Edited to add:
Her Royal Sweetness Lisa Burger realized what a pain it is to scroll through this long-ass list and kindly whipped up a lovely document that you can use as your very own swipe file. Now ain’t that sweet! Get it here.
Words aren’t just strings of alphabets sewn together with ink
Words are cues
Words are triggers
Words when used correctly can transform an “eh whatever” into “wow that’s it!”
Words can make you go from literally ROFL to fuming with fury to an uncontrollable-urge-to-take-action-NOW-or-the-earth-may-stop-swinging -on-its-axis.
These are what I call High Emotion Words
And these are capable of transforming an absolute no into almost yes and a “perhaps” into “for sure”!
Because it isn’t really about your desired action but the underlying emotion that drives that action. If you get them to feel that emotion, you GOT ‘em.
When you are trying to sell people a solution, what you are REALLY doing is evoking desire by making them imagine their best possible future with your solution
When you are trying to get them to take an action (like, share, subscribe, buy) what you are REALLY doing is arousing them (not THAT way… get your mind out of the gutter) to make it impossible for them NOT to take an action
When you are trying to get people to click and read your article, what you are REALLY doing is evoking curiosity so fierce that it claws at the minds of a casual browser and forces him to click that link and read that piece.
When you are trying to get someone to agree with you, what you are REALLY doing is trying to evoke empathy so they see your point of view.
So what are these high emotion words that can work this magic?
Glad you asked.
I have compiled a list of 380 words that are proven to induce certain emotions (both negative and positive) and that I strongly encourage you use in your online (and offline) communications to get your prospect to take the desired action.
But before I share the list with you, here is a 3 step plan to get the most out of these words:
Step One: Determine the desired action you want your prospect to take (e.g. like, share, read, subscribe, comment, buy etc.)
Step Two: Determine the exact emotional state that will drive that action (e.g. curious, relaxed, fearful, inspired etc.)
Step Three: Choose some of the words from this list and sprinkle ‘em throughout your content.
And now The List:
Emotional State: Curiosity (when you want them to be gripped by an unshakable desire to click and read more):
- What no one tells you
- Have you heard
- Behind the Scenes
- Secret agenda
- Secret plot
- Off-the record
- No one talks about
Emotional State: Urgency (If you want then to take action now now now):
- Missing Out
- Left behind
- Most Important
- Strongly agree/ recommend
- Strongly suggest
- Instant Savings
Emotional State: Confusion and Helplessness (Especially useful when questioning Status Quo, making them realize what they are missing out or “us vs them” style content)
Emotional State: Anger (This is a high physiological arousal emotional state that can help drive a number of actions such as getting support for a cause or sharing content because of the sheer outrage felt)
- ticked off
Emotional State: Safe and Satisfied (Great for Sales Pages when you want people to feel secure in their choice)
- A cut above
- Highly effective/ likely
- First ever
Emotional State: Happy and Alive (Health based products or services):
- on top of the
- at ease
Emotional State: Inspired (as part of content that is meant to inspire and make them feel like they are capable and in charge)
- in the zone
Emotional State: Relaxed and Peaceful (Products or services that offer mental peace and relaxation):
- at ease
phewwwww that was one long ass list don’t you think?
But how about we make it to 500. Now that’s a thought!
Help make that happen guys and drop some of your favorite high emotion words in the comments and I will go and add those to this list (with credit of course)
Ready. Set. GO!
Edited to Add:
I literally have the BEST readers ever and the the ever generous & awesome (Not to mention with the coolest name Eva!) Jo Jo Fildi has contributed some 20+ words making it a square 400. I have added those above colored in blue.
The Work of Byron Katie
Persuasive and Emotive Language
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The newest title in the popular 100 Words series is an informative and entertaining resource that can help anyone be right on the money when looking for words that will make a point, seal the deal, or just keep folks listening. Chosen by the editors of the American Heritage Dictionaries, these words will appeal to anyone who wants to be a more compelling communicator—as aThe newest title in the popular 100 Words series is an informative and entertaining resource that can help anyone be right on the money when looking for words that will make a point, seal the deal, or just keep folks listening. Chosen by the editors of the American Heritage Dictionaries, these words will appeal to anyone who wants to be a more compelling communicator—as a worker, consumer, advocate, friend, dinner companion, or even as a romantic prospect.
The book includes a colorful variety of words, including handy words of just one syllable (such as glib) and words derived from the names of famous people (such as Freudian slip and Machiavellian).
There are expressions from popular culture (Catch-22) and words that date back to classical civilization (spartan and stoic). Each word is clearly defined and shown in context with quotations from contemporary sources: magazines, newspapers, broadcast media, movies, and television. For many words, quotations from distinguished authors and speakers are also given and word histories are explained.
Like its predecessors in this successful series, 100 Words to Make You Sound Smart provides an affordable and enjoyable way to communicate more effectively. It offers the coveted gift of gab to anyone who needs to “say it right”—and to anyone who wants to sound more articulate....more
Paperback, 128 pages
Published October 4th 2006 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt