Content attractiveness mainly revolves around answers to three questions:
- What is the content about? The answer to this question gives us an idea about the topic that is to be covered in the content.
- Who is the intended reader of the content? The answer to the second question tells us about the consumer of the content.
- Why is the content written? Lastly, the reason to write the content is the motivation behind writing; it is important to understand the reason as it tells the writer about the exact way in which the content is to be structured.
Discovering the answers to above questions is essentially known as audience analysis.
Audience analysis or knowing about the reader tops the list of 7 ideas mentioned below.
Other ideas are equally important and they may overlap to the subject of audience analysis in one context or the other. Let us begin to learn about each idea one by one.
Learning about the audience, the content subject and the motivation behind writing about the subject are three fundamentals of writing effective content.
These fundamentals are essential to build a strong content strategy. And a strong content strategy leads to creation of content which is inclusive of a unique voice and conviction.
The writer is required to write a piece about leisure trip to London for the prospective customer of a specific tour and travel company.
- In this case, the reason for writing the content is marketing the destination to potential tourists who look forward to London as a leisure travel destination.
- Secondly, the subject of content will be itinerary and attractions about the London tour.
- Lastly, the content will be written for prospective customers who are willing to go for a leisure tour to the United Kingdom.
Now, imagine that the writer writes about the political scenario in London or about the crime rate in London.
Content of such type will make no sense to a prospective customer, who will consequently, decide not to choose traveling with that particular Tours & Travel Company.
This is a small example of ‘how content without a specific direction can lead to complete chaos and undesirable results’.
Document convention is about using a specific structure which is specific to the type of document. But overall, the structure for any type of document goes like this: Introduction, Topic Sentence, Main Body, and Closing Sentence.
A document with a good introduction will induce the reader to read further. The topic sentence further adds to the importance of reading about that subject.
The main body of the document will contain a discussion about the topic and it will essentially contain arguments for or against a certain topic, depending on what position is taken by the writer.
A marketing document about a product will contain the benefits and features about that particular product; On the contrary, if the document is about a product liability case written by the lawyer to sue the product manufacturer for damage to health, then, it will contain the disadvantages of consuming the product and more so, information about ‘how it has harmed the current consumers of the product’.
A closing sentence contains the closing comments which again bring together the different points of view mentioned in the main body of the document.
Hence, it can be understood that a structure can make a big difference to any type of document.
Developing attractive content also depends on classifying the type of document that is to be written.
There are various types of documents which are written by the writer and some of the common types are: Resume, Marketing Collateral, Report, Newspaper articles, and Digital articles among other commonly written documents.
It is necessary to understand the difference between each type of document.
A resume is essentially a snapshot of a candidate’s profile which will mainly include details about the education and career.
A resume cannot be written like a cover letter which is typically a description about ‘why a candidate has applied for the job’.
Similarly, marketing collateral about a software product cannot be written like an essay about the software industry.
If the collateral is a case study then it will contain the company’s product implementation success stories at a client location.
Therefore, it can be observed that the type of document to be written will always carry lot of weight age in deciding ‘how to begin writing ‘, ‘what should the document include’ and ‘what should the document exclude’.
Avoid constructing weak sentences:
Weak sentences are those which begin with redundant verbs or weak verbs which reduce the effectiveness of the sentence in several ways.
In some cases, the sentence becomes meaningless and in some cases the sentence does not carry the intended meaning effectively.
A sentence can be framed in this manner which appears to ‘hide the verb’: There was a certain stint of truth in the testimony provided by the lawyer.
Or the sentence can be framed in this manner to ‘focus on the verb’: A stint of truth exists in the lawyer’s testimony.
In the above case, it can be observed that ‘stint of truth’ is the focus verb which gives meaning to the sentence The earlier sentence hides it whereas the later sentence focuses on it, making it a more effective and easy to understand sentence.
In order to be concise, the writer should avoid constructing sentences which contain too many words.
A sentence can be framed in this manner which appears ‘too complex to understand’: There is no denying that excessive alcohol consumption in the young age can lead to an abrupt & unhealthy aging process. (21 words)
Or the sentence can be framed in this manner for ‘enhancing the ease of understanding’: Alcohol consumption in the young age can lead to an abrupt & unhealthy aging process. (15 words)
Use of Active & Passive voice:
Passive voice makes the sentence overly complicated and consequently the sentence may also lose its intended meaning.
This is the reason ‘why use of passive voice should be avoided in most cases’.
Passive voice is ideally used only in the rare case which requires the writer to hide the doer of the action or the gender of the doer and this is done to avoid discrimination.
Active voice adds a strong impact on the readers mind and makes the sentence of direct significance to the reader by addressing the reader.
Passive Voice: The artist’s performance will be managed by the the event management team from London.
Active Voice: The event management team from London will manage the artist’s performance.
Avoid the use of redundant words/ phrases:
A sentence can easily become meaningless with the use of redundant words or phrases. Let us see how this can be avoided:
Incorrect Meaning: It is undoubtedly true that bikers should wear a helmet while riding for short as well as long distance travels. (How is it possible to ride the travel?)
Correct Meaning: Bikers should ensure their safety by wearing a helmet for both short and long distance type of traveling.
Hope that my tips will brighten your content!
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