Language Counts


Today CNN made an interesting move with their language.

They are rebranding the War on Terror.

It is now the "so-called" War on Terror.

Now you can have a lot of different opinions about the War on Terror. You can think it’s a huge waste. You can think it’s immoral. You can think it’s futile. But it’s the first time I am aware of that an administration has declared a military war, spent billions fighting it, taken dramatic casualties and then had its war status disputed by a major press outlet.

Vietnam was just the opposite. For 3 administrations it was called a Police Action in an effort to rebrand what the public thought was a war into something less. But the press wouldn’t accept that and branded it a war. Now CNN is taking the opposite tack.

Here’s the thing: Reframing is a powerful tactic. It takes time and patience, but it fundamentally shifts the story into your terms.

How could you reframe your business? How could you reframe your competitors?

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