So you want to become a successful digital writer? No problem. All you have to do is make your writing captivating and engaging by keeping these five things top of mind: write your content like you’re telling a story; create content that is clear and concise; be mindful of grammar, spelling and punctuation; use an active voice; and write with a style that encourages engagement and interaction.
Digital writers face many challenges in their efforts to stand out in today’s world. For one, people are strapped for time and are easily distracted. Not only that, the digital age has made the competition fiercer than ever. Therefore your writing needs to capture their attention immediately – with a good story. Once you’ve done that, you need to make sure you don’t lose your reader through unnecessary content – be short and sweet. And even a good story won’t keep their attention if they become distracted and fed up by poor grammar and spelling (not to mention your loss of credibility). Using an active voice will help keep momentum in the story. And finally, you need to ensure you have a plan before you start writing. You want your material to provide your audience with an experience they will remember, something that will inspire them to take action.
Being a successful storyteller isn’t all about what you like. It’s also about identifying what your audience wants to hear – and they want to find it and hear about it in as short a time frame as possible. Oh, and once you become an expert at keeping their attention, make sure you provide an easy way for them to share your content and interact with you.
Are there any blogs that you actively engage in? I’d be curious to see what style is used to keep you engaged.
Storytelling is hard. Nine times out of ten I think I know what I want to say, but do I tell my story clearly and in a way that my audience finds engaging? Do I get lost in the details and take too long to get to the point? The tip that struck a chord with me was “The Inverted Pyramid” approach. I put too much faith in my readers. I expect that they will make it through to the end of the post and my brilliant thoughts and the purpose of the post will be clear.This post is a journey of self-discovery and growth.
This week’s lesson really made me reflect on my communication style. Many questions started floating around in my mind.
- Do I use an active voice?
- Is what I write engaging enough to direct readers at various levels to jump to the next phase?
- Do I do good grammar…are you adequately distracted now?
What I do know
- I have a conversational communication style (please note that I consciously removed the word very from this sentence and had to refrain from putting in an exclamation mark too). I throw my personality into my posts with quips and asides because it is unnatural for me otherwise.
- The tip to break up content with subject headings and sections pleasantly surprised me because this is something I do.
- Lastly, I often over-complicate sentences. I don’t do this because I want to sound smart. I do this because my thoughts are complicated and tend to get communicated in a complicated manner at times.
I’ll be honest, I found the tips in the article “Business Writing for the Web: 27 Ways to Write Better” to be a little overwhelming. There are many valid points and solid suggestions, but too many. There is no way I can keep 27 tips in my head and possibly write a blog post at the same time – I’m too simple.
The New Me
Moving forward, I will be using this method to grab the attention of my readers and then implement the additional tips to hold their attention – has it worked…are you still reading? Be honest – have I engaged and pushed you along the reading phases?