Buzzwords to know and use in 2009

We love to write. Good writing is good public relations – a skill always listed as one of the top requirements for a solid PR recruit. There is nothing more satisfying to read (or receive) than a well-written release, which can dramatically increase sales, generate greater awareness, and enhance the image of a business or product.

But in modern English we’re seeing an increasingly new use of verbiage to describe the times, because language is the clearest living indicator of social change. It must be said that English native speakers (and especially Americans) are as guilty as anyone when it comes to concocting new words, which has purists quaking in their boots.

Case in point: the New Oxford American Dictionary recently announced their 2008 Word of the Year: hypermiling, defined as an “attempt to maximize gas mileage by making fuel-conserving adjustments to one’s car.” Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has his own term for the practice – ecodriving. Both make perfect sense to me. In 2009, the media will be using more recession inspired words, such as recessionistas and frugalistas (both of which derived from fashionista, a term coined by Stehen Fried in his 1993 Thing of Beauty biography of model Gia). Other words to watch: localism and ecohacking. If language doesn’t progress, it simply dies.

So why should we care?  Marketers need to keep an eagle-eye out for these new linguistic innovations, not only because they resonate with the market and the media, but also, for SEO purposes, to help jump search engine marketing.

Lackluster words to avoid? Check out Susan Gunelius’ article here.

By: Chelsea Orth, KWE group


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