Baked flatbread with variety of toppings.

How Smart Marketers Name Products to Increase Sales

Recently I’ve noticed that some restaurants are playing word games.

Instead of offering “pizza,” they’re offering “flatbreads,” even though the two are virtually indistinguishable.

But it does change customers’ perceptions.

Pizza is an inexpensive food for Friday nights. But stone-fired artisan flatbread… that sounds fancy, and possibly worth paying a little extra for.

It is for this reason that I asked you a question last week: “Would you be more likely to hire a direct response copywriter or a conversion optimization expert?”

I then asked “Why?”

Based on early responses, I thought “conversion optimization expert” was going to be the runaway winner, but I was wrong.

Direct response copywriter took 55.56% of the votes (25 out of 45).

The comments were the most interesting part.

Most people seemed to think that the work direct response copywriters do is more difficult than what COEs do.

People also generally thought of hiring a copywriter for a new product and a COE for an old product. For example:

Starting from scratch? Direct response copywriter. But if I’m hiring someone to improve an existing website, probably going with conversion optimization expert.

And another:

If I was hiring someone to create the first version of a sales page (for example), I’d prefer a direct response copywriter. However, if the page already existed and I want to make it better, that is when I’d get a conversion optimization expert :)

A few people mentioned the ideal blend of a direct response copywriter with conversion optimization skills.

Another person said he would never hire a COE who didn’t already have copywriting skills.

Respondents viewed conversion optimization experts as having a limited skill set and direct response copywriters as more versatile because they can be effective in both online and off-line environments.

But some preferred “Conversion Optimization Expert” simply because the label seemed more directly tied to results. (Do I want copy or conversions? Well, conversions, of course!)

Anyway, the labels we use have a direct impact on our customers’ and clients’ perceptions. Choose the wrong label and you’ll be fighting against negative perceptions. But choose the right label and you’ll have the wind at your back because you’ll be working with positive perceptions.

When I shared these observations in a private forum, a few people chimed in with their own personal stories and experiments.

For example, Danny Iny shared, “I definitely got better results calling Campaign Mastery a ‘marketing blueprints club’ as opposed to a ‘newsletter.'”

And Bnonn Tennant revealed, “I call my autoresponder sequence a micro-course, and I tie in the names of my continuity products to my overall brand — so it’s not a newsletter, it’s a Communiqué, and it’s not a club/group, it’s a Guild.”

Want to improve your sales results? Pay attention to the labels and words you use. They’re important.

-Ryan M. Healy

P.S. I’m available on a limited basis for high quality copywriting projects. You can tell me about your project here.

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Ryan Healy

Ryan Healy is a freelance copywriter, list manager, and the author of Speed Writing for Nonfiction Writers. Since 2002, he has worked with scores of clients, including Agora Financial, Lombardi Publishing, and Contrarian Profits. He writes a popular blog about copywriting, advertising, and business growth, has been featured in publications like Feed Front magazine, and has been published on sites like,, and

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