Writing is much more than a skill set.
It’s a mind set.
Clear, vibrant persuasive writing is much more than communication.
It’s evidence of clear thinking.
In a world where obscure, confusing, manipulative writing is too often accepted as the “norm,” companies who connect through straightforward crisp words fused with relevant stories will be the ones that lead.
Master the basics of writing – so you don’t cringe when you’re copied on an email that goes out with errors in it.
Write emails and documents that are designed to persuade the recipient to take action – and aren’t getting the response they need.
Communicate in a way that connects – but they don’t know how to balance their personal writing voice with the professional voice of your organization.
Understand why great writing is essential to succeed in their specific roles within your company.
Avoid common (and not so common) writing mistakes, and learn what to do instead to distinguish your company in the eyes of those you do business with.
Master the ability to put readers’ perspectives before their own to move the needle forward on important projects and initiatives (this is one of the most important “tips” or “tricks” they can use in any type of writing).
Adopt the mindset and skills to write in a way that motivates a reader to take action.
Compile best writing practices for crafting emails, proposals, and other documents that are reader centered, persuasive, engaging and easy to act upon.
Use simple strategies to create drafts – they will know when to give a draft time to “percolate” and when it can be dashed off quickly.
Understand modern grammar and sentence structure rules – and when it’s okay – even desirable – to break them.
Progress from competence in to mastery of storytelling in the context of professional communication.
Think critically about what good copy is and the ways they can use it to foster growth within the company.
Claim ownership of and leadership within their writing.
Whether your employees dash off quick emails, craft social media updates or are responsible for longer, more in depth pieces (in-house or outward facing), writing is at the core of all of it.
“Copy” is persuasive writing – with a goal to get someone to do something. It’s not passive, it’s active. It’s not simply passing along information, it’s advocating for a position. Copy is how businesses communicate – and no current cultural trend (shortened attention spans, chronic “busyness,” the slow, painful demise of legible cursive writing) will ever diminish its importance as a skill.
Identify which writing mistakes they are making, and how to fix them.
Learn writing structures and practices that move people to action.
Understand what everything they write is really about and who it’s for (hint: it’s not about or for them or your company).
Develop simple rules to guide each piece they write.
Walk away equipped with actionable checklists, tools and exercises to use for crafting emails, social media updates and other important writing throughout their careers.
Some business writing is designed to simply transmit information – that’s NOT what we address in this module. The majority of what your team members write must persuade on some level. To persuade is to advocate for a position, and convince or inspire the reader to take action.
A few examples of persuasive writing in business:
Social media updates
Master the most important skill needed to persuade someone in writing – empathy!
Learn to write clear concise pieces designed to elicit the desired response.
Reverse engineer the persuasion process to make writing persuasive documents (short or long) faster and easier.
Develop customized, disciplined-yet-flexible writing, editing and feedback solicitation practices to make the most of their thinking and writing time.
Walk away having rewritten something they wrote before, knowing exactly how to strengthen and create new writing going forward.
Storytelling is a channel for human connection. It’s your company point of view on steroids. Telling relevant stories is the heart of persuasion. Relevant stories woven into your business communication will not only help your team members persuade, it will influence everything from your internal culture, to your business voice and tone, to the way people on the “outside” see and talk about your company.
Select and tell clear compelling stories that connect with readers.
Reverse engineer the storytelling process to discern why, when and how a story is a) appropriate for a particular piece of writing and b) will aid in persuasion.
Distinguish between stories that are relevant to your business initiatives and those that are needless regurgitation of narrative no one cares about.
Discern how to consistently deliver value in written pieces – as opposed to simply passing along information.
Walk away with their own customized “story book” containing ideas, structures, and questions designed to help them practice storytelling in their writing throughout their careers.
To truly make a dent in your market (and the world) your company must persuade in all forms of writing – from 140 character social media updates to 10,000 word (and beyond) articles and reports.
Part art and part science, persuasive writing incorporates . . .
. . . to create pieces that educate, captivate, engage and make an impact – on your company’s customers, bottom line, and legacy. Based on your organization’s goals, we may cover:
Identify opportunities (online or offline) where your company can (and should) have a presence – and create a plan to capitalize on that opportunity through a combination of strategy and writing.
Create dynamic profiles of the “customers” you are trying to reach – using an agile combination of measurable research, first-hand knowledge, intuition and empathic reasoning – this is the work mediocre writers skip, and yet is absolutely crucial to connect and persuade.
Learn to use interviews to demystify the wants, needs and emotional triggers of the person/people they seek to persuade.
Have a firm grasp of the structure, content and parameters of the persuasive documents they plan to write – and plenty of time to write sections of those documents and receive feedback in real time (in a safe, workshop environment).
Develop their own personal writing voice and tone that impeccably complements your company voice and tone – so they maintain their individual identities when speaking on behalf of the company.