Engage in industry conversations using a 50-word dictionary to shape your storytelling

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Marketing professionals today need to reach out with consistent messages in multiple channels.  The demand for advanced story telling is greater than ever and demand is across a broad variety of channels. Steering such a consistency effort for a large company is hard. Here are some ideas on how you can drive consistency around 50 key words defining your marketing dictionary.

Industry terminology is evolving fast

All markets are becoming fast moving markets as they get a larger digital influence. A key characteristic of fast moving markets is a continuous evolution of the terminology and words. Using old words make you stand out in a negative way. Some of the words in play are industry buzzwords without ambiguities. Others are words that are central in a context but where you have options to choose the best words.

Your marketing impact can grow if your storytelling uses the right words.  A mix of hot words and words associated with you is a good starting point. The best way to secure consistent use is to issue and evolve a company specific “marketing word dictionary”.

The synonym trap create inconsistent communication

Large organizations have many individuals involved in the content creation activities. With a growing number of independent writers you can expect the numbers of synonyms used to grow. The outcome is a paradox where multiple synonyms describe a single meaning or context. When articulating business change you can talk about evolution, transformation, transition, transmogrification etc. as an example. By using multiple synonyms your message consistency get diluted.

The story elements created by different groups also become hard to combine into a bigger picture. You can come across as a loosely coupled conglomerate rather than a company with well aligned entities. As a larger business you often want to get your complete capabilities to come across.

Leverage Search Engine Optimization potential

A large share of your market communication today takes place in the digital channel.  This channel needs suitable Search Engine Optimization (SEO) considerations to deliver expected results. When faced with a range of synonyms to select from consider searching for the one with largest SEO traction. Securing a large digital audience starts by securing you use the words the readers use when searching for you.

Establish a corporate marketing word dictionary and keep it alive

Defining a marketing word dictionary is not a question of recreating a dictionary. It is about selecting a narrow set of words with well-defined refresh cycles. All content creators can leverage such a dictionary immediately in their content creation. As a suggestion you can aim for 50 key words defining your communication needs right know.

Good questions to ask when crafting these key words are

  1. Which industry buzzwords are carrying the largest news in our industry 0- Great words for newsjacking
  2. Which business terms do we use to get a cross our commercial messages – more stable but nevertheless relevant for consistency
  3. Which words do we aspire to own – harder to gain traction with, but larger impact when successful.
  4. Which of the current words we use are running out of steam – Retire words before your readership retire you as a source.
  5. Do we have a clear idea or which search words that are central for our stories – vital to tap into this potential.
  6. Which acronyms can we replace with real words – to secure our messages get across better

Additional reading 

For additional reading in this area consider the following:

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