55 Words That Convert

I just told an art director friend I was writing an article about verbs. I could see her rolling her eyes all the way from South Carolina, and we weren’t using Skype or Facetime! But then Marcie knows me; I’m a word nerd. I love words, especially verbs. Here’s why you should love ’em, too.

(NOTE: For those of you who slept through grade school grammar, a verb is a word that describes an action, condition or experience. For example, the words run, click, keep, share and feel are all verbs.)

You don’t have to be a word nerd — or a writer — to appreciate the power of a well-chosen verb to increase opens, clickthroughs and conversions that lead to more sales.

With most of today’s digital and ink-on-paper marketing including at least one call to action, verbs are more valuable than ever. That’s why writers and content developers need to choose their verbs carefully. Specificity really does count when it comes to selecting verbs that inspire, engage, motivate and persuade readers.

For those of you on Twitter, here’s an ah-ha. According to Hubspot Social Media Scientist Dan Zarrell, “Verbs beat all — adverbs, adjectives and nouns — in terms of attracting the highest number of shares. In fact, Twitter updates that include verbs have a 2 percent higher shareability than the average tweet.” (I can’t wait to see how many of you share this on Twitter.)

So, whether it’s a tweet, subject line, headline, envelope teaser, or CTA button, the right verb can dramatically amp up the clicks, calls, opens, and visits by which your marketing is measured. Here’s a list of verbs to get you started. Test for the best.

  1. act
  2. add
  3. apply
  4. boost
  5. buy
  6. build
  7. call
  8. choose
  9. claim
  10. click
  11. compare
  12. confirm
  13. connect
  14. contact
  15. discover
  16. download
  17. explore
  18. find
  19. follow
  20. get
  21. grab
  22. go
  23. improve
  24. increase
  25. join
  26. kickstart
  27. keep
  28. like
  29. learn
  30. make
  31. master
  32. pack
  33. plan
  34. perfect
  35. polish
  36. read
  37. receive
  38. reduce
  39. register
  40. reply
  41. save
  42. see
  43. send
  44. share
  45. shop
  46. sign (up)
  47. start
  48. take
  49. talk
  50. try
  51. tweet
  52. update
  53. view
  54. visit
  55. watch

One more thing. If you want scientific proof of the power of listening to or reading verbs to encourage a physical motor response (aka a click or call), read this. Caution: Be prepared to dig through the science-speak. This is not marketing copy.


Pat Friesen is a direct response copywriter, content developer, copy coach and creative strategist. She is also the author of 'The Cross-Channel Copywriting Handbook,' published by Direct Marketing IQ. Reach her at (913) 341-1211.


Publish date: October 8, 2015 https://dev.adweek.com/performance-marketing/55-words-that-convert-for-love-verbs/ © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT
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