Die, Epic, Ninja Words, Die


Die, Epic, Ninja Words, Die

Homer’s Odyssey was epic.

You’re not.

Help end the assault of words full of sound and fury, signifying nothing. Examples include:

  • Epic
  • Ninja
  • Guru
  • Awesomeness
  • Skillz

Why kill words like these from your marketing copy, blog posts, Twitter bios, etc.?

1. People laugh at you. Not with you, at you. And since your friends and family don’t understand what you do for a living — ’cause hell if you know — the best you could come up with was ninja — none of them can tell you straight up, “You know you sound like a douchebag, right?”*
Boy Ninja Costume from Halloweencostumes4u.com
2. You can tell yourself the laughter of strangers doesn’t matter because you really ARE an epic ninja guru with awesomeness skillz, but a) it isn’t true and b) overconfidence can lead to mistakes.

3. They’re imprecise. If you want to impress potential clients with your expertise or enthusiasm, use words like expertise and enthusiasm. If you have no expertise or enthusiasm, slang does not make you appear more qualified.

4. Are you really a child’s Halloween costume for a living? Five 5-year-old ninjas rang my doorbell on Halloween. Perhaps you should reconsider your personal brand.

5. If you don’t know exactly how to describe your skillz, try out the Title Generator. I’m sure several of them would apply.

Which epic, ninja words are on your crap list?

*Douchebag is a word that may need to die. For many, it has replaced hipster, a now-nebulous word for “person you don’t like.” It’s better to be specific, creative with descriptions. For example, when describing your ex, isn’t it more interesting to say he was an “arrogant, small-minded slug” than merely a “douchebag?”

Arienne Holland is the Director of Marketing and Customer Experience at Raven. She divides her time between outreach, writing, teaching and understanding developers. Before Raven, Arienne spent more than a decade as an editor and graphic designer for Gannett. She was a 2010 Pulitzer Prize Finalist for team breaking news journalism. She likes bread, books and bourbon.

More about Arienne Holland | @RavenArienne

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