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If Matt Damon Repeats The Word Solution Should We Switch?

Another Davos. Noble causes chase ignoble dollars. Or is it ‘tother way round?

This year I see Matt Damon’s joint water.org efforts to bring fresh water to those in thirst.

Like many such projects I feel discomfort that the root causes of corruption, women’s rights and exploitation seem left untackled.

Still, vital airtime covered the Hollywood A-lister. And if you’ve seen the awesome House of Lies first season episode devoted to his charitable campaigns, a hearty fair play to him.

But then to his current messaging.

It felt a touch disjointed. There were some quality soundbite lines.

the water in Western toilets are cleaner than that which 650m people have access to for drinking

every 90 mins a child under 5 dies from a water-related plight

“for every dollar you invest in this area you get back four”

Really good lines – that last one a template that should be part of every b2b pitch – but in isolation, with no backup, unthreaded, not so great as they could’ve been.

I also got distracted by the repeating a couple of times of one particular word; solution.

Now normally, if there is a key key word or phrase you dearly want your audience to recall in the mist way after, you’re encouraged to drop it in over and over. Almost to the point of comedy.

So maybe it’s a good thing? *MattDamon=Solution*

Or maybe not.

Because is ‘solution’ now a mere nothingy kind of word?

What does it really mean? When a once fine word becomes the butt of buzzword bingo sheets a revision is required.

What do you think the “approval rating” would be for the word? As in where you tot up percentages of the fors and againsts, take the latter from the former and hope for a high number.

Are corporate dwellers now utterly tired of it? Hearing promises that such a word claims will be ushered in yet fail so miserably to materialise. To the extent it could even elicit balance-tipping negative reaction to derail you.

I’m reminded of when I mused on the alternatives we solution (sorry) sellers face from the tricky concept “change”.

Synonym’s abound; answer, way out, fix, improve. Metaphors too; swat, slay, progress, remove, end, begin, rise.

I recall too real company sales pushes I have witnessed where branding chosen was the rather unfortunate Nazi framing; “total” and “final” solution. Incredible.

So next time you’re dreaming up world-beating solutions, get your thesaurus cap on for max impact descriptions.

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