When you're deep inside a category, domain or market, its familiar language becomes invisible to you. But the thinking and unspoken truths that language conceals may have real consequences for you.

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"It was actually commissioned to do something quite specific and it ended up changing a lot of the communication of the organisation in the broadest sense. It gave the organisation a really distinct voice and allowed us to create change"
Comms Director, UK Charity

The water we swim in

Common language surrounding any phenomenon both reflects and underlines the assumptions and value judgements of the day. But both language and thinking change over time – the cheerful ‘plump’ of 1950s Britain became the medicalised, demonised ‘obese’ of today. Public language is powerful because it makes certain truths hard to dispute, and sets up a shorthand for making value judgements about things and people.

Language matters

Unquestioned truths in your cultural and competitive environment shape how resources are allocated – funds, attention, sympathy and more – and determine how effective your brand and communications can be. This matters especially if you are trying to disrupt a market, or change the way something like a disease or an industry is perceived. Language is both the route to revealing those truths and a powerful tool for changing them.

Map your context

With a map of your context - the taken-for-granted truths and unspoken ideas that surround your business - you can plan how to deal with it. You might work within that discourse, carefully begin to change it, or radically disrupt it. Analysis creates a road map to help you navigate or even change the truths that matter to you.