Jargon from experts

Jargon from experts

Engaging top of funnel

Look, none of us is perfect. If you look round this site, you’ll find imperfections. In fact, I’ll send a unique, handcrafted Highbrook Media notebook to anyone who points one out. We all need to be edited. This piece needs editing.

But just for the fun of it today, I analysed the writing of the people who sell words. Their writing should surely be near-perfect. It is, after all, what they are selling.

The examples below suggest otherwise. Some have wobbly English – but many show a deeper failure to create simple, resonant text. Lumpy, ponderous sentences, statements of the very obvious, jargon and clichés are everywhere. There are, it seems, plenty of people who use the phrase ‘content is in our DNA’ without irony.

Because I am also far from flawless, I will not name the perpetrators, as long as they give me at least 10 LinkedIn endorsements.

There is a more serious point. The content marketing industry, of which I am a small part, spends a great deal of time pontificating on writing and filmmaking. Yet its own output is sometimes far from sweet. A little less talk and a little more quality would go a long way.

Here we go:

"If they’re not delivering top of funnel or helping to support low funnel activities, then there’s a big risk of missing corporate revenue goals."

Jargon piled on jargon. Low funnel activities are illegal in several Eastern European countries.

"Marketing organizations can use content to activate late-funnel conversations and consideration by delivering relevant information to specific customer watering holes."

More jargon. Funnels AND watering holes?

"Surely there needs to be more education about how these departments can work together as complimentary functions to create the most engaging content experiences for customers."

Apart from the wrong sort of ‘complimentary’, the phrase ‘engaging content experiences’ is puzzling – is this otherwise known as reading?

"Our 9 p’s of Branded content is a guideline for giving change that initial shove in the right direction it so desperately needs.

"Branded content that imparts wisdom and inspiration in a meaningful and memorable way can enhance your company’s notoriety considerably."

Ponderous and notorious.

"As part of the launch of the Apple Watch this week, Apple have updated it’s Apple Watch pages on it’s website."

Lordy, not only do we not know the difference between possessive and a contraction, we don’t really get singular and plural.

"Content is in our DNA."


"The desire to keep pushing the boundaries to deliver better work with greater results. This is our DNA."


"Digital in our DNA"

Clichés are in our chromosomes.

"Quality content all the way then. The approach I'm trying to take is creating 'cornerstone' content which is long form and evergreen. Unfortunately I wasn't blessed with great writing skills so I've teamed up with great content writer, worth paying as he can produce it much quicker and to a higher standard than I."

Me, I love an evergreen, long-form cornerstone.

"Writing is the root of all content creation."

No. Give me another statement of the obvious.

"In order for your content to be taken seriously by others, it needs to be well written."

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