Don’t fill your writing with bizspeak

Bizspeak (using jargon, ‘empty’ marketing phrases or business buzzwords) is an easy habit to fall into, but a dangerous one. Your content risks being difficult to understand and potential customers can be turned off by what appears to be nonsensical sentences.

It’s a good idea to run your content (websites, proposals, emails, leaflets and anywhere else you write business information) through a bizspeak checker and replace phrases like ‘ducks in a row’ with ‘organise things’, or ‘on the same page’ with ‘in agreement’. To help you combat bizspeak in your communications, The Harvard Business Review have listed a ‘bizspeak blacklist’.

Some of the phrases they list are probably still acceptable, if only because they are now so well known they’ve moved beyond bizspeak and into general usage. Others though should be weeded out of your writing. As the article says:

Writing plainly means expressing ideas as straightforwardly as you can — without sacrificing meaning or tone. Think of it as bringing your written voice into line with your spoken voice.

Bizspeak may seem like a convenient shorthand, but it suggests to readers that you’re on autopilot, thoughtlessly using boilerplate phrases that they’ve heard over and over. Brief, readable documents, by contrast, show care and thought — and earn people’s attention.

Harvard Business Review

Customers respond to plain-language correspondence. If you’re worried your writing is putting off potential buyers, talk to us.

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