How to freshen up your business words.
I’m tempted to wish you a ‘Happy New Year’, but given it’s almost February and you’ve no doubt already been inundated ad-nauseum with ‘New Year this’, ‘New Year that’, at every scroll, I’ll skip the inevitable eye-rolling and just get on with it, eh? Anyway, let’s all accept that 2017 IS going to be THE year, and move on..
I must admit, there’s something about a new year that makes me keen to make changes, declutter and start again. Yesterday when we returned from a 3 week break I immediately began culling clothing, toys and loads of other ‘crap’ before I unpacked. Ahhh, it felt so good! Plus, after much holiday trashy magazine reading the kids will no doubt be eagerly devouring my new and improved healthy lunch box creations well into… um.. March..
Ok, enough about decommissioning your odd socks and switching wheat with quinoa* and on to my zone of genius; words!
Anytime is a good time to freshen up your words, right?
What words? Words on your website, marketing materials, Facebook posts. Words you speak – out of your mouth, in a real conversation with a real person! (Gasp!)
Which words? Take a look at the Most Frequently Used Words sprinkled through your marketing copy; think about the ‘go-to’ words you spout to describe what you do.
Why? A new word or two can breathe new life into stale sentences, get you off auto-pilot when describing your business and even boost your scrabble score. Pretty cool, huh?
How? Now, here’s the fun part! While you could sizzle your brain thinking of new, alternative words to your worn-out ones, I recommend plugging www.thesaurus.com into your favourites and prepare to be amazed!
While it sounds like a bookish dinosaur, a thesaurus is, (according to www.thesaurus.com) a dictionary of synonyms and antonyms. Bang in a word and you’ll get a super helpful list of new words that have the same meaning, or the opposite meaning of your original word – pfooof – nerdy magic!
Let me cut to the chase: Let’s say you’re a naturopath and you use the word ‘wellness’ a lot. I’m not saying delete every ‘wellness’ that appears across your copy, rather consider swapping out a couple of instances with an alternative, such as ‘health’, ‘wellbeing’, ‘zest’, ‘vigour’, ‘optimum vitality’ and so on.
Improve ‘improve’ with a sparkly ‘boost’, ‘sky-rocket’, ‘advance’, or ‘lift’. (Once you get started, it’s quite addictive, no?)
A word of caution though – while it’s fun to play with words and learn some new ones, you still want your message to be easily understood. You want to call a spade a spade, right? Too many fancy-schmancy words can derail your message and may turn some client or readers away. For example, I could’ve written ‘a word of circumspection’, but ‘caution’ works just fine – so why change it?
Enjoy your words! Explore some shiny new ones, be brave, and most of all be YOU!
*I know! Quinoa is so 2013, perhaps I should investigate teff.. Oh, gosh, will the kids get teased about the quinoa thing?
OK, I’m off to google teff recipes…
(Of course, if you need help to make your words fresh n funky, drop me a line here.)