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Discard Weak Language

Toss the following words and phrases from your vocabulary and business writing for more effective communication.

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Discard Weak Language

  1. 1. Discard Weak Language Helpful hints for public relations and marketing professionals
  2. 2. Remove the following words and phrases from your vocabulary in your business writing
  3. 3. just Reason: a filler word; it does not add value to your sentence Result: a tighter, more direct sentence
  4. 4. really ~ very ~ a lot Reason: used for verbal emphasis; these words do not translate well into written text Result: a stronger message “The rock is really hard.” vs. “The rock is hard.”
  5. 5. perhaps ~ maybe sort of ~ kind of Reason: communicates uncertainty and vagueness Result: a clear and explicit message
  6. 6. quite Reason: sometimes it adds meaning and sometimes adds fluff Hint: Know the difference and when in doubt, discard
  7. 7. amazing Reason: overused Hint: If everything is amazing, then nothing is
  8. 8. literally Reason: overused and usually fluff Hint: Use to clarify meaning, to explain that you are not joking when it is perceived that you are
  9. 9. stuff ~ things ~ got Reason: informal and generic Result: a clarified sentence when replaced with a more descriptive word
  10. 10. you Reason: implies that you are writing to AND about the reader; renders statement otherwise false Hint: Do not use when making general statements
  11. 11. feel Reason: convolutes message – write what is actually being felt Result: emotions are conveyed with colorful language
  12. 12. I think ~ I believe Reason: an opinion Result: the message is straightforward
  13. 13. as Reason: implies you can do two things at once Result: clarifies sentence when replaced with proper word “Take a drink as you lie down.” vs. “Take a drink, then lie down.”
  14. 14. like Reason: if it is LIKE something, it is NOT that thing; makes writing tedious "Using these words is like baking with spoiled milk.” Hint: Give accurate descriptions and use correct verbs to reduce the need to use it
  15. 15. used to Reason: fewer words is always better Hint: Replace used to with a past tense verb “She used to write fiction.” vs. “She wrote fiction.”
  16. 16. To learn more about McKinney & Associates, visit www.mckpr.com McKinney & Associates was founded in 1990 with a commitment to social justice that has prevailed for nearly 25 years. From the beginning, McKinney has passionately and skillfully practiced public relations with a conscience for local, national and international organizations.

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