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Say What?

Don't confuse customers or prospects with overuse of industry acronyms.

Every industry has its own set of words, acronyms and codes that serve as verbal shorthand. Some of this jargon is fairly well-known, but most of it isn't. For example, most people know that a "spot" on television means a short commercial message. But how many know what a "donut" means in TV-language? (It's a commercial message where the beginning and end remain the same from showing to showing but the middle--the hole in the donut--is changed frequently.) Your industry has its own jargon, too.

It's important to identify your specialized terms and make sure your prospect understands them. Be especially careful of acronyms--those collections of initials that are taking over our language. For instance: "We are offering you only Bb+ rated or better NYC GO's, so your 1099 will be very simple." This may be perfectly clear to a stockbroker or an accountant, but what does it mean to you and me--or the prospect?

Excerpted from Creative Selling: Boost your B2B sales

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