Fiverr Community Forum

Terms to NOT use on the forum or with clients

While Fiverr is a melting pot of different cultures, skills and personalities (which in itself is one of the great strengths of the platform), there are a number of mistakes I keep seeing over and over in communications here on the forum. These mistakes impact poorly on the way in which your interactions are perceived, and could also have a huge negative impact if you use similar terminology in your gigs or client interactions.

Dear

Never refer to another person as “Dear” in a professional environment. In English, it is only used with (very) close friends and family. If you are male and you use it with other males, it comes across as weird. If you are male or female and use it with females, it comes across as condescending and sexist. Do not do it.

Bro/Dude

It should never be used in a professional environment, and if you use them with females, then you clearly don’t understand the terms. I’ve been called “bro” by other forum users a few times and I find it really offensive. It’s short for “brother.” See “Brother/Sister” below, while “dude” is slang term for a man.

Brother/Sister

Unless the person you are referring to really is your brother or sister, then never use this term in a professional setting. It’s a term of familiarity that you should not use, especially with strangers.

Friend/Mate

If you are dealing with a customer, they are your customer (or prospective customer). They aren’t your friend, they are someone with whom you are engaging in a contract for professional services. They may over time become friends, but unless you both acknowledge a genuine friendship exists, don’t call them “friend.” “Mate” can mean friend but it can also mean your spouse. It should never be used in a professional context.

Knock

This one makes no sense. “Knock” is not a term that is used in a professional setting ever. It does not mean “Got a job” or “Contact” or “attempt to grab attention.” It comes across as weird and that you cannot communicate properly with appropriate terminology. It doesn’t matter if you saw someone else use it and you think it’s cool, they used in incorrectly and if you use it, you are using it incorrectly too.

Shear

I see a lot of people confuse “shear” with the word “share.” To “shear” is what you do to remove the wool from a sheep, to “share” is to give others something of yours. You don’t “shear” your gig, you “share” it. If you ask your client to “shear” their work with you, then they are going to wonder what you are talking about.

Summary

Always be mindful of the conventions used in communication in a professional setting. Using any or all of the terms above in the community, in your gigs, or in your communications with your client will almost certainly have a negative impact on how you are perceived, and consequently your ability to get work.

If English is not your first language, then use the forum as an opportunity to practice communicating professionally without consequence. Write every post as though you were speaking to a customer. The more you do this, the more it becomes habit, and the less likely you are to make a mistake when it counts.

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Also, the name of the site is Fiverr. F-I-V-E-R-R. Not fiber, fervor, favor, fever, furby, or phoney. Fiverr.

Turn off your auto-correct. If you want to learn English, those squiggly red lines are each an opportunity to learn.

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Every time I see this, I immediately think that if a person can’t be bothered to get the name of the platform right, then how careful are they going to be doing the job I hired them to do?

It’s the details that matter.

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Several years ago, I posted a “don’t call people dear” here.
In fact I think a good number of other sellers done so as well.
It didn’t help much though… :sweat_smile:

I don’t mind my buyers calling me friend/bro ( even though I ain’t a dude) once we’ve built enough trust,
but dear…that one really rubs me the wrong way each time I see it! Oh dear.

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If someone is a friend, then yes, of course they may call me so. Generally if I see “bro”, I think it’s because someone hasn’t actually paid any attention whatsoever to whom they’re responding and just use it out of habit.

That reminds me, I need to add “friend/friends” or “family” to my list. Fiverr is a community, but it isn’t a family!

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Very true , I get a lot of ’ dude ’ lately :smiley:

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That reminded me to add “dude” to my list :slight_smile:

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Can I get a bro to odour me a massage on fibre with a dear sister with knocking?

Really, I don’t see what is even wrong with this. :innocent:

Jokes aside, I loathe being called Bro as it is just not cool. It tries to be cool and therefore over-familiar (as do most of these things). This over-familiar approach makes it creepy. Besides anyone who has ever called me bro before we have any relationship, has been a total tosser (of course they don’t see it that way).

:slight_smile:

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I should have called this thread “Best Tips for getting customers” or something equally as inane. The vast number of forum users who I am trying to help here will ignore this thread because it doesn’t match what they steadfastly refuse to believe (or they simply can’t understand it). They see others have these behaviours, and they think that means that it’s okay. It really isn’t.

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It is the way.

Ignorance is not a lack of having access to knowledge. Ignorance is the act of choosing to ignore knowledge.

We don’t call a 3 yo child ignorant because they don’t know the intricacies of rocket science. But we can call teenagers who have been taught better ignorant when they choose to be lazy and spout nonsense as fact like moon rockets being powered by magic fairy dust.

Sadly you are right and most people will ignore this because it does not suit their expectation and requires some effort to change (the most frightening thing in the universe - note how Weeping Angels can’t get you when you are looking at them :wink: ).

:slight_smile:

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Even if you have, you’ll get a lot of those “thank you for your valuable information” replies and they won’t do anything after that. :sweat:

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Fank U dear bro for your valuable informasion :grin:

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@teramangala There’s always one! :crazy_face: :rofl:

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Especially if those others are from their own country. Which is understandable, but can still lead to losing a client, or worse.

Another term not to use would be man. I doubt that any client would find thanks, man appropriate. Especially if the said client is a woman.

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This post was perfect timing!

Yesterday, I was trying to find a seller to do an architectural floor plan for me, and this is how every single message went:

“Ma’am thank you”
“I will do good job ma’am”
“Okay ma’am”
“Ma’am I understand now”

You get the gist. It was starting to drive me crazy! He offered some extras, and I said no because they were way out of my budget and guess what he responded:

“Ma’am increase your budget”

Like what?! You make a budget after careful decisions. It’s not something you can just increase!

This went off topic a little, but yeah, @janeeditor, great post! This needs to be seen!

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Oh dear…
I honestly thought I was just not in on the ‘knock’ joke - I understand the linguistics behind it (I assume in certain languages it means 'to find/message/whatever) but it’s so weird to read 'no buyer came to knock me…
That being said, I’ve travelled all over the world and have been called everything from sis to miss, to sir (…well, mostly on Fiverr though. Ha.) and my main issue with greetings like that is how they lack that ‘personal’ touch they are trying hard to convey. It IS a cultural thing - 99% of the time when I was in China I was called sister or by my job’s title/ (or foreign woman, lol) but in a written context it just seems awkward and odd. If I can’t get over it (someone who sees the ‘why’ behind it and is used to it to some extent) I feel like your average customer will feel even odder about it - simply because it’s just ‘off’.

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I don’t mind about “dear”, my regular female buyers call me like this but it doesn’t bother me xd
But the things I hate the most in fiverr and forum are the: Bro, dude, sister, brother.
Friend/mate don’t bother me that much.

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My Bank & Mobile service provder always starts their message/email with “Dear Valued Customer” . I hate my Bank & my mobile carrier.

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As per my concern, Being a Professional Entrepreneur! Every one has its own way to talk in professional way, Such as every greetings are different from one and another, but also they have mean to make business in a effective way, and As you have already motioned that Fiver is a multi languages and nationalities personality platform, So no matter we use Dear, Respected Client, or Miss, MR or MRs.

What important is how you deliver and build the sense.

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But this whole thread has been about what words NOT to use, and it seems like it does matter to quite a number of people.

Dear: far too intimate/familiar and can come across as creepy.

Respected Client: boilerplate business response, insincere, somewhat odd for freelancing setting.

Miss/Mr./Mrs.: Using gender-specific language is not necessary and can lead to incorrect/embarrassing assumptions. How can one accurately determine a person’s gender if it is not mentioned in their entire profile/gig and their profile photo is a symbol/logo? Especially, how can one determine if a female is married (for the correct use of Mrs.) instead of being unmarried!

And, apologies, but “palatiform” made me chuckle. :smile:

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