We are emotional creatures. We’re attracted to things and people that make us feel good or make the pain go away.
We call logical what our emotions tell us is right.
Be intentional. Before you write the first word, decide what emotions you want your reader to feel.
Here’s a flow you can use:
If you were telling a story, it looks like this:
As a writer, you’re a tour guide. Make it a trip worth taking, won’t you?
The best writers are change agents.
You know you’ve seen a good movie when you’re inspired to reach for the stars afterward.
You’ve read a great blog post when you have a plan of action in hand at the end.
If you’re not motivating your reader to do something, why are you writing?
Copywriters make money when people do things:
Effective writing moves people to act.
When you plan a trip, you choose a destination before you crank your car.
If you don’t, how will you know when you’ve arrived?
When you choose the emotion you want your reader to feel and the action you want her to take, you choose your destination.
Then it’s easy to plan your post. You fill in the blanks that answer these questions:
What do I want?
What will it take?
What challenges will I face?
When you know where you’re going, it’s a lot easier to find the answers.
Why do you watch your favorite TV show?-because it satisfies a need, a want, or a desire. Your program is not boring because it invites you into an emotional experience. Any actor worth his/her salt is a master at conveying the precise emotions that add power to a scene. If she fails, the performance isn’t credible. It’s the same with copywriting.
As Elmer Wheeler said years ago, “You sell the sizzle, not the steak.”
People buy drills because they want holes. They go on vacation because they want an escape from the everyday. They ride roller coasters for the adrenaline rush. Ask yourself, “How will people feel when they read my story? What feelings will motivate them to act on my suggestions?
Write to evoke that feeling!
Sound manipulative? The truth is we’re all manipulators. Every time you interact with someone, you’re manipulating him or her. You want them to like you, so you ingratiate yourself. You change people’s experiences by showing up or staying away. Even your facial expressions can set the tone for someone’s day. If you’ll go ahead and admit that you manipulate, you’ll be more effective as a writer.
There’s nothing like a war to bring people together.
When you and someone else have a common enemy, it’s wise to join forces and fight him.
We all want to survive. Chances are you’re writing about dreams that get threatened, derailed, and killed. Your weapons are encouragement, strategies, and hope that a better future awaits.
What do Mother Teresa, Barack Obama, and Infamous Cult Leader Jim Jones have in common?
I know. You’re scratching your head and saying, “Frank, you’ve lost your mind. There’s nothing they have in common.”
Or you might say 2 out of 3 do.
You can’t deny that all three were very persuasive.
They gave hope to their followers.
Mother Teresa gave poor people hope that someone cared about their plight.
Barack Obama gave millions of frustrated Americans hope that change would do good things for the nation.
Unsavory (even criminal though he was) Jim Jones gave his followers something they wanted– hope.
What hope are you giving your readers that will move them to do and believe great things?
We’ve established that people buy things emotionally.
They use logic to justify to themselves that they made the right choice.
You buy the Mustang instead of the Honda because you deserve to ride in style.
You vacation in the Florida Keys because that’s what the cool people do — and you’re cool.
You buy a bigger house than you need because you want to look successful to your friends.
And if you make a terrible decision, you logically conclude, “What else could I have done?”
You’re competing with countless other voices broadcasting similar messages. Take a cue from the copywriter and write words that sell. The best logic is that which confirms what people already want to do.
You’ve just been given a crash course in human behavior.
The principles are as old as time. They’ll never expire, go off, or fade out of style. If you want to make your mark in the blogosphere, you can’t afford to ignore what you just read.
Next time you write, use these principles to edit your work. Worry more about impact than perfect grammar. So long as your readers understand and relate to you, you’ll be a great writer.
Use these keys regularly and:
Inspired by Frank McKinley
Frank says, "Put this to work, and you’ll be a major influencer in record time!"
xx Judy McNutt, The Writers Gift Mentor