Which Form of Ad Speak Would You Kill in 2012?

By Kiran Aditham 

So, a few of your ad brethren/sistren have resolved to eliminate certain overused/annoying phrases from their lexicon (and yours) come 2012. As we wind down this year (yeesh, it went way too fast), let’s get some thoughts from a few industry people to see what they’d like to extinguish, on homepage and after the jump:

Conor Brady, Organic CCO, vows never to say the word “ecosystem” or “platform” in 2012. Or at least he’ll try.


Barbara Apple Sullivan, founder/managing partner of  Sullivan: “Best in class.” Not only is it not believable, it says absolutely nothing. Just what is ‘best’ and in what ‘class’? It’s simply an attempt to fill air time with words that sound good.”

Stephen Malbon, founder/CEO of BON: “Tipping point,” “Sunset that idea,” and “Greasy media.”

Barbara Lippert, curator of pop culture at GS&P: “Could you provide a deck of these ‘jargon words’ you’re referencing? First, we’d need to put one of the teams within our eco-system of hyper hives on it to curate the deck. But before we can even re-purpose the adoption process of this collaborative initiative, we would need to circle back to the aggregation of our forces on a more integrative venture and see if it’s actionable on any platform. That said, we tend to be media-agnostic, but we have a suspicion about where it should live. Will let you know by EOD.”

image via

Mike Doherty, president of Cole & Weber United, says he’d like to eliminate all phrases with the word “framework” in them as in “messaging framework and strategic framework. It’s a way of sounding organized and like you know what you are going to deliver when you don’t really know where you are going. My other biggie is that I would like to eliminate acronyms from my life, such as GTM, MLT and CMG.” Using acronyms is lazy, he says, adding, “If people don’t want to take time to say the whole name then they shouldn’t have a long name in the first place. It’s like talking in ‘txt.’”

Ignited’s  president/founder Eric Johnson has vowed to ban the following jargon from his vocabulary in 2012:

Incentivize: It’s a made up marketing word that’s used a lot, but it’s not a word.

Pivot: It’s overused, and it means “your start-up plan sucks, but we’ll figure out a better plan later.”

Cloud: Overused to describe everything on the internet.

Disintermediate: Old.  Easier and clearer ways to say it.

Gamify: Not everything needs to have game elements in it.