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Vikki Maver: How to Write for an Online Audience

Vikki Maver: How to Write for an Online Audience

With so much emphasis on a website’s look and feel, content is often nothing more than an afterthought. But to truly engage with our audience we need to create content that is clear, simply, succinct – and human. Special writing techniques are needed. This presentation will help people create more persuasive and effective online content.

WP Australia

April 27, 2013

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  1. Wri$ng  for  Your     Online  Audience   Vikki Maver

    @vikkimaver vikki@refreshmarketing.com.au
  2. Welcome  to  our  site,  we  hope  you   will  find

     our  new  and  improved   design  helpful.  
  3. This  change  will  allow  us  to  better   leverage  our

     talent  base  in  an  area   where  developmental  roles  are  under   way  and  strategically  focuses  us   toward  the  upcoming  Business  System   transition  where  Systems  literacy  and   accuracy  will  be  essential  to  maintain   and  to  further  improve  service  levels   to  our  customer  base  going  forward.  
  4. Go  to  the  top  of  this  page,  click  on  

    application  form  on  the  right-­‐hand   side,  download  it,  and  then  fill  it   out.  
  5. Please  click  here  to  contact  the   Holistic  Massage  Therapy

     team  or  click   here  to  submit  an  online  enquiry.  
  6. Outline   1.  Knowing  your  audience   2.  Three  facts

     about  your  online  audience   3.  Six  pillars  of  web  wri=ng      
  7. Knowing  your  audience   Wri=ng  good   content   doesn’t

     start   with  typing   words.  It   starts  with   finding  out   about  your   audience.    
  8. Ques$ons  to  ask  about    your   audience   • 

    Demographics       •  What  do  they  value?   •  What  mo=vates  them?   •  What  are  they  saying?  What  words   would  they  use?       •  What  problem  or  pain  are  you   trying  to  solve?   •  How  are  they  feeling?   •  How  much  do  they  know?   •  What  do  they  already  believe?      
  9. Three  facts  about  your     online  audience  

  10. They  don’t  want  to     read  your  content  

    •  Eyes  move  at  amazing  speeds  across  your  precious  words.     •  People  read  about  28%  of  the  text  on  a  webpage  at  most.   But  20%  is  more  likely.     •  The  longer  the  text,  the  less  they  read.  
  11. They  don’t  care  about  you   •  People  don’t  care

     about   your  organisa=on  -­‐  they   just  want  to  know  how  it   will  benefit  them.   •  A  good  quick  check:  does   the  word  ‘you’  appear   more  than  the  word  ‘we’?  
  12. Our  vision  is  to  craft  quality  apartments  and   homes

     in  bright-­‐life  places,  places  where   there’s  a  vibrancy  of  people  and  a  hum  of   energy.  We  create  to  inspire,  free  and  enrich   lifestyles.  Our  creations  are  brought  to  life   by  brilliant  architects  who  embody  our  ideas   in  their  cutting-­‐edge  design,  exciting   architecture  and  quality  finishes.      
  13. Do  you  want  more  time  to  enjoy  life?    

      We  offer  apartment  living  with  all  the  luxury   and  convenience  you  could  wish  for.     • Action  and  entertainment  on  your  doorstep.   • No  time  wasted  on  long  commutes  or  domestic   upkeep.   • A  quality,  modern  new  home  you’ll  adore!  
  14. They  don’t  believe  you   Today’s  consumers   despise  hype

     and   anything  else  that   insults  their   intelligence        
  15. The  6  pillars  of            

  16. Pillar  1   CLARITY  

  17.    Clarity   •  Clarity  is  the  goal  in  

    wri=ng;  the  main  prize.     •  It’s  surprisingly  hard  to   achieve  because  so  many   sentences  as  they’re  first   wri`en,  tend  to  come   out  just  a  li`le  wrong.  
  18. A  significant  percentage  of  the   youth  sector  are  [sic]

      prematurely  disengaging  from   educational  opportunities.  
  19. A  lot  of  young  people  are   leaving  school  early.

  20. Pillar 2 SIMPLICITY

  21.    Simplicity     Get  rid  of  clu`er:   • 

    unnecessary  words     •  meaningless  jargon     •  pompous  frills     We  are  not  wri=ng   for  the  sake  of   wri=ng    
  22. Replace  long  words  ...   Frequently   Alternatively   Regarding

      Reiterate   Accompanying   Converse   Aspiration                                 Indicate   Definitive   Construct   Expiration   Fundamental   Requirement   Endeavour                
  23.    [Company  X]  has  remained  faithful  in  its   commitment

     to  producing  unparalleled   entertainment  experiences  based  on  its  rich   legacy  of  quality  creative  content  and   exceptional  storytelling.  Today,  [Company  X]   is  divided  into  four  major  business   segments...Each  segment  consists  of   integrated,  well-­‐connected  businesses  that   operate  in  concert  to  maximize  exposure  and   growth  worldwide.  
  24. That’s  a  lot  of  jargon  to   describe    

  25. Pillar 3 BREVITY

  26.  Brevity       •  Short  words   •  Short

     sentences     •  Short  paragraphs  
  27. Situated  in  cosmopolitan  Macrossan  Street,  just  140   metres  from

     magnificent  Four-­‐Mile  Beach,  divine  views   of  rainforest,  mountains  and  blue  seas  can  be  enjoyed   in  absolute  privacy  from  a  choice  of  33  glamorous   holiday  apartments  that  come  complete  with  their  own   outdoor  entertaining  terrace  –  extending  seamlessly   from  sophisticated  living  areas  –  so  self  contained,   you  will  never  want  to  leave.   58  words  
  28. As  the  year  draws  to  a  close  and  we  anticipate

     what   2013  will  hold  for  us,  hopefully  we  will  all  have  some   time  to  ponder  our  circumstances  and  reflect  on  what   has  gone  well  for  us  this  year  and  how  we  can  perhaps   capitalise  further  from  these  opportunities  in  the  New   Year,  and  then  to  also  consider  what  hasn’t  turned  out   as  we  hoped  and  how  we  can  learn  from  these   disappointments  or  failures  and  apply  these   experiences  into  the  future.     81  words  
  29. No. of Words Level of Comprehension 8 or less Very

    easy 9 – 11 Easy 12 – 14 ` Fairly easy 15 – 17 Standard 18 – 21 Fairly difficult 22 – 25 Difficult 26 – 30 Very difficult Beyond 30 Don’t go there!
  30. Brevity  makes  things  clearer   In  a  timely  manner  

              During  the  course  of           The  vast  majority  of           In  the  normal  course  of  events         At  this  moment  in  time     On  a  daily  basis               The  month  of  September               In  the  not  too  distant  future           We  are  of  the  opinion  that           Perform  an  analysis  of             Prior  to  the  commencement  of           It  would  be  appreciated  if                      
  31. ‘Get rid of half the words on each page, then

    get rid of half of what's left.’   Steve Krug Web Usability Guru
  32. Pillar 4 HUMANITY

  33. Humanity   Be  more  natural  –  write  more  like  how

     you   would  speak  to  a  friend  or  colleague  and  less   like  how  you  would  for  a  brochure.  
  34. Clare  Valley's  Youth  Counselling  Service   provides  counselling  for  young

     people   aged  12-­‐25  years  who  live,  work,  study  or   recreate  within  the  municipality.   Counselling  is  a  free  and  confidential   service  available  to  young  people.  As   part  of  this  service,  a  youth  counsellor   can  provide  information  and  referrals  to   other  services  for  the  young  person.  
  35. Would  you  like  someone  to  talk  to?   Someone  you

     can  trust  and  confide  in?   If  you're  between  12  and  25  and  live,  work   or  study  within  the  local  area,  then  our   Youth  Counselling  Service  may  interest  you.   Counselling  is  free  and  confidential.  
  36. Pillar 5 SCAN-ABILITY

  37. Scan-­‐ability   1.  Get  to  your  point   quickly  

    2.  Use  headings  and   subheadings   3.  Use  lists   4.  Emphasise  keywords   and  phrases   5.  Descrip=ve  linking  
  38. Pillar  6   CREDIBILITY  

  39. Credibility   •  Don’t  market,  communicate        

    •  Don’t  exaggerate     •  Ditch  the  jargon,  clichés  and   corporate  waffle   •  Fight  the  fluff  –  subs=tute   general  descrip=ons  with   specific  facts   •  Proofread        
  40. Thank you! Vikki Maver @vikkimaver vikki@refreshmarketing.com.au