You know that small house in the country?
The rustic, oftentimes romanticized one, usually nestled by a lake?
The place where people like to relax, read, sleep, and drink beer on weekends? (And maybe swim or ski?)
Well, I call it a cottage.
And I'm not the only one
My English-speaking friends and family members in and around eastern, southern and central Ontario also call it a cottage.
And apparently, so do folks in Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia.
But not everyone does.
Same country, same language, different vocabulary
While researching about cottages for an client’s e-newsletter article, I learned that English-speaking folks across Canada call it:
a cabin in Newfoundland, British Columbia, Alberta and Saskatchewan;
camp in Northwestern Ontario;
and the lake in Manitoba (as to whether the building must reside by a lake to be called "the lake," I have no idea).
Lesson learned: always consider regional differences!
Even if your audience speaks the same language, they may not use the same vocabulary.
Small nuances that demonstrate you understand your audience – such as communicating in a way that acknowledges regional differences – can go a long way in appealing to their heads and hearts (and, hopefully, their wallets).
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"Ottawa writer for hire" Lindsey McCaffrey is an award-winning freelance writer, editor and content strategist for businesses and non-profit organizations. Learn more about Lindsey here.