After 25 years in advertising there are certain terms and phrases that pop up again and again that make my flesh creep and blood boil. They mostly appear where the copywriting is lazy and the writer turns to cliche because it’s easier than being original.

My least favourite cliches in advertising, in no particular order, are:

“Simply the best” – The laziest of all phrases. Thanks Tina Turner for giving us that one. I wish I had a pound for every client that asked for Tina’s power anthem to be part of their commercial.

“That’s right” – I’ve just told you something and then, because you’re ignorant, hard of hearing or simply not listening, I’m going to stress the fact that I’m going to tell you again, blockhead!

“Why not” – Why not come to our sale? Why not pick up the phone and call us? Why not not use ‘why not’ in your advertising and just use a clear statement telling the customer what you want them to do! Every time I hear or see ‘Why not’ I want to scream, ‘Because I have better things to do!’

“No obligation quotation” – Duh! All quotations are no obligation! Surely that is the point of them!

“Good”– Why do pubs insist on signs stating they sell ‘good food?” This of course differentiates them from the pubs that sell bad food, inedible food and pig fodder.

“Quality” – I think every car dealer on the planet sells ‘quality cars.” It’s a meaningless word unless preceded by another word like ‘good’, ‘premium’ or ‘iffy’.

“Open seven days a week” – Guess what retailers? This is normal now! By all means state that you are closed weekends or Sundays, but since the Sunday Trading Act of 1994 most retailers have been open seven days a week.

“Wide selection” – The art of stating the bleedin’ obvious. Car dealers that sell a ‘wide selection of new and used cars;’ garden centres that sell a ‘wide selection’ of plants; chinese restaurants that sell a ‘wide selection’ of oriental dishes… you know who you are… stop it!

“Massive” – Massive choice or massive savings can lead to massive disappointment on behalf of the customer. Customers are not stupid. They know that if there is a massive saving then the price was overinflated in the first place and that the massive choice offered by most retailers pales into insignificance when compared to what’s available online.

The list is not exhaustive and I will keep adding to it as other annoying cliches and phrases occur to me.  Feel free to add your own.

For help with non-cliche advertising copy, contact me via the form below, call me on 07887 853001 or check out this link.