THESE B2B BUZZWORDS GET ON YOUR TITS
If you're working in the realm of creating, editing or publishing content, there will probably be a few words you find abhorrent to your very being.
Words that fly in the face of the good practice principles you might hold dear.
Words which make you do a face when you hear them.
These vessels of corporate lingo are commonly known as 'jargon' or 'buzzwords'.
Whilst the use of some jargon can be appropriate for certain industries and audiences, what's left is a playlist of utter twaddle; twaddle which can permeate like a burp that gets stuck half way up your throat.
I asked some people whose business is to put lots of words together in an effective order what their 'Room 101' B2B buzzword would be.
Didn't take long for the nominations to come rolling into my inbox:
A state in which two or more things work together in a particularly fruitful way that produces an effect greater than the sum of their individual effects. Expressed also as "the whole is greater than the sum of its parts."
“Hello, mate! Long time no see. What you up to these days?”
“Yeah, it’s been ages. I’m a copywriter. Basically, I work with different businesses and write words for them.”
“Ah, right. So you work in synergy to produce optimum results.”
And with that, upon the moment that the word synergy is used, the world of B2B detaches itself from the real world and touches base in alternate universe of low hanging fruits where growth hacking meetings encourage thinking outside of the box to cut through pain points with the aim of achieving absolute alignment for the implementation of strategic communication with millennials.
Synergy doesn’t belong in real life.
Informed opinion leaders and the 'go-to' people in their field of expertise.
Thought leader? WHAT? Someone who leads thoughts? Straight away I'm thinking about cults, mind control, the Demon Headmaster and all sorts of other bad things.
At least "influencer" (which I also hate) is only influencing your thoughts and not trying to lead them off on a merry dance, a bit like the Pied Piper.
I don't want my thoughts to be led, thanks very much.
And I don't very much like the idea of other people having their thoughts led either.
A retailing strategy that spreads across multiple omnichannel payment points and delivers a seamless customer experience.
My god! Omnichannel's bastard child. We were getting a bit crazy with the omni-everything already.
What does it even mean? Is it the all-seeing eye of retail? The — ahem — omniscient voice of a dystopian shopping nightmare? An eternal commercial break?
We get it, people are just as likely to shop digitally as they are to walk into a bricks-and-mortar store these days. So why not just tell retailers they should be catering to this in plain language?
But that would be too easy. Let's cook up a catchy buzzword for it instead.
(of a product, idea, etc.) featuring new methods; advanced and original.
This word is particularly meh. Massively overused to the point it has no impact whatsoever.
In most cases, the product or service isn't innovative at all. And if it is, just plonking an 'innovative' label on it definitely isn't the best way to sell it.
The act of travelling from one place to another, especially when involving a
considerable distance; a trip.
For me, the word "journey" has been used far too many times in B2B tech copy.
"Journey" implies that the path to fixing my problem is the important bit. It's not.
Particularly for low-touch software like SaaS, I just want to pay a company to solve my problem as quickly as possible: track my taxes easier, automate the bulk of proposal writing, or monitor the health of my website.
The only destination "start your journey here" leads me to, is a competitor's website.
The formation of ideas or concepts.
Ideation refers to the process of creating new ideas. Unnecessary words like ideation ruin the English language. Stop it!
If an idea, plan, or story has legs, it is likely to be successful or to continue.
Trying to pick just one buzzword or phrase is tough when, frankly, there's so much tripe to choose from.
This though. This is a phrase which has emerged as another idiom that is fast becoming over-used by people who can't just say "let's see if it works" instead.
Also, "let's see if it has legs" has something very Gareth Cheeseman about it.
If some ideas or plans truly had legs, I'm sure a lot of them would run away from their corporate captors.