Five Exaggeration Words that Can Ding Your Credibility

How accurate are your claims and statements about your business or professional life?

If you are in business for yourself, marketing often falls on your shoulders. It’s hard to find the delicate balance of confident self-promotion while remaining gracious and humble. One temptation in marketing ourselves and our businesses–that can often be unintentional–is to use superlative words to add attention and perceived credibility to our work. But the use of exaggeration can backfire, especially if you do it a lot. If you want to have true integrity, here are some words you should be careful of using in your business conversation and promotions materials, along with examples.

Always – “Our company always puts the customer first.”  This may or may not be, and maybe shouldn’t always be, true.

Responsive – don’t describe yourself this way if you don’t have systems in place to respond to all forms of communication your customers may choose (including social media.)

Never – “We never close.”  If you close any time, (i.e. Christmas) avoid saying this or using the word never…ever.

Constantly – “We see this constantly as we interact with clients/customers.”  Do you really? Or is it more that you have one or two examples in mind and want to sound like you are an expert who deals with this issue frequently?

Wrong numbers – “There were more than 3000 people at the event” when the venue only holds 2500.  This exaggeration may not seem like a big deal, but if you speak about integrity then brag about bigger attendance than was accurate, how honest are you really being?

What exaggerations have you heard that make a company’s credibility a little dimmer for you?


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