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I work in one of the industries where there's a lack of trust across the board.

You know the type:

  • Used car salesmen
  • Banks/bankers
  • Estate agents

The way I look at it, you can ignore it completely or embrace it. We think we're different and choose the latter approach.

With that in mind, we're looking for a new tag line - something that will define us as a company.

I came across a tag line for a bank that could work for us - the only thing is I'm not sure it reads correctly.

The tag is "A bank you can actually like"

So, our tag line would be "A [snake oil salesman] you can actually like"

However, I'm not totally sold on the use of can. If it was used in a complete sentence, it would probably sound out of place.

Other phrases such as the ones below seem to flow better:

A [snake oil salesman] you **will** actually like

A [snake oil salesman] you **might** actually like

I'm no English expert by any stretch of the imagination, so thought I'd ask for feedback.

Does the original sound fine? Is can a stronger message in this context?

Are there other alternatives?

Thanks in advance.

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  • There is nothing wrong with the word. But any kind of "qualitative" feedback in this case would be subjective. (However, look at the Google results for "you can trust.") – Jason Bassford Jun 26 '18 at 13:06
  • Thanks Jason, didn't want to use "...you can trust" because it sounds like something you'd read in one of those corporate pamphlets. I picked up on the "like" element" purely because people can usually relate to disliking. The reason I asked the question is that, while "you can trust" sounds perfectly familiar, I can't ever say I've come across "you can like" in that context - you (like) or you don't (like) - but thought the clever marketeers that the bank employer might know better than me. – John Ohara Jun 26 '18 at 16:30
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"Can" is acceptable, however, in the context of "A [business] you can trust", it implies a sense of insecurity about trusting said business and assurance that this insecurity can be relieved, without the inherent (or perceived) negative consequences. So, if what you're trying to communicate is that the customer can safely allow themselves to like your business, then "can" would be the word to use. If you're telling them (tongue in cheek) there is a chance they'll like you, "might" is the way to go. If you want them to believe you are inherently likeable, then "will" is your best bet.

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  • The way I see it, the expectation is that this kind of business will typically be unlikable, so "you might like" (tongue in cheek) is probably the right tone, especially when it's emphasized "you might actually like". – John Ohara Jun 27 '18 at 6:44

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