A simple guide to Toonisms

I noticed a huge shift in my business when I started embracing myself.
(Not literally, although I do love a good self-hug.)

But figuratively.



I mean, everyone thinks they have a great fashion sense and a brilliant sense of humour, but do they?

I got tired of worrying whether other people found me funny or interesting, and instead decided that finding myself funny and interesting was enough.

I stopped trying to fit in and started to be far out.

I let my odd little sense of humour invade my business posts, and I began to create Toonisms.
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What are Toonisms?

Toonisms are little phrases that I use in my everyday life.

Borrowed from popular culture, things my parents and brother said when I was growing up, books, and just my own random mad brain.

Why do they help?

I work in a super competitive market, and my Toonisms help me differentiate my brand and let my audience immediately recognise content as mine.

More importantly, they let me have fun with my business and mean I get to avoid using the same old tired business clichés.
I wrote a lot about these in my book The Confessions of a Misfit Entrepreneur – you can check out my glossary here.

Now I see my Toonisms being adopted by others, which is kind of cool.

But it makes also kinda makes me want to say ‘hey that’s my phrase!’
I don’t though, cos that would make me a shit gibbon.

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SEO perspective

As it gets increasingly hard to rank for what you do, we’re all moving towards trying to build our personal brand.

Thankfully the name Kate Toon is pretty rare.

I mean there’s dentist in Ipswich called Kate Toon, but other than her – I pretty much dominate the SERPS (Search Engine Results Pages).

But having your name or your business name recognisable is just the first step.

Having recognisable sub-brands and products help with SEO.

I went pretty generic with The 10-Day SEO challenge. I wasn’t the first to use it and several have used it since.

(The 5-day SEO challenge? My goodness, how original!)

But with SEO Nibbles I created something new.
I could have gone with bootcamp or SEO essentials but they’re so generic.

Instead, SEO Nibbles is a stand-out, and we’ll all pretend I don’t accidentally say SEO Nipples about 10 times during the course.

Creating your own brand language can be a powerful way to create a connection with your audience.

It’s not a catchphrase or a tag line, but a culture.

People who get you,  get the joke and feel included.

They speak your language.



It also helps to get rid of customers who aren’t your cup of chai.

If you don’t like your quirky style now, it’s unlikely you ever will.
And I’d rather they find out now than after listening to 100 hours of me on my courses and videos.

Toonism examples

Here are some examples of the phrases I like to use:

#BeMoreShark My personal mantra on life – be brave, be fearless
#TOONCAVE My office
Anyhoo Instead of Anyhow
Arse hat An idiot
Beast A generic term for humans when referring to a mass of them.
So instead of ‘hey guys’ – we use ‘hey beasts’
Bum-clenchingly So awesome or scary it makes you squeeze your bum cheeks.
C.F.O. Chief Furry Officer
Can’t be arsed Can’t be bothered
Crisps Australians call them chips – they are wrong
Egg day Happy Egg day = Happy Easter
Faff To waste time (see fart arsing)
Fart arsing As in fart arsing about – to faff (see faff)
Flump To be in a bit of a bad mood or feel unmotivated
Frazzled To be tired
Frazzles My favourite food stuff (crisps, fake bacon flavoured)
Give good pod Be a good podcast guest
Google juice The love that Google gives you via backlinks
Grapple the Google beast Decide to get serious about Search Engine Optimisation.
Hola Instead of hello
Holy Badger tits An expression of awe – as in holy cow!
Humaning Spending time with humans
It’s the tits / you are the tits Something that is so awesome it’s nearly as good as a fine pair of boobs
Lick that frog We’re told to eat the frog (get on with the tough task) but sometimes it’s okay to give it a gentle lick
Like too little butter spread over too much bread. The feeling of being worn out of burned out (Stolen from Tolkien)
Mini Human Your child, a child, someone’s child (see small human)
Muppet An idiot
Otter Just one of my favourite creatures, my spirit animal.
Happier than an otter in a sock
Like a damp otter sliding down a tube
Piglet Jumper My generic ‘keyword’ example
Pleasing the Google gods/Copy gods Making the powers that be in the mighty heavens weep with your awesomeness
Shaving back hair The art of preparing oneself to look like a human before appearing in public
Shit Gibbon An annoying or stupid human who behaves poorly and deserves a firm slap
Small human Your child, a child, someone’s child (see mini human)
Sticky tube Other people call it a sales funnel. To me it’s a sticky tube
Thick as a bag of hair To be stupid and useless
Thigh-Shudderingly So awesome it makes your thighs quiver
Tooniverse The little world of awesome humans I have found and adopted into my business world
Warm bosom A happy and safe place (join the warm bosom of our copywriting community)
Woo woo A bit airy fairy and dream catcher and hessian and ethereal
Yule Happy Yule = Happy Christmas


For a list of words I never use head here.


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Over to you

Have I missed any Toonisms that you know and like?
Let me know in the comments.

Have you developed your own brand language?  If so, let me know below.

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