Talk is Cheap, But Words Can Cost You
Discover 3 secrets of the experts!
You have already heard that when online, Content Is King! Relevant, compelling content is vital to your online success. One huge online rule is to use content that your intended audience find valuable thus attract them to your site, you and your business or nonprofit. If it’s interesting to you, it will attract others with similar interests. Using the power of words, it must continue cementing your brand and message in the mind and heart of each visitor. While at first glance, this may appear simple – yet it can often be tougher than it looks. With these 3 secrets from the best content creators, you too can be a content King or Queen!
First, some believe that to become successful in writing or speaking, you must have a large vocabulary. Nothing could be further from the truth. As expert wordsmiths know the most read material should be written at between a 5th and 8th grade level. So what’s up? Are we, as reading or listening consumers stupid? No! The answer is simple, and your reader is not simple-minded. When something is written so the average 10 – 12 year old can read it – it’s primal. Your reader spends brain cells thinking about your ideas, not your sentences. There is a gut level impact. Your words and ideas go straight to the reader’s brain and sticks. The 5th – 8th grade level secret is all about not making your reader think, except when you want them to think. It’s about you speaking straight to their gut and heart. Here is how you do it:
- Make paragraphs short and punchy
- Get right to the point with short simple sentences
- Always use a 2 syllable word over a 4 syllable one when you can
Second, the art of positive speaking and writing. Most of us fall into the habit of using the same words to say the same things day after day for years. Without knowing it, this habit causes us to miss opportunities that could change our lives. The habit of using positive, persuasive words has helped others attract the right people and circumstances. Of course, that in turn enables them to do things that those who don’t use those words can’t. Below are two lists, the first are the words you need to use as often as possible every day. The second list of words – avoid like the plague.
- 20 Most Persuasive Words: (these words will make you seem more credible)
You, easy, amazing, introducing, love, money, new, proven, results, safe, save, remarkable, now, quick, free, discover, guarantee, improve, sale, increase
- 20 Most Non-Persuasive Terms and Words: (knowing which words to avoid will save you time, energy, and missed opportunities)
If, impossible, can’t I think, I hope, try, won’t, fail, unable, it’s not my job, maybe, I doubt it, not sure, I, me, problem, never, It’s not our policy, no, my
Notice that the words “I, me, my” are not on the list of Most Persuasive words? This brings you to the third secret of wordsmiths.
Third, it’s much easier to listen to someone who’s talking about YOU than constantly talking about themselves. It’s more fun and it’s less work. Many times you can twist a sentence around and speak or write from the reader’s point of view. See? Just did it again! This secret is called the You /Me ratio. When writing or in speaking, you should always talk about your reader (“You”, “Your”) at least 1.5 times more than you talk about yourself (”I”, “me”, “My”, “we”); the more you use “you” words the better.
Ok, now you know the top 3 secrets of wordsmiths. Now what? This is where the fun comes in. To break any old habits of speaking and writing, you need to take the art of wordsmithing seriously. Practice with your spouse, family, children, friends, and co-workers. Practice these tips everywhere, every day. It will be much easier than you think it will be – and you will soon enjoy the all the benefits of being a persuasive wordsmith! (FYI: what you have just read is a 6th grade level, the average 11 year old would get the message. The You to Me ratio: 1.6 : 1)
Do you need content that fits your existing branding? Or do you have content that needs a “make-over” to bring it up to date? Are you curious is your content is helping or hindering you on the search engines? We can help! Find out today! Let the integrated approach and expert content skills of our team help your site’s content today!
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