Mumbo Jumbo Alert: Take the time to edit for CREDIBILITY.

When speaking or sending correspondence, writing copy for articles, the web, ads – run it by someone else, please. We all look for the grammatical and spelling errors, but how about the credibility errors? It takes one phrase to make the rest of our message become white noise or disappear with a click.

Recently, we bought a car. We needed insurance and have been with GEICO for years. The policy has continued to go up, as happens when you forget to shop around from time to time. We figured it was time to get a quote. The dealership had an Allstate office. We gave the perky sales professional a shot. She beat it by a LOT! We asked questions and signed up, and she alerted GEICO of our change. GEICO sent us a polite white flag email with some points to consider and check, including the question of an introductory price that will most likely go up after 6 months – just like the cable company.  Funny, I even mentioned those types of practices to the Allstate office manager and how much I disliked those sales tactics.

This was our question: 

On another topic, is our auto policy a low introductory rate? How long is the rate good for? 

This was the reply:

As for your auto policy, you did receive introductory discounts when you signed up and they could be subject to change upon renewal. You will be receiving you current rate, indefinitely, until the end of your 6-month policy. If there are changes upon renewal, we are here for you to tell you what specifically changed and why, if anything does change.

I’m guessing she said something after indefinitely, until the end of…blah, blah, blah.  She and they lost all credibility mixing a word such as INDEFINITELY with conditions. “You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.”

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Trust has been broken because I’ve been mumbo-jumboed. Make sure your message is straight-forward and clear. BUT is a cancelling word. It negates everything that follows. See if you can substitute AND and get the same point across, or make it into two sentences. “I think he’s so talented, BUT…….” Say what you mean clearly, simply – you will be respected more and will build more trust.

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