Sean Quinn
Vocabulary Lessons with Ches’s

Reading time: 2 minutes

Any brand operating in multiple locations knows the challenges of keeping things consistent. Want proof? Look no further than Starbucks – where you can get the exact same cup of coffee in any country in the world – for proof that consistency is key to success.

On a local level, our dear friends over at Ches’s Fish and Chips faced the consistency challenge over the last year. We stepped in to help them re-design their entire menu set-up, including digital and print menus, overhead panel and drive-thru menus, as well as a breakfast and kids menu.  I know, what you’re thinking … yes that is a lot of menus, but we’ve never been scared of a challenge. Here’s how we did it!

Homemade, home-made or home made?

The English language is apparently the hardest language in the world to learn. I can totally see that, since you can write home made three ways depending on the context. Most brands also have words they use with unique spelling or capitalization, over and over again to tie that word to the brand; think Twitter, iPad, or Aeroplan Points.

Twitter is traditionally a verb, but is now a brand name, iPad is two words (technically) and I – meaning personal – should always be capitalized, but the product name is now a proper noun, trademarked, and uses this capitalization in casual and formal communication, and Aeroplan isn’t even a word!

Crispy, juicy and oh, so delicious

For Ches’s we always capitalize Cod Bites. It’s a product unique to them, and they want to “own” that word, same as Hand-Cut Chips; always hyphenated and always capitalized.

Whether you’re serving up some fee and chee or giving health advice like ProActive, it’s essential that the whole team is aware of and consistently uses the same customized words and phrases.

Bite-sized, mouthwatering, and moreish.

To keep everyone on the same page we created a lexicon for Ches’s. In this wonderful document is every key word and phrase, unique spellings, and even a description of the tone of voice used in all the marketing. The set-up is simple and is only a couple steps:  

Step one: Pull all the copy from each marketing tool and create a master source document.

Step two: Look for and document inconsistencies in each tool.

Step three: Refine list in a collaborative environment with the team.

Step four: Determine which inconsistencies are relative and specific to your brand.

Step five: Create a lexicon of approved signed off key words, phrases, and product names.

Sizzling, seasoned, got ’er scald.

A lexicon is the vocabulary of your brand, it carries across multiple platforms, acts as a guide and corporate memory to current and future team members, and ensures that everytime your customers see your words and phrases they recognize them as yours.

Whether you’re at a location in St. John’s or Corner Brook, your hear the same voice, speaking the same words, with the same tone.

Do you think your brand could benefit from a lexicon? Get in touch and we’ll help you create the consistency you crave!





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