Your 2016 Guide to Business Buzz Words

By Mary-Anne Amies

Love them or hate them buzz words seem to be a part of many people’s vocabulary. If you’ve managed to get your head around business marketing acronyms like SEO (search engine optimization), CRM (customer relationship management) and PPC (price per click), then the next biggest jargon challenge you face are buzz words!  These words change from year to year, but once a buzz word is deployed it seems to reach celebrity status with everyone finding an excuse to drop them into a sentence, blog headline or hashtag.

I’ve been in Brand Strategy meetings and heard multiple buzz words dropped into one sentence. If my memory serves me correctly, it was something like “We need to think outside of the square to leverage any white space opportunities, whilst fully capitalising on any low hanging fruit”.

To decipher this sentence and shed some light on some buzz words I’ve heard, please read on!


  • Low Hanging Fruit – Still used in 2016, I believe I was exposed to this phrase in 2009. Unfortunately the person who used it paired it with a hand gesture of squeezing two imaginary pieces of fruit, making it hard to keep a straight face when later repeating it. Low hanging fruit are the easy wins – the opportunities that will take minimal effort for you to action.
  • White Space – Arriving in 2010 to replace low hanging fruit as the ‘must drop into a sentence’ buzz word in the office. White space (which I liked to whisper for dramatic intent) is the gap in the market; it’s something that no one else is doing and gives you the chance to grow the market in both size and your share.
  • Think outside the Square – We all know what this one means but it doesn’t stop it from being used, almost redundantly to suggest we need to be creative to solve our current problem. We need to come up with a solution that everyone else isn’t doing. I know Karen likes to tell people ‘let’s imagine there is no square, let’s create a new one’!
  • Mind Shift  – Whether it is our organisation or our consumers, I often hear people talk about needing a mind shift. A mind shift needs a different approach to thinking inside our business or it’s about our consumers being educated about a new way to meet their needs that will become their new norm.
  • Disruption – this is probably the most contentious and over-used buzzword we heard in 2015. In Karen’s first blog for 2016 she predicted that disruption’s popularity may get replaced by ‘amplification’. In this article Tech Crunch takes a deep dive into the true meaning of this Buzz Word with examples from Google and Salesforce.
  • Amplification – this buzz word relates to the importance of your content marketing strategy. The insight is that it’s no longer enough to just be posting via your blog websites, and sharing great content. You must ‘amplify’. What is your ‘amplification’ plan for your content?
  • Reputation Management – This is tracking what people are saying about you online and proactively responding to feedback, to ensure your online reputation is positive and reflective of your brand.
  • H2H – You may have heard of B2C (business to customer) or B2B (business to business), well watch out for H2C (human to human) this year! It’s about businesses treating their customers with respect and like individuals (what a great idea!).
  • Viral Marketing – Creating and executing a promotional element that is so exciting that it is sent out by consumers through their networks (in other words spreading like a virus!)
  • Growth Hacking – Growth hacking is about finding innovative, inexpensive and often technical ‘hacks’ to significantly boost a company’s growth. I like the definition by Tom Treanor, Director of Content Marketing, Wrike.

“Growth hacking can include building innovative features into a product that lead users to share it virally, doing something unique and buzz-worthy that gets a lot of free press, doing large numbers of guest blog posts to blanket an industry with your brand’s content, or tapping into communities or social networks in ways that boost attention in massive — not incremental — ways.”

What are your predictions for 2016’s Buzz Words?



Bio: Mary-Anne Amies is the Founder of WiseUp Marketing and a Marketing Strategist and Digital Marketing Specialist with over 11 years experience working with major Australian brands and start-ups across Australia. As a regular guest on Think Bespoke’s blog, she provides insights to assist your marketing and digital strategy.