Through the years, I’ve been a writing hack – or creative writer – for many a business entity. Writing for any business – whether for someone else’s or your own – contains many similar elements. First up – what’s your goal? If creating an action is your intended goal, the infamous “call to action” pertains. However, subtlety can provide a reader with a growing sense of urgency to take action. Envision your intended audience. The writing takes on a more personal and vivid appeal if someone is your audience. If it’s your Uncle Bob or your best friend from high school, you’re channeling your muse. When I developed a campaign to stop waste in a production process, symbols and overt rewards came into play. The international “stop” symbol got people’s attention.
A reward at the end of the campaign helped the company reach its target – and better. Numbers are great visuals, but only if the numbers can be humanized and made concrete. Fundraising campaigns, like Kickstarter, translate the money into tangible items and results by deadlines. People can relate to time crunch deadlines – but only if it makes sense. With a natural disaster, the sense of urgency is great. Three days without water, trapped by a mudslide or victims of a tornado are situations eliciting compassion and concern. And, if crafted well, the message elicits a willingness to contribute to a rescue mission. Even without a disaster to overcome, copy can achieve amazing results. Be evocative with words your audience can understand. For example, Alka Seltzer reached its buyers with “Plop! Plop! Fizz! Fizz! Oh, what a relief it is.” (Rhyming helps, too.)
Solve someone’s problem and you’re their new BFF. Be the solution to a problem – or imply one – and you’ll succeed in business or entertainment writing. But, play nice – don’t lie! And, have fun!