Natalie Charles

Let’s not beat around the bush, corporate jargon is annoying and overcomplicated – that’s a given. But could it actually be damaging your relationship with your customers and, by extension, your business?

Read this rant think piece about corporate jargon and consider whether there might be a better way to communicate with your colleagues and your customers. (Spoiler alert: there is).

What I mean by “corporate jargon”?

When I say “corporate jargon”, what I’m referring to at large is language that uses a lot of words but that doesn’t really say much at all.

Corporate jargon and business buzzwords are thrown around all over the place in an office environment – I’m sure we’ve all been subjected to lingo such as “blue-sky thinking” and “let’s circle back” at work – but that’s not really the problem.

The problem is when a business is so attuned to their internal corporate jargon that they use the same business-speak to communicate with their customers and to advertise their products/services. And think about it, these customers work in their own offices and probably have to put up with their own share of corporate jargon, so they’re certainly not going to be impressed when businesses are trying to sell them stuff using the same kind of language.

Why it’s time to step away from business-speak

It’s not how people really talk

Business-speak just feels false. It’s not really how any of us actually talk, so why do we even bother with it? Maybe we think it makes us sound more knowledgeable, but that’s usually not the case. In fact, it rarely simplifies anything and almost always overcomplicates things.

Business-speak isn’t exciting, or persuasive, or interesting, so save it for the office (if you must) and keep it as far away from your marketing copy and customer comms as possible.

If your customers are human, they’ll appreciate you stepping away from the business buzzwords and talking to them like a person – trust me.

You’re probably confusing your customers 

You might think that using lots of big, complicated, abstract words is the best way to tell people what your company/product/service is all about, but you’re wrong. In fact, overcomplicated explanations may even isolate your target market, as you may cause them to feel foolish for not understanding what you’re saying, making them even less likely to engage with your business.

Marketing is all about giving people a simple, easy-to-understand solution to their problem(s). So, when you’re explaining why your solution is the best, make it simple and easy to understand.

Frankly, it’s boring

If you’re looking for the fastest way to bore people, talk to them using business lingo and watch their eyes glaze over.

If you want your business or brand to stand out above your competitors, keep your communication real and give your target audience something they can relate to.

There’s a better way to say it 

If you find yourself slipping into corporate mode when you’re trying to engage and resonate with your customers, stop and think “how can I simplify this sentence?”

In most cases, the best way to explain something – be it a product, a service, or a new show on Netflix – is to use the most simple and straightforward language possible.

To start with, why not try simplifying your everyday internal work conversations.

Instead of: Now that we’ve uncovered these key learnings, let’s take this offline for now and circle back to it.”

Why not try: “We’ve sussed it out. Let’s grab lunch.”

But what about B2B marketing?!

This might come as a surprise, but even if you’re in the business of B2B marketing, your audience still (presumably) consists of human beings. Remember, businesses are not your audience, people are your audience.

(If you’re interested in finding out more about B2B copywriting, my colleague, Pete, wrote a great blog about it called The Big Secret to B2B Copywriting and Content Marketing.)

We can help you craft compelling copy

Here at Coast, we provide excellent copywriting services that help businesses and brands across all kinds of industries and sectors tell their customers exactly who they are and what they offer using compelling yet concise language.

What’s more, we also offer digital copywriting training at Coast Campus for people of all skill levels.

If you think your business could benefit from some compelling copywriting, you may very well be right! Why not get the ball rolling and get in touch today?

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