Some of these may seem obvious, but check your previous work against them and see if you're using them as described.Why are you writing? Do you want people to buy something? Or believe in something? Or subscribe to your newsletter? Choose one objective.
This simple addition to your writing will increase your effectiveness more than anything else you can do. Not knowing the answer to this first question can not be overcome by any other technique. All of the tips listed below and above won't matter if you don't know why you are writing.
Whatever you want, use the following 12 steps to writing credible and convincing content:
- Use the word because in your pitches. You should always give people a reason why they should take action, and using the word because is the most powerful way to do it.
- Anticipate objections. Whether you are selling a product, a service or an idea, you have to address the objections of your readers.
- Create incentives to read on. Joe Sugarman calls these seeds of curiosity — short phrases like Not only that … and But here comes the best part... will keep readers moving through your content.
- Use statistics. These add credibility to your story.
- Sell with true benefits. True benefits connect with readers’ desires. Beware of fake benefit's — they’re the antidote to persuasion.
- Be passionate. It’ll shine through. If you’re not passionate about your ideas or products or services, why should your readers bother to take action?
- Show your readers by engaging them. Get them to post questions that you’ll answer. Each answer should lead them to post the next question.
- Beware the curse of knowledge. Don’t assume readers know everything you do about your topic. Try to get back into that beginner’s mind.
- Write about what you know. Being persuasive is much easier when you know your stuff.
- Engage the left and the right brain. Follow facts with stories or quotes. Use a blend of logical and emotional approaches.
- Don’t sell before the prospect is ready. Educate your readers, inform them about your cause, and help solve their issues. Become a trusted source of information and your readers will buy from you.
- Have an impeccably clear call to action. Tell your readers exactly what you expect them to do next, and remind them why it’s in their best interest to buy, click or subscribe.