Woman with acronyms floating around her head

Do you speak your buyers' language?

ai saleseq Jun 28, 2024

Most industries have their own acronyms and terminology. And the bigger the company, the more likely they have their own distinct set, too.

It can be overwhelming at first but it's essential to learn so you can relate. It's part of your SalesEQ.

Here's how to learn these terms quickly:
1. Ask ChatGPT.

Example: "Please tell me all the acronyms enterprise risk management companies use in North America in banking."

Drill deeper. Ask more and more specific questions.

Test these findings with more reliable resources (see the rest of this list).

2. Study buyer language on LinkedIn profiles, posts, and company pages.

3. Ask your colleagues.

4. Read trade publications.

5. Go to webinars and other events.

6. Ask your buyers. Don't be afraid to ask a dumb question. If you hear something on a disco call you're not sure of, simple say, "I'm sorry, our clients often have similar yet different meanings for that acronym. Would you mind explaining it?"

Or use a simple mirror. "I'm sorry, RCSA?"

Many reps are afraid to ask a buyer what they mean by something for fear of looking foolish but rest assured it's better to learn what they mean now than to waste their and your time by moving forward on something you completely misunderstood! That helps no one and is even more embarrassing later. 

I've been around a long time and I sell to a clear buyer and ICP and yet I find each company may have an entirely different meaning for a standard industry term. What one company calls an SDR (sales development rep) another company calls an ADM (account development manager). If I misinterpret the term ADM for what I think is CS (Client Success) I may completely misread the situation and look pretty dumb later.

7. Keep a file with acronyms you can access easily and dump them in as you use them.

8. If they're company-specific, put them into the CRM record for the account and opportunity.


Be careful not to wield new terminology you don't fully understand. Test the knowledge you gain from researching with safe resources like colleagues and managers. Over time you'll become more expert but keep your ears open. Terms change quickly and may age poorly. What was once Sales and Marketing is now often called GTM (Go-to-market). :)



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