Weekly Update – October 11, 2023

Article of the Week

The Fine Line: When Negative Copywriting Crosses the Limit

Going “negative” in your copywriting is something you must be aware of, but I think there are two ways that you can go negative.

One is a good way, and one is a bad way. Let’s talk about the good way first.

The good way to go negative is to basically meet people where they are with the conversation that’s going on in their mind. So, you can meet them on a negative like a problem they’re dealing with, and they have no idea there’s a solution available.

Maybe there’s an enemy out there who is taking advantage of them. Or, perhaps there’s a situation you need to warn them against to keep them out of trouble.

Those are all excellent “negatives” to include in your copywriting, in your content, and in your communication. It’s almost like a public service announcement.

So, if you want to warn somebody about a negative, or if you want to talk about a problem so that you can really get in sync with them, that’s a good thing.

Now let’s talk about “negative” negatives. By the way, a negative plus a negative does not make a positive.

I think the best example of “going negative” in your sales copy or communication you would want to avoid at all costs would be the example set by politicians with doing negative ads. 🏛👺

Now, chances are none, of us are going to go into politics, but what we never want to do is outright attack somebody. This means doing some sort of a negative ad where we talk about a competitor in a negative way. Maybe you can take little jabs here and there in a playful way, but you never want to go straight out negative toward somebody and pick a fight. It makes you look like the bad guy and shows a real lack of class.

I’m sure some would argue with me about it, but I could never see attack ads or sales copy as a good thing to do.

So, when you think about NOT “going negative” we’re not saying everything’s always super positive and we only talk about benefits (and we never bring up problems or any negative issues). But I think it’s clear you want to avoid attacking somebody outright by name.

One thing you can do if you need to point something negative out about someone else is to say something like:

 “Now, some of our competitors will tell you _____, but that’s not true. Here’s the truth you need to know…”


“You may have noticed that some people are _____, but we don’t think that’s right. Here’s why…”


“In the past, you may have experienced _____, but we don’t do things that way. Here’s what we do…”

You can attack the behavior, or the idea, or the practice, but don’t name names. You’re better than that and it doesn’t lead anywhere productive.

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Last Week’s Article

The Event is Over – Now It’s Time to Slay Success

You’re back home and starting to get settled in after surviving a mind-blowing event. You navigated through a sea of passionate business-minded attendee’s, networked till you dropped, and exchanged business cards and friend requests like there’s no tomorrow.

Along the way you likely made some amazing connections and maybe had a few exchanges that were more exhausting than running a marathon. But now that the event is over and you’ve gone through the intensity, it’s time to take a breath and figure out your next steps.

Continue Reading ->

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See Jim at Gen Blue 2023 – Atlanta in October (Remove October 17th)

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