Quick Copy Tip: When to Nix the Numbers

"Yes, what you say is crucial. But how you say it can make all the difference."

Amen, Copyblogger. Amen. They hit the nail on the head in this post

Sales copy is often packed with statistics and numerical information to illustrate a bigger point. But is that the best way? 

Consider this example from Copyblogger. Which would you rather read?

OPTION ONE: A typical bag of movie popcorn has 37 grams of saturated fat, while the USDA recommends you have no more than 20 grams in an entire day.

OPTION TWO: A medium-sized ‘butter’ popcorn contains more artery-clogging fat than a bacon-and-eggs breakfast, a Big Mac and fries for lunch, and a steak dinner with all the trimmings — combined!

Option two is clearly more powerful because it uses a statistic to tell a story. Many audiences glaze-over when presented with a barrage of numbers, but most are attracted to and remember a relatable comparison - even if it holds no numerical evidence. 

How can this apply to your business? Consider impressive, "fun-fact" information that you can present to your customers in a more visual, dynamic way. For example:

  • If your restaurant wants to illustrate the number of happy customers it served last year:
    • OPTION 1: "We're honored to have served 36,500 happy customers last year!"
    • OPTION 2: "Last year, we were honored to serve enough people in our community to fill five hundred school busses!" 
  • If your Greek yogurt brand wants to illustrate its high-protein content: 
    • OPTION 1: An 8 oz. serving of our product has in 23 grams of protein!"
    • OPTION 2: "Just one serving of our Greek yogurt packs more protein than four eggs and a fraction of the fat."  

QUICK COPY FIX: Look through your website copy today. Are there places you're using numbers instead of illustration-infused copy? Are their claims that could be better backed by presenting the information in a new way? Let me know what you find in the comments!