Wednesday, December 14, 2011

The Words We Choose To Use...

We should be cognizant about our audiences’ backgrounds, training and educational/cultural experiences and perceptions, because the words we use in our demo delivery (and Discovery conversations) can have strong impact on perceptions of our offerings and solutions. 

 In a study done on potato chip bag labeling, it was found that there were two general types of packaging, with respect to vocabulary:

The first used 8th grade vocabulary and focused on appearing to be “plain-speaking” and “genuine” – these packages were for lower-end chips (Lays, Utz, etc.) and targeted buyers of same.

The second packaging used 10th-11th grade vocabulary with phrases like “hand-raked” and “crafted” – this packaging was used for the higher-price chips (Boulder, Kettle, Terra, etc.). 

Not surprising, perhaps, but fascinating in any case!

The study was done by Dan Jurafsky, at the Stanford University Department of Linguistics.

No comments: