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Copywriting Tip #13

Make your sentences pack a punch.
Don’t write -
“Give us a call to find out more”
Swap it round -
“To find out more, give us a call”

 

Don't put the cart before the horse

Date: 
Tuesday, February 21, 2017
Make your sentences pack a punch

What do you make of these sentences?

"Start using our great new CRM system to improve your efficiency."

"Call us today to find out more."

"The directors are facing some tough decisions, if they want to sort out this mess."

Notice anything odd about them?
 

They’re perfectly grammatical.  They make sense.  And hooray!  There are no spelling mistakes.  But don’t you agree?  There’s definitely something not quite right.

Here are two clues. The first is in the cartoon.

Here's the second.  This was recently voted the fifth funniest joke ever –

I said to the gym instructor: "Can you teach me to do the splits?"
I said: "I can't make Tuesdays
”, when he asked, “How flexible are you?”

It doesn’t work, does it?  Even though it’s perfectly grammatical, it falls flat.  Why?  Because the punchline isn’t at the end.  Of course it should read like this.

I said to the gym instructor: "Can you teach me to do the splits?"
He asked,
“How flexible are you?”
I said: "I can't make Tuesdays”.

It’s the same with those three sentences at the top.  They’re weak - lacking impact, because the punchline is at the beginning.

Try these instead.

"To improve your efficiency, start using our great new CRM system."

"To find out more, call us today."

"If they want to sort out this mess, the directors are facing some tough decisions."

Notice the improvement?

So the moral is a simple one. 

Make sure your key message is at the end, when your sentence is in two parts

Or perhaps I should write -

When your sentence is in two parts, make sure your key message is at the end.

Till the next time ...

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