Behavioral economists have conclusively shown that, under the right circumstances, loss-avoidance is more motivating than the prospect of gain. That’s why time-limited offers, limited quantities and phrases like “don’t miss out” work.
The only problem? Clients who indulge an exclusive diet of positive-mental-attitude books and tapes and may reel at the thought of a negative word. Such are apt to order the writer to change “don’t miss out” to “take advantage of.” Ironically, by so doing, they could be missing out.