I’m tired. And the sense I’m getting from others is that they’re tired, too. It becomes more exhausting every day to decipher what most of our fellow marketers are trying to actually say or recommend and I think I know why.
We want to make sure other people know we’re smart. So we overpopulate whatever we’re writing – emails, presentations, etc. – with as many big words, buzz words and “ize” words as possible. The problem is that most people don’t have time these days to peel apart unnecessary layers of hype and jargon to get to the meat of what you’re really saying. If a client or colleague has to re-read your recommendation three times to understand the essence of what you’re actually recommending, that’s a problem. It doesn’t show how smart you are. It shows you don’t respect their time.
The truth is that we’re all pretty smart. Well, most of us. We know a smart strategy, idea or insight when we see it, hear it or read it. Wrapping up a bad recommendation in elegant wrapping with a beautiful bow on top doesn’t make it a better recommendation. Likewise, great thinking is great on its own. Don’t muddy a great idea by bogging it down just to show how many words you have in the arsenal.
This is also a big problem when social media types try to explain what they do. Tossing around things like “emerging media,” “social capital,” “open source” and the names of every social media platform on the Interweb as fast as you can just makes most people feel lost. I believe one reason more brands aren’t using social media initiatives is because we don’t talk about them in ways that are inviting. Instead we overwhelm them with a whirlwind of jargon.
To be clear, I’m not saying words aren’t important. I’m saying the opposite. Words ARE important. Be clear. I believe we’ll get more done that way.
*Image by Chris.