Shakespeare, watch out – we’re catching up with you!

Now we’re sure a lot of you probably saw this awesome examination of hip-hop vocabulary by Matt Daniels recently. We absolutely loved it, and it made us curious as to how we’d measure up against this talented bunch, and what us marketing folk can take away from it all.

Using the same sample size as this study (35,000 words), we took the most recent blog posts to see where we’d fall in terms of unique words used. The results? We were pretty happy to find we’d used 5,162 unique words. That places us just 8 unique words less than Shakespeare… And a few more than the likes of Nas and the Beastie Boys – pretty good company to be in!

Matthew Daniels / The Largest Vocabulary in Hip Hop / Via

So why does this matter?

All joking aside, this was a good little exercise for us as we pride ourselves in being as creative in our words and subject matter, as in the designs and products we create. (A thesaurus is, after all, a copywriter’s best friend).

Seeing how our vocab stands up against some incredible writers that we have a lot of love for lets us know that we’re driving in the right direction. It also gives us a goal to aim for… Wu Tang and Moby Dick best be looking over their shoulders!

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“Cash Rules Everything Around Me / C.R.E.A.M., get the money / Dollar, dollar bill y’all.”
– Wu Tang Clan, C.R.E.A.M.

What can we learn?

Quite simply, a golden grasp on language can help boost your content.

Nowadays we all know that search engine algorithms are becoming more sophisticated and reading content in a more human way (we’re looking at you Google). So gone are the days of just stuffing content full of keywords to move up the search rankings.

Search engines are now focusing more on top quality content that delivers value to readers. Which really is a win-win situation all-round; readers get something decent to read, and those of us writing content are pushed to come up with something interesting to say if we want people to see it.

So getting back to how a varied vocabulary ties into all this… We have a bit of a love affair with words, so the thought of just wheelbarrowing out the same old clichés time after time seems like a bit of an insult to language. It’s also no fun to re-hash topics that have already been discussed a thousand and one times.

This is why in both the language we use, and the subject matter we talk about we try to push ourselves to look at what we talk about from a new angle and give our own spin… As well as stamping our personality on it with the words we use. This is clearly also a key ingredient in the lyrics of the top hip-hop artists in Matt Daniels’ study too…

“All I need is one mic / All I need is one life, one try, one breath, I’m one man / What I stand for speaks for itself, they don’t understand.”
– Nas, One Mic


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