Delete These 5 Phrases From Your Treatment Center's Copy ASAP
Words have power.
A good addiction treatment center website harnesses the power of words to do one thing: attract and convert leads into patients. If your site is doing its job, each word or phrase nudges leads down the sales funnel towards conversion.
Oh, if only it were that easy.
I’ll be honest: the average addiction treatment center website is covered in less-than-stellar copy.
It’s no small wonder why some sites aren’t converting. I see the same copywriting mistakes again and again on rehab and other treatment providers’ sites. These mistakes aren't just typos—they're misguided messages that are hurting admissions numbers, turning away patients, and even causing leads to lose confidence in your ability to help.
Today, let’s check out the worst—and most common—offenders in the industry and see how we can tweak these lackluster phrases to make them more effective.
Phrase #1: “We”
What’s wrong with “we?” Let’s see…Everything.
If you use the words “we” and “us” a lot, you’re focusing on your story. What’s wrong with that?
Listen up: your lead is always the hero of the story, not you.
It’s a little counter-intuitive, but when your lead is discovering you, they want to read about themselves—not about you. They want to know if your service is the right service for them. Focus on the world as your lead sees it. Make the content about them and their journey. Make them the lead character.
For example, compare:
“We’ll teach you how to deal with cravings.”
“You’ll learn how to deal with cravings.”
“You’ll learn…” is a clear winner.
Why? Because your leads don’t care about your center—they care about what’s in it for them.
Another way of looking at it is to ask yourself: “Am I helping my lead or am I helping myself?” Killer content always helps our hero—your lead—solve a problem, learn a thing, or acquire a skill.
Killer content is always valuable and useful to your lead.
Crappy content, on the other hand, is usually about the seller. What most people think of as “sales copy” is actually sales-killing garbage. “Tooting your own horn” and bragging about how great you are can actually work against you - especially when you are just starting to build relationships with leads.
They’re not ready for it yet.
Why should leads care about you if you don't care about them?
Phrase #2: "For More Information..."
This phrase just makes me cry.
“For more information...?” What kind of information? When? From who? How?
Your lead has no idea what’s going to happen if they take the next step. This phrase leaves them with a ton of uncertainty. You are just starting your relationship with your lead. The last thing you want to do here is leave them guessing!
Tell leads exactly what to expect—and then deliver 110%. That’s the only way to build trust.
Without trust, you have no conversion.
Phrase #3: “World-class”
Ah, world-class. Industry standard. Ground-breaking. These terms are so overused that they’re meaningless.
It’s fluff. You want 0% fluff.
Why nix the fluff? Because fluff does nothing to your lead emotionally. It does nothing to differentiate you from your competitors. It’s just sort of...there. It’s taking up space, distracting from the copy that is actually going to convert. Bad.
Phrase #4: “Continuum of Care” or Anything With the Word “Biopsychosocial” in It
I can tell you right now that Aunt Suzie isn’t gonna share that “5 Things You Need to Know About the Continuum of Care” blog post on Facebook.
You are certainly speaking to someone with that post—maybe insurance geeks or CADCs—but you’re definitely not talking to your lead or their loved ones. You know - the people you're supposed to be talking to.
The same goes with any jargon-laden content about “co-occurring disorders,” “biopsychosocial assessments,” or “diagnostic criteria.”
Unless your lead is a treatment veteran, they have never encountered these terms. These phrases are not in your lead’s mind when they’re searching for you. This is not what they're typing into Google. These simply aren’t the words they use to describe what they need.
Good addiction services copy replaces industry jargon and insurance speak with the phrases your patients actually use. Start listening to how leads describe themselves and their problems. Listen to what questions they ask on admissions calls. Read the reviews patients leave about your rehab on Google, Yelp, and other review sites. The phrases you see there should be the exact phrases you lead with in your copy.
Does that mean you can never use professional-sounding words to describe your services? Heck, no. There’s a place for that. It just means that jargon shouldn’t be your go-to vocabulary for landing pages, sales pages, or viral blog posts.
Phrase #5: “Submit”
I don’t know about you, but I don’t ever want to “submit” to anything, especially not to a sad embedded contact form on a website. I’m pretty sure most addicts will agree with me.
Did you know that contact forms only convert at 3%?
People only fill out contact forms if they need something from you, and even then it’s a long-shot. Leads are stingy about their contact information. You’ve got to earn it. Leads need to see that they are going to get something worthwhile out of the interaction. A generic contact form with a generic “submit” button doesn’t fit the bill.
Instead of generic contact forms, consider HIPAA compliant surveys or quizzes—two of the highest converting types of forms. They engage leads and collect a lot of information about them at the same time.
Not sold on surveys? They’re not for everyone or every brand.
If you must have a generic contact form, mix it up with a button that reflects what the lead will get out of the interaction—“Get Started,” “Get Answers,” “Get a Call-Back,” etc. With buttons like these, at least leads know what’s in it for them.
Ditch the dead weight
These phrases are holding your site back from being the best conversion machine it can be.
Now that you know, do something about it.
Shift content to “you” instead of “we” to re-frame the story with your lead as the main character. Avoid vague phrases like “for more information...” and get specific about what your lead can expect from you. Ditch fluff or leads will wander away before you get to “yes.” Drop the jargon and speak to the most important person in the room—your lead—on their terms. And, finally, get rid of the “submit” button because “submission” is not on your lead’s to-do list.
There’s a lot more to say about the art and science of conversion copywriting, but just avoiding these 5 phrases in your website copy should help you close more leads, save more lives and give the disease of addiction a run for its money.