Turn Your Technical Jargon into Human-Friendly Content3 min read

Jef van de Graaf
Jef van de Graaf™
June 6, 2024

Let’s face it: technical jargon is like a secret language. It’s great for impressing colleagues but can leave your customers scratching their heads.

If your goal is to connect with the most people, you need to turn that technical jargon into human-friendly content. Here’s how to do it without losing your wit or your audience’s interest.

Why Simplify?

First things first, why should you bother simplifying your language?

Well, unless your target audience consists solely of experts in your field, chances are your technical terms are flying right over their heads.

Here’s why you should consider simplifying:

  • Clarity: Clear language helps prevent misunderstandings.
  • Engagement: Simple, straightforward content keeps readers interested.
  • Accessibility: Makes your content accessible to a wider audience.

It Shows Your Know Your Audience

Before you start converting your technical jargon, it’s crucial to understand who your audience is.

Ask yourself:

  • Who are they? Are they beginners, intermediates, or experts?
  • What do they know? Gauge their existing knowledge.
  • What do they need to know? Focus on the information they’ll find useful.

Once you know your audience, you can tailor your language to meet their needs.

Strategies for Simplifying Technical Jargon

Feeling stuck? Here are some effective strategies to help you transform technical jargon into engaging, human-friendly content:

1. Use Analogies and Metaphors

Analogies and metaphors can make complex concepts more relatable.

  • Example: “Think of your computer’s RAM as a desk. The bigger the desk, the more papers (tasks) you can spread out and work on at once.”

2. Break Down Complex Ideas

Divide complex information into smaller, manageable chunks.

  • Example: Instead of diving into all the technical details of blockchain, start with a simple explanation of what it is and why it’s useful.

3. Use Bullet Points and Lists

Bullet points make information easy to scan and digest.

  • Examples: What is blockchain? How does it work? Why is it important?

4. Avoid Acronyms and Abbreviations

Spell out acronyms the first time you use them.

  • Example: “Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is crucial for improving your website’s visibility.”

5. Incorporate Visuals

Diagrams, infographics, and videos can help explain complex topics.

  • Example: Use a flowchart to show how data moves through a network.

Real-World Examples

Let’s look at how some companies successfully turned their technical jargon into human-friendly content:

  • Apple: Known for its simple, relatable language, Apple explains tech features in ways everyone can understand.
  • HubSpot: Uses blog posts and videos to break down marketing concepts into easy-to-understand content.
  • Slack: Their onboarding process is a masterclass in making technical setup seem effortless.

Testing and Feedback

After simplifying your content, it’s important to test it. Gather feedback from a diverse group:

  • Usability Testing: See how real users interact with your content.
  • Surveys and Feedback Forms: Ask your audience if they found the content clear and helpful.
  • Analytics: Track engagement metrics to see if the changes improve comprehension and retention.

The Balance Between Simplicity and Accuracy

While simplifying, ensure you don’t lose accuracy. Here’s how to strike a balance:

  • Maintain Key Information: Don’t strip away essential details.
  • Use Technical Terms Sparingly: Introduce them when necessary and provide clear definitions.
  • Context is Key: Always provide context for technical information.

Struggling to Humanize Your Website’s Messaging?

Turning technical jargon into human-friendly content is about making your message accessible without dumbing it down. By understanding your audience, using clear language, and testing your content, you can ensure that your message is both engaging and informative.

Remember, the goal is to enlighten, not to baffle. So, start translating that technical jargon and watch your audience grow!

Feel free to reach out if you need help simplifying your content. I build, operate, and manage websites, ensuring your message resonates with everyone.

p.s.,

I was an English teacher for 2 years in Japan and a freelance B2B copywriter since 2017 (that means I’m damn good simplifying language, I think?).

Jef van de Graaf

Jef van de Graaf™

Creative Director at Build An Online Business

Jef van de Graaf™ is your go-to expert for turning small business websites into lead-generating machines. Starting his journey as a freelance B2B copywriter in 2017, Jef has mastered the art of crafting compelling website content that drives clicks and conversions.

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