Do you Read Like A Nine Year Old?
Statistically, you do.
That's because the average reading age of people in the UK is nine.
Nine years old, man. Can you remember what you were up to when you were nine?
I was stressing over which Pokemon cards to trade and nailing Jesus' Hands Are Kind Hands on the recorder - what a tune, by the way.
To put a reading age of nine in context, books by David Walliams are aimed at this age group.
They've got titles like:
And, my 'favourite' -
... thrilling stuff.
So why does it matter?
It matters because, any time you communicate with your customers, you need to keep things simple.
Like, really simple.
Like, David-Walliams-novel-title simple.
If you don't, a large % of your audience won't get it.
And 'sounding clever' isn't worth that, is it?
But does using 'big words' actually make you sound clever and impress your audience?
Picture this: you're a high-flying CEO of an International financial investment company and you receive a sales email. Do you:
A) Want to sit and admire the use of articulate language while trying to decipher what they're trying to say?
B) Get to the point quickly and easily?
Even though you probably know a lot of 'big words', surely you'd prefer to read something that's easy to read. Nobody has time to work things out for themselves.
What's more, using 'big words' and jargon make you hard to trust
Think about a time you've been bombarded with jargon. How did it make you feel?
Intimidated? Pressured? Maybe even stupid?
People use jargon to hide bullshit. Technical names are typically used to make things sound better than they usually are.
You trust people you can relate to, so if you're not particularly articulate, then you won't really trust someone who is.
So get rid of all the fancy vocabulary you spent years learning in school and get back to basics.
Everyone will thank you for it.