Objective Copywriting

through my growth course, mentorship program, speaking engagements, and writing i’ve been asked to critique 100s of websites.

in doing so i realize why everyone hates marketers: marketers are liars.

while morality is out of scope for this blog, there’s a quick way to improve your website that i call objective copywriting.

objective copywriting

fix your subjective, lying, cheating copywriting like this:

  • easiest” → “easy
  • The best…→ “we’re proud of …
  • #1 burger in NYC” → “rated #1 in BurgerBros magazine

verify claims like a PhD cites peer-reviewed articles. ask yourself: would i sell this to my mom’s friends?

how to hyperbole

remove self-aggrandizing language like “unique” or “special” and let customers say it for you. then quote the testimonial:

“unique and amazing”
–Sarah from TechCrunch

a few more OK phrases, if true:

  • first
  • most affordable
  • fastest
  • patent-pending

the clever fallacy

avoid “product Freudian slips.”

i coined this term to describe when marketers leak solution attributes they think are interesting into their value proposition.

for example, copy like this is on 1000s of websites right now:

  • “the new way to book home cleanings”
  • “the new way to buy a car”

new is not necessarily better. it’s OK to challenge the status quo, but the status quo is exactly that because it works.


can a vegan and a carnivore walk by the same restaurant and think “that’s for me?” should they?

JavaScript makes it easy to convince every visitor your product was made for them. the truth is: it’s not. marketers who play the long game understand that for each website visitor you alienate, you earn the trust of another.

Godin says “people like us do things like this,” and that’s all you need to know about building and selling products honestly.