The most important word in marketing is…

…I have no idea.

But I suspected Google had the answer. So, according to 625 Google references to the exact phrase “most important word in marketing,” the following are the five most common answers:

1) YOU
“I’ve always said that the most important word in marketing is YOU. That is, your marketing needs to convey very clearly what’s in it for the client or customer. ‘This is what YOU get, client.’ Take a look at some of those very important conditions that must be met before a prospective client is likely to do business with you.”

–Robert Middleton

2) WHY
“The most critical word in marketing contains only three letters. It’s the word WHY. It is much better to communicate WHY you are original, special or unique, or WHY you are better, different or superior than competitors, and not the *fact* that you are. In other words, the point is that you should imply your superiority by specifying, as much as possible, what exactly makes you better than anyone else. This approach is more powerful, and the effect lasts longer.”
–Michael Fortin

“Every guerrilla knows that the number one factor influencing purchase decisions is confidence. The road to confidence is paved with credibility. And that’s the most important word in marketing – commitment. It is something that also fuels your credibility. When people see that you are maintaining consistency in your marketing, they’ll assume you’re just as committed to quality and service.”

–Jay Conrad Levinson

4) NEW
“New is probably the strongest word in marketing. People are attracted to new products like a magnet. Introducing new products on a constant basis is the best way to get attention and invaluable free publicity for your business.”

–Roni Horowitz

“FREE was, is and will always be the most powerful word in marketing. Most viral marketing programs give away valuable products or services to attract attention. FREE will usually get results and responses much faster. Viral marketers practice a form of delayed gratification. They may not profit today, or tomorrow, but if they can generate a groundswell of interest from something free, they know they will profit sooner or later. Why? Because FREE attracts eyeballs.”

–Edward “Skip” Masland

I put “free” last because I also found a brilliant article which argues that “free” is the most DANGEROUS word in marketing. Check this out:

“I’ve been advising businesses for nearly 20 years that a business model driven by attracting prospects through giving something away for free is almost always a model for failure. And it doesn’t matter whether you use this model online or offline – it will nearly always fail.”

–Bob Serling


What do you think is the most important word in marketing?

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Scott Ginsberg
Author/Speaker/That guy with the nametag


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