Formal language has change an enourmous amount in the last 5 years. This has been driven by cutting-edge organisations that have a wide reach. Companies such as Facebook, Google and Apple are leading the way. Through their reach and their ability speed-up our life they are reducing the places where formal language is being used. This has happened in three areas:
- Talking as Friends. Google just released an update for Google chrome. The on-screen pop-up gave me 3 options – Install Now, Uninstall Now, and “Don’t bug me”. This is something your friend would say to you. This type of language is one way that the worlds largest and most influential companies builds familiarity with me. How are you doing this with your clients?
- Abbrviations are becoming part of our formal language. Today, every ‘phone has an App – non of them have Applications. Jargon is not jargon when everyone uses it.
- ‘Old School’ formal language is now being used only where you need to have an impact – Terms and Conditions, warnings and any other plce of legal speak. This contrast makes the use of formal language more pronounced.
This evolution is just another way that we try to cut through the clutter of mass communication.
How are you evolving your message to cut through?
As always, your comments appreciated.
Darren Fleming – Australia’s Corporate Speech Coach