In their book “The Age of Persuasion: How Marketing Ate Our Culture,” advertising and marketing specialists Terry O’Reilly and Mike Tennant provide insight into the persuasive powers of language.
Words Can Have Emotional Associations
Why is language so important? Because many words and phrases have connotations, positive or negative, that influence how we perceive things. Connotations may change with time and can differ from culture to culture.
The Emotional Language of Real Estate
As O’Reilly and Tennant point out, savvy real estate copywriters are masters of choosing descriptive words with positive connotations. In real estate advertising, you shop for a home, not a house. A house is impersonal — anyone can have a house — but you live in a home. Small can mean cramped, but intimate or cozy imply comfort.
The language, features, and benefits of real estate writing have become so standard that software developers have tried to code it into programs that will write your real estate ads for you.
Our writers test drove one of these programs, with mixed results:
Newlyweds should come see this 2450-SF brick home in Greenwood. Has 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, master suite with separate shower, whirlpool tub for tired bones, linen closet, casual living room with fireplace for chilly mornings, built-in bookcases, wood floors, dining room, sunny kitchen with breakfast area. $320,000. Please call John Smith for more information.
Newlyweds, put your tired bones in the whirlpool tub? An interesting visual, but perhaps not one with a positive connotation.
What Words Are You Using in Your Web Copy?
You might not need to follow the real estate industry and choose entirely new words to describe your product. But have another look at your web copy. Could you use words or phrases with a more positive connotation?
For more on getting the right words on your website, you can check out the following articles:
- Web Writing: The Good, Bad and Ugly
- Treat Online Guests With Respect
- How to Find the Right Tone for Your Web Copy
- Converting Clicks Into Customers
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