With love in the air it feels like a good time to get a bit Match.com, and to explain what writing love letters got to do with great business copy.
I’m not talking about flowery language, and perfumed envelopes, I’m thinking of writing that makes a genuine connection because it’s been shaped with a real person in mind.
My blog pieces are written like this, for a special somebody. While I’ll pick a subject that I hope has a wide appeal – branding, writing tips, web design – I’ll construct my thoughts around someone I know is facing the issue in their business life.
Focusing on one person, and helping them shed light on a problem, will make your writing come alive. It’s the details that give your writing a sense of depth and interest. Generally speaking, generalising makes for weaker copy.
Valuable content is created by writing to meet a need – using your knowledge to help potential clients. Use your clients, and potential ones, as sources of inspiration. Ask them about the frustrations they face, and use this as a basis for blog pieces and articles that are genuinely useful.
My recent newsletters post is an example of this. My friend John BD was having difficulties persuading others in his department that a newsletter was a good idea, so I wrote something for him that set out the benefits clearly, and gave some tips on creating one that would help his business.
Having John BD in mind not only focused my attention on a particular issue, drawing together what I knew on the subject and writing something from his perspective, but it helped with the tone of the piece. You’ll write on a level with your reader if you’re writing one to one. Talking either up or down to a reader is a turn off, so it’s a good way to keep yourself in check.
Writing to your one and only makes business sense.
So, here are nine reasons why you should write with that special person in mind.
1. It makes your writing warmer.
2. It makes you think of the best and clearest way of saying something. Friends don’t talk in jargon.
3. It makes you want to engage, make them smile, share something – all good ways to make strong connections.
4. It makes you focus. Cutting out anything unnecessary gives your writing more impact.
5. It gives your writing immediacy. You’ll choose words that connect, rather than distance your reader.
6. It will make your writing pacier. We use active verbs rather than passive ones when we’re talking to friends.
7. It will give your writing more impact. Authenticity is valuable, and writing from the heart is how you’ll achieve it.
8. It will make your content more valuable. Something written for a specific client will be genuinely useful.
9. It will demonstrate the way you apply your knowledge to help businesses succeed. Although you’re writing to one person, your reader will see that you absolutely know your stuff.
Happy Valentine’s Day,