top of page

Words matter!

Updated: Dec 2, 2023

Words matter

Some years ago I was invited to a marketing meeting at the Nonprofit I was working at. This was not uncommon given my many years in marketing and advertising (career #1).

The discussion was words.

  • What words help to tell our story?

  • What words bring our listener/viewer/follower into the story?

  • What words share the emotion involved in our mission?

  • What words best describe the importance of our mission?

One word that came up caused some disagreement.

The word was relentless — as in relentlessly looking for a cure.

I LOVE this word as I interpret it to mean–continuous, persistent or constant

Others in the room did not like this word and viewed it as grim, inexorable, stern, unappeasable, unforgiving, unrelenting and implacable.

By the way, BOTH of these definitions came from the dictionary.

In the end, we did not use the word. Although, based on LinkedIn, I totally view myself as relentless in pursuing great things for the nonprofits we work with!

“Someone who is relentless is determined to do something and refuses to give up. They will continue to pursue a goal, continually overcoming obstacles and creating new paths”

Discussing the words you use is critical.

  1. For Branding

  2. For Messaging

  3. For Focus

  4. For Outreach

It is also a fabulous exercise for groups (not just marketing teams; but, you should share the results with your marketing team).

Just getting everyone focused on words. Words that matter SO MUCH you can add focus and fun to any meeting.

Why does this particularly matter this time of year?

As you all get ready to work on year-end appeals, you might choose to have an umbrella theme.

Like..In Relentless Pursuit of Cancer Cures (no joke, this is what University of Miami Sylvester Cancer institute is using this year and I LOVE IT)

This Umbrella theme will serve to help you position the story you want to tell.

The appeal letter I received used this fantastic theme to open the door to a story of a young woman battling a serious form of Leukemia. On the side they included facts about how great their cancer center is. And used beautiful full color imagery of the young lady and her family.

So, what are the words in this theme that you would want each person in your team to use in all communications?

  1. Relentless

  2. Cancer Cures

This should be shared with your team. Agree on the words and find a way to include them in all year end messaging/communications/social.

As consultants to nonprofits, we are working with ALL of our clients on their messaging for the year-end appeals/communications/social.

Need help? Drop me a line

Want to know more about, the Team, The Kat or the Mouse–Take a look at our website

Post script

After the meeting mentioned in the beginning I ordered magnets for my team. On them they said “I am relentless”

I still have some—If you want one-just send me a note 🙂

Yes ,I  am Relentless

Read this Blog also-- Oh No, the Funder Said No!

59 views1 comment

Recent Posts

See All

1 Comment

I had one of your relentless signs at work, but lost it when my station was moved. Next time I see you, you can give me another one. 😀

bottom of page