COM0014- Blog 2: Is your story getting lost?

Have you ever wondered why yoshare your story pixabayur story isn’t getting much attention? Why it is not gaining popularity, then perhaps you are doing something not right!

In this competitive world of digital age, it is easy for your story to get lost in clutter. Storytelling is an art and if done corrective, it can be very effective in gaining interest and popularity.

Canva - Apple Magic Mouse on Brown TableThis week’s lesson was a bit of an eye opener. The main point from this week’s reading was philosophy of inverted triangle i.e. putting important information first so that you can grab reader’s attention as quickly as possible vs. potentially losing them.  It is best to layout your story before writing in the most clear and concise way by ensuring that the story has clear beginning, middle and end. It is always a great idea to consider what kind of experience you want your audience to have.

While writing your content, the part that we all are aware and seldom forget or overlookCanva - Red Pen on English Grammar Text is grammar, spelling and punctuation. When we get into mode of writing, we forget these elements which from a reader’s perspective looks unprofessional. It is always a good idea to get your story proofread by someone else as I believe fresh pair of eyes are always better to catch errors.

Use of active vs. passive voice is also an integral part of telling your story. Using a passive voice is one of the most common mistakes in writing. The story only gets lots of attention and interest when you can ask questions to your readers and when they can relate to the story.

To summarize, take away from this week’s reading is to begin writing with the end in the mind with deciding what kind of experience you want your audience to have and how to engage with them.

(Source of photos: http://www.canva.com)

COM0014 – Blog 2 – Storytelling & Communication Styles

When I hear the word “storytelling,” I immediately think of Grampa Simpson spouting off nonsensical ramblings about wearing an onion on his belt during the war.  While this is a form of storytelling, it doesn’t translate well to a blog post.  In social media, storytelling is all about communicating a message in a concise, meaningful, easy to understand, and familiar way.  When using storytelling on social media, there are few important things to keep in mind…

  • Your writing needs to be clear and concise – You’re not Margaret Atwood. It is important to get to the point in your first few sentences, and be clear about what you want to get across. Make sure your writing is interesting, and always lead with your most important information.  Readers will skim titles, and the first few sentences, but will only read on if it is appealing to them
  • Make sure you check over your writing before posting it; read it out loud if you need to. Spelling and grammatical errors will turn off readers, and lessen your credibility in the subject area.  Remember there is always a keyboard warrior out there ready to pounce on your mistakes.
  • Keep your audience engaged by writing in an active voice, as opposed to a passive voice. Write as it comes naturally to you, and keep your tone positive; readers will respond accordingly.

After you have hooked your audience in with a catchy title, killer opening, and well written copy, you can’t just leave them hanging. Always include a call to action; this is the reason why you have written your piece, and what you want them to do next.

Concise writing has always been difficult for me.  It has become more natural for me the more I do it, but I often feel like I am not putting enough in.  Do the rest of you share this struggle?  How do you keep your word count down, and still get your point across?  Share your comments below.

COM0014-800 – Post #2 – Storytelling: Not Just for Grandpa Anymore

Storytelling is as old as language itself, and serves the purpose of passing information from one person to another; social media is a platform for us to share our messages in direct, concise, and meaningful way that is inspirational and and easily understood by out audiences. There are a few guidelines to keep in mind when storytelling on social media…

  1. Keep it clear and concise – Get to the point quickly in your first few sentences, and be clear what point you want to get across. Always open with your most important information, but at the same time, keep it interesting; it’s not just about stating the facts. Social media readers will skim the headlines and first few sentences of a post, and only continue reading if the style and content appeal to them.

  1. Spelling, grammar, and punctuation errors are a turn off – Make sure you edit your work or have someone do it for you. Nothing with kill your credibility faster than errors in your writing; the internet is full of people just waiting to point out your smallest mistake. Reading your work out loud can help you find errors, or have someone else edit your writing if you work in a monastery or library.

  1. Use a style that will keep your audience engaged – Writing in an active voice rather than a passive voice is more engaging by nature. At the same time, make it your own, write how it comes naturally; you can always edit later It’s also important to stay positive with your writing; keep your tone positive, and people will keep coming back.

Once you have managed to engage your audience with a captivating opening, followed by more details on your topic, in a clearly written, well edited, and concise fashion, where do you go next? It’s best to end with a call to action, and how to do so. Of course you should already have that in mind when you start writing.

For me, concise writing is difficult; I come from an academic background where long, drawn out writing is practically encouraged. I’ve gone through about 5 different drafts to get my word count down, but still get across what I want. How about you? Does short concise writing come naturally to you? Any tips on how to master it? Post your comments below.