How to cut jargon from your business writing

Noted by Emily on 15.11.11

Trade secrets

How do you create engaging copy? Cut the jargon and keep it simple. Here are our top tips for getting rid of business speak.

'Cut it out' written in magnetic lettersTime to get rid of the waffle and make your business writing more compelling

In our work we come across some shocking jargon - from the nonsensical to the ridiculously over-used. The good news is that it’s easy to cut jargon from your business writing. Here’s how:

1. Think about your audience

To reach your audience effectively you need to write for them. Think about how much they know about the topic, and replace jargon with simple explanations. For example, instead of writing ‘our deliverables are’ simply say ‘we are going to’.

2. Cut out technical terms

Will your reader understand technical terms, industry references or abbreviations? If not, cut them out. Alternatively, you could include technical explanations in a separate fact box, rather than the main text.

3. Remove unnecessary words

Go through your writing and remove unnecessary words. Jargon usually equals waffle so get rid of it. Why say ‘think outside the box’ when you can use ‘be creative’? Four words are definitely not better than two.

4. Get feedback

Get someone else to look over your writing and give you feedback. This works best if it’s someone who knows nothing about the subject - they’ll be able to tell you whether it’s simple and easy to follow.

Ask them to highlight any jargon they find. Then re-write the piece to get rid of it. The end result will be effective, engaging copy.

Would you like some help creating compelling copy? Get in touch.