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The quick guide to writing compelling content

writing compelling content - a quick guide

Last updated: 12/05/2016

You’ve hooked your reader with a great headline and pushed them to read the first line. Great! Then they lose attention and leave. How can you stop this from happening?

Your headline and opening sentence are all about the ‘what’s in it for me?’ factor. Let’s face it people are busy with demands on their time, and, if we’re honest, people are selfish. Unless you’re giving them something they need then you might as well not bother.

So how can you fulfil the promise that you started with? How can you make your reader stick around so they get what they came for?

Captivating content, that’s how.

Here’s your quick guide to writing compelling content

writing compelling content - a quick guide

1. Make it concise and easy to read

Scannable text boosts readability as we process information in chunks. Split content into sections with bulleted points, numbers or subheadings. Also cut the waffle. Compelling content is not a place for flabby wording.

2. Make it about them

Focus on your reader and tell them what they’ll gain by reading your information. Reward them with useful or entertaining content and they’ll repay you by sticking around ‘til the end.

3. Target your audience

You can’t please all the people all the time. Know your target reader and focus on them, and them alone.

4. Use your power freely

Sprinkle your text with power words. The most influential – you, free, because, instantly and new.

5. Selling the sizzle as well as the sausage

Benefits my friend, are the key to crafting sparkling copy.

Think ‘it’s not just a bed, but the best night’s sleep you’ll get‘.

Or all those M&S food-porn ads. Just don’t go over the top or you’ll lose your credibility.

6. Back up what you say

Avoid weasel words, offer evidence and keep your reader’s trust.

7. Trust

Speaking of trust, you can build your credibility though statistics, expert opinion or testimonials.

8. An offer they can’t refuse

Your offer is your promise to deliver. This doesn’t matter whether you’re selling a product or idea. Make your offer a compelling one, communicate it explicitly and quickly. This is your call to action – the action you want your reader to take.

These tips are your guide to creating persuasive copy. Use them wisely, give your reader what they came for and they’re more likely to take the action you want.

For more detail on writing compelling content, see the full article, first published on LinkedIn Pulse.

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