Buzzwords We Love To Hate

Screen shot 2013 02 14 at 5.59.52 PMYour guru called, and he thinks you need to produce linkbait for reputation management purposes. Can I get an “ugh” up in here? I know I’m not alone in thinking that some of the latest marketing jargon is about as appealing as cold french fries. To be fair, we’d be lying if we said that we weren’t huge fans of some of the marketing jargon out there. Is there any better way to describe SMarketing content that’s mapped to the sales funnel than TOFu, MOFu and BOFu? A quickly-changing inbound marketing landscape requires new words that might not be recognized by Webster’s. However, that doesn’t mean they need to be super irritating:

1. Guru

Marketers don’t always have the reputation as the most humble group, which is why every Twitter profile that doesn’t belong to a “Belieber” is run by a “social media guru.” Not everyone can be a guru, and if you have to tell people that you’re an elite teacher, you’re probably not. If you haven’t seen satirical news source The Onion’s take on how social media gurus are perceived by the outside world, it’s well worth a watch. (Link, please)

2. Reputation Management

This jargon is so hot right now. In fact, 1,375,000 searched for it on Google in the month of December 2012 alone.

google search trend for seo jargon

image credit: majux

In case it wasn’t clear, a comprehensive inbound marketing strategy that involves content creation and social media is a really effective way to manage your reputation.

3. Linkbait

Back when SEO was a distinct, stand-alone strategy, linkbait was the concept of creating really great content like videos, infographics and smart blog articles, that other website owners wanted to link to. It’s still a thing, but just it’s better described as a solid content marketing strategy. Even though social shares now carry SEO weight, you don’t really hear anyone talking about “+1 bait,” do you?

4. Increase Visibility Across Business Silos

Am I not the only one who thought of silos full of grain on farms across America when I heard this phrase? Apparently, it’s a pretty trendy way to describe departments. Like your content team, design and development department, and social media managers. It’s hard to escape the fact that it’s got a pretty agricultural aspect to it, which is why it made Gartner’s list of the gibberish that’s most effectively able to “repress meaning.” Fancy talk for worst jargon ever:

Screen shot 2013 02 14 at 5.53.35 PM

image credit: software advice blog

5. Return On Influence

If you’re concerned about Return on Influence as a real inbound marketing metric, you might be the problem with marketers. I’m only joking a little bit in this case: 73% of CEOs think that marketers lack credibility and 77% are sick of hearing talk about “brand equity.” The truth is, most good CEOs don’t care about flaky metrics that are difficult to measure and have questionable worth. They care about the metric that actually deserves to be abbreviated as ROI, return on investment. Make sure you’re focused on real ROI.

6. Social Media Engagement

We have nothing against social media engagement. Your brand should work actively to post high-quality visual content on social media channels that drives shares, comments, Likes, pins and ReTweets. Your website’s SEO and Facebook Edgerank will bloom accordingly. However, engagement isn’t necessarily correlated with ROI from social media marketing and it’s not the only inbound marketing metric you need to monitor. In our humble opinion, engagement is the one metric that gets too much attention from marketers.

7. SoLoMo

Social, localized, and mobile marketing are all great concepts, and we’re sure the future of connecting with consumers will involve an intersection of these three concepts. However, don’t you think they could have come up with a better name for it?

8. Web 2.0

Web 2.0 was coined in 1999 to describe the fact that the internet had changed from a whole bunch of static web pages, that could only be reached by typing in their entire URL, to the growing prevalence of search engines. Sorry, but this Google phenomenon is now 14 years old. It’s a freshman in high school. Can we stop talking about it, please?

9. #TeamFollowBack

Following others back on Twitter is a very nice thing to do. But if you announce it in your Twitter bio, in 3 or 4 ways that include #FollowBack and #TeamFollowBack, you might be construed as a little desperate. Sorry.

10. Above-the-Fold

We’re all about marketers and web developers who choose to optimize their website for an optimal user experience. However, it’s not especially helpful to advise others to design “above the fold.” For one, if you know where the fold is, please tell me. It’s difficult to say, given that your prospects could be accessing your website using 10 different smart phones and tablets, all of which have different screen dimensions. It’s so 2012, and all the cool kids have moved on to talking about responsive web design instead.

What pieces of marketing jargon do you hope to never, ever hear again? 

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