer written in red on a yellow post it note
  • Limited – File this along with any word or phrase (like flash sale, last chance, or act now) that implies your customers need to jump on your product or service, or they might miss out on a great offer.
  • Guaranteed – Sometimes you have to remove the risk or ease your customers’ fears, and this magic word can help give them a sense of security. You can also use the word proven to lessen the sense of risk and instill confidence.
  • Instant – We live in a pretty fast-paced world, where customers want instant access to everything (for example, 47% of people expect a website to load in 2 seconds!). Use this magic word to assure your customers that they won’t have to wait, thus reinforcing their buying momentum. You can also use fast or immediate to get a similar effect. 
  • No obligation/commitment – You need to create a win/win situation for your customers, and you can do this by implying your deal is so great that they won’t want to back out – but they can if they want to. the word easy spelled out in scrabble letters
  • Easy – Everybody’s got 99 problems. Tell them how your product or service can simplify their life; or, use this magic word to let them know that the process of becoming your customer is super streamlined. The easier it is to become a customer, the more likely they are to convert. 
  • Opportunity – Similar to the above magic words that create a sense of urgency, “opportunity” also implies that what you’re offering is quick and ready for the taking, so customers who are in the know shouldn’t let it pass them by. 
  • Exclusive – Just as addressing your customers directly can make them feel special, so too can giving them access to a deal that is meant just for them.
  • See/discover – Consider adding verbs to your call to action, especially ones like these that invite customers to indulge their curiosity and explore the interesting things you have to offer. 
  • Enjoy – It doesn’t have to be all business – appeal to your customers’ “want” side instead of simply their “need” side and let them know that something really good awaits them.

Colorful Campaigns

the word marketing written in different colors
There is psychology behind colors and people’s emotions when it comes to buying.

Language is one thing – it’s pretty easy to understand why certain “magic” words get certain responses from customers (again, who doesn’t love free stuff?) But what about something that appeals to them on a deeper level, like color? The psychology surrounding color choice is by no means an exact science, but choosing the right color for your logo and ads can be a very important part of your marketing strategy. In fact, according to one study, 90% of snap judgements can be based on color alone.

So where do you begin when choosing colors for your brand, especially considering that there are 18 decillion colors out there (what even is a decillion?)? According to another study, the relationship of color to a brand hinges on whether or not the color is a good “fit” for the brand. For example, if you’re looking to give your brand a sense of “ruggedness,” try brown. Or, try some of these popular colors, which can influence your customers’ thinking in the following ways:

  • Red – Red is a powerful color, and is strongly tied to emotions that evoke a physical response. Think love, excitement, aggression or terror. If you want to get your customers’ hearts beating and get a quick response from them, red could be the way to go.
  • Green – Green is actually the easiest color for the eye to process. It tends to be used as a balancing color, one that can incorporate logic and emotion, and give a feeling of rest and stress relief. It’s also associated with nature, growth and health. All of this means that green tends to be used by both financial institutions and companies that want to be seen as environmentally friendly
  • Yellow – While green is easiest to process, yellow is the easiest color to see, so you can use it to grab customers’ attention. Yellow is also associated with “sunniness,” or optimism, and is a great way to make your customers feel inspired or to lift their spirits. 
  • Blue – Did you know that blue is the most popular color in the world? It is soothing, reliable, dependable, and trustworthy. Unlike red, which will get a physical response from viewers, blue tends to evoke a more mental reaction. the color orange
  • Orange – Since orange is a mix of red and yellow, it tends to have some of the power of red, tempered with the fun and friendliness of yellow. It’s definitely an attention grabber, so can be used as a motivational color. Interestingly, it’s also associated with affordability. You might want to use it sparingly if you are aiming your advertising toward women, though: it is the most unpopular color with them.
  • Black – Just as powerful as red, but in a different way, black is a color to use sparingly, but to really great effect. Use it to add sophistication, seriousness or a sense of independence. 
  • White – Using white is actually a pretty bold choice, but it can be effective – think Apple products and the clean, modern feeling they give off. It is also associated with purity, innocence, and peace. 

Does effective marketing contain a touch of magic? Maybe. Hitting on that perfect combination of word and color choice can seem pretty magical, especially when you start reaping the rewards of your advertising efforts, and your business starts to grow. So get out there and work that marketing magic!

Bouncing Back: Strategies to help businesses survive uncertain times.

The Covid-19 pandemic has changed the way industries function and reshaped our economic landscape – possibly for years to come. Thousands of businesses have been impacted by stay-at-home orders, and some will not be able to recover. However, there are many businesses that have been able to stay afloat. What is their owners’ secret? It may simply be that they are not allowing fear and uncertainty to paralyze them, and are working to find creative ways to adapt to this “new normal.” bulletin board with many post notes and a big one in the middle that says "make things happen"

There are lessons to be learned from these successful businesses: if you are faced with a crisis like the recent pandemic, don’t remain stagnant. Start by focusing on what you do have control over: your product or service, your business model, and your clients’ experience. Here are some strategies you can use to move forward.  

Adapt to the times

When crisis strikes, you may find that your business is no longer deemed essential.  In this case, be creative and think about how you can alter your business plan to meet the new needs of your community. For example, during the coronavirus pandemic, some liquor and spirit producers switched to using their distilleries to create hand sanitizer, and many fine-dining restaurants offered at-home date night packages. 

If a crisis requires businesses to close down, there are always options for staying connected. Many businesses have found solutions for social distancing while working, using Zoom, Google Drive, and BlueJeans to collaborate with colleagues. Virtual meetings might not be ideal, but adaptability is key to survival. 

Care about your clients

one hand with a red paper heart giving it to another hand
Don’t lose sight of providing the best possible service to your customers.

While you’re focusing on surviving a crisis or catastrophe don’t lose sight of providing the best possible service to your customers. If you’re struggling, be honest about it. Be transparent with your clients, and tell them directly how your services are being impacted by the situation. Address them like human beings, not dollar signs. During a crisis, clients will be seeking solutions and understanding, not pitches. 

If you are being impacted by closures and an unpredictable situation, again, try to be creative and adapt your services. To keep your name out there (even if it doesn’t give an immediate boost to your bottom line), you might consider offering discounts to emergency personnel, partnering with a non-profit that’s supporting relief efforts, or offering a free or donations-based seminar in your area of expertise. 

Prepare for the future

It’s never too late to prepare for hard times. This pandemic has served as a reminder to routinely examine your budget. Looking ahead, where can you find room for thriftiness? For example, when you’re back in business, you might implement a renewable energy initiative to cut down on energy costs. Or, save money on advertisements by turning to do-it-yourself marketing campaigns. By strategically tightening up your budget, refocusing on “survival mode”, and saving resources for similar situations in the future, you can take steps to protect your business despite global uncertainty. Remember, markets are always in flux, and challenging times will pass. 

Put health and safety first two caucasian women sitting on separate benches 6 ft apart with a sign in the middle that says 6 ft

Lead by example by prioritizing the health and well-being of your clients, employees, and community. Offer remote or socially distanced options for clients and employees, and always adhere to local and federal health guidelines. 

We’re all in this together. Be prepared for the future, remain flexible, focus on celebrating wins, and lead by example in taking excellent care of your employees, customers, and community, and you’ll be sure to emerge successful on the other side of any crisis.