class #8

     In class number eight we learned about the second post-engagement principle, tone.  The best quote from the literature in my opinion was “Be careful to avoid corporate jargon, but you don’t want to sound like you’re trying too hard, either – that always comes across as phony. Talk to your audience as you might talk to a relative you don’t see too often – be friendly and familiar but also respectful …” (pp. 155-156, emphasis added).  In class, Mr. Abel used the term “broadband” as en example of corporate jargon that he uses every day in his other profession.  As students in his class, none of us knew that broadband was just another term for high speed internet.  After this example, it made this quote even more understandable and relatable.  Within certain limits, a conversational informal, casual, authentic tone is better received by social media audiences than formal, business/marketing language (jargon). 

     The 2012 Presidential Campaign case was an excellent example of how both sides used a certain “tone” in order to relate to the general public, and try to gain their vote.  The New York Times article was interesting because it showed how both campaigns used social media to lure younger voters.  The KLM Royal Dutch Airlines case was awesome.  The company also used the listening principle to connect with their customers.  And finally, last but not least, the class favorite, Mike and Ike case.  Although not a fan of the candy myself, the New York Times article and their facebook page sparked my interest and made me a fan of the brand.  It is a fun, clever campaign that I’m glad worked for the candy company. 

     In conclusion, replace jargon with common language whenever possible.  Think like your audiences think, speak like your audience speaks.  Listening to your audience and understanding them is key to communicating with them in an authentic, real manner. 

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3 thoughts on “class #8

  1. I thought that you did a great job summarizing Thursday’s class. When the term “broadband” was thrown out there, there many of us had no idea what it meant. I love the link that you posted in your blog, it was perfect. It is so true that there is English and then there is business English. And many times the average Joe might not completely understand business English. There were really great examples listed and many of them I wouldn’t have known what they meant if there wasn’t a rewrite underneath.

  2. Carole, I’m glad you enjoyed the link. I wasn’t so sure about it at first, because the first thing I read was the title of the article, but I’m glad you found it useful!

  3. I think it’s interesting that you liked the Mike & Ike strategy…I thought it was kind of silly, myself, because I didn’t see how it was relevant or useful to the brand, or anyone at all for that matter. I can see how it possibly was interesting to some people, but it didn’t make wonder anything except (1) what does that have to do with the candy, and in turn – (2) they must be desperate. This also pertains to the class from this day, as we discussed (as seen in par. 1 from your blog): “Be careful to avoid corporate jargon, but you don’t want to sound like you’re trying too hard, either – that always comes across as phony. Talk to your audience as you might talk to a relative you don’t see too often – be friendly and familiar but also respectful …” (pp. 155-156, emphasis added). Because the topic of Mike & Ike “breaking up” had nothing to do with anything, I couldn’t (and still can’t) overlook the fact that it was completely irrelevant and deem Mike & Ike as yet another company declining quickly due to the economy. Mike AND/OR Ike, quite frankly…I just don’t care.

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