Avoid Clichés Like The …

If you finished the title of this Quick Tip in your mind with the word "plague," you're on your way to understanding why you should avoid clichés.

Clichés are timeworn expressions like "it's a dog-eat-dog world" and "once in a lifetime." When a cliché is first coined by some clever person, it is smart, witty, and powerful – a new and different way to say something that’s meaningful. But through overuse, it becomes stale and loses any real meaning.

You know that to write convincing sales copy, you must engage your prospect's interest immediately and throughout your copy. Your ideas must be exciting, as opposed to dull as [you fill in the blank!] and your words must carry him along to the final sale. Every time you use a cliché in your writing, you run the risk of losing your prospect's hard-won attention.

Clichés will undoubtedly sneak into your writing. Weed them out when you revise and replace them with ideas that are original and compelling.

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

At last, a professional organization that caters to the needs of direct-response industry writers. Find out how membership can change the course of your career. Learn More »


Click to Rate:
No ratings yet
Published: May 24, 2004

Guest, Add a Comment
Please Note: Your comments will be seen by all visitors.

You are commenting as a guest. If you’re an AWAI Member, Login to myAWAI for easier commenting, email alerts, and more!

(If you don’t yet have an AWAI Member account, you can create one for free.)


This name will appear next to your comment.


Your email is required but will not be displayed.


Text only. Your comment may be trimmed if it exceeds 500 characters.

Type the Shadowed Word
Too hard to read? See a new image | Listen to the letters


Hint: The letters above appear as shadows and spell a real word. If you have trouble reading it, you can use the links to view a new image or listen to the letters being spoken.

(*all fields required)