Choose short, simple, easy-to-pronounce terms
Which of these food additives is more dangerous: Hnegripitrom or Magnalroxate?
Most people said the more difficult to pronounce Hnegripitrom was the most hazardous, according to a recent study by Hyunjin Song and Norbert Schwarz at the University of Michigan.
But neither is really a food additive. (In fact, neither is really a word!) So why does one seem more dangerous?
‘Fluent’ words sell more.
The shorter and easier-to-pronounce your words and ideas, the more readers will respond to them, according to a new study by Princeton University psychologists Adam L. Alter and Daniel M. Oppenheimer. They found that:
- “Fluently named” companies outperform hard-to-pronounce ones. A $1,000 investment in a group of stocks with easy-to-pronounce names initially yielded $112 more in profit than the same investment in a group with difficult names.
- Pronounceable ticker symbols (PER) outperformed those that were not (GTS) after a day of trading.
- People are more likely to believe a saying that rhymes (“woes unite foes”) than one that means the same thing but doesn’t rhyme (“woes unite enemies”). “What sobriety conceals, alcohol reveals” is more believable than “What sobriety conceals, alcohol unmasks.”
Cut Through the Clutter
How fluent are your words? In readability research, word length and familiarity show up, again and again, as the top two predictors of readability.
So how do you make sure your words are short, familiar and fluent?
You’ll learn how long your paragraphs, sentences and words should be … get tips and tricks for hitting those targets … and use a cool, free tool to measure and manage readability.
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