Neochanging Words for Persuasionation

by Lou

When Noble prize winning economist Paul Krugman called certain low-level employees at mortgage services “robo-signers”. He created a word that puts a strong picture in your head.

Years ago, 7-Up created the word “un-cola” to put in their advertising so they could compete with Coke and Pepsi.

Robert Dilts coined the term Transderivational Morphology to describe the process of changing a root word by adding prefixes or suffixes that normally wouldn’t be applied to that word in order to create something new. He used this in therapy to change the intensity of words that clients habitually used in order to change their states.

And you can do the same to make your advertising more interesting and more persuasive:

1. Make a list of words associated with your business or product. These could be nouns, adjectives, or verbs.

2. Start adding prefixes (from the list below) to your list of words, then go to the suffixes.

3. Once you find a new word that resonates with your mind, you can be sure it will have the same effect on others.

4. Test the word(s) in your ads.

Here is a list of some prefixes and suffixes:

neo-, un-, inter-, re-, non-, com-, con-, syn-, im-, trans-, ex-, de-, para-, meta-, co-, robo-, ambi-, aero-, anti-, agri/argo-, aqua-, aristo-, bio-,circum-, cosmo-, counter-, cyber-, fore-, geo-, mega-, metro-, multi-, nano-, omni-, pre-, post-, pseudo-, sub-, tele-, trans-, ultra-

-ment, -ion, -ian, -ist, -ism, -ia, -ness, -able, -al, -an, -ful, -ic, -ure, -ive, ation, -ly, -ing, -er, -ize, -ite, -phobia, -philia, -bot, -icious, -ate, -ality, -bound, -city, -aholic, -hood, -ish, -land, -less.

You can find longer lists online. Just go to your favorite search engine and look for lists of prefixes and suffixes.

Changing root words is often used to dismiss or disparage competitors. One journalist referred to most blogs out there as “McWriting” (referencing McDonald’s). And of course politicians are well known for making up words (amongst other things).

Another great use of root word changing is coming up with names of new products or book titles.

You can try adding both prefixes and suffixes to a word. Just be careful you don’t come up with something like CompuGlobalHyperMegaNet.

Comments are closed.

Previous post:

Next post: