Thursday, November 29, 2007

WRITING FOR AN ONLINE AUDIENCE

by Deanna Roux, published in The Storque, Etsy.com

My last job was for a corporate communications department - in employee communications. I was assistant editor for an employee magazine and online publisher for an employee intranet. I have some good info to share that I think you can use for writing up shop listings and blogs.

Let me begin by saying this – I’m not done learning. Times change, technology changes, and peoples’ needs change. Things are always evolving and you have to keep up if you want to stand out.

With that said, here’s where we were last I checked.

What’s In It For me?

People have little time and even less patience. Readers want to know “what’s in it for me?” in the first few seconds, otherwise they‘ll move on. Potential customers are consumers of your writing. Wow them with your art, but grab them with your voice first. And don’t wait until the end of your blog post to present a call to action (e.g. sign up, join, visit me, etc.).

Write As If Your Audience Doesn’t Know Anything

You are the expert of what you create. You know the size, length, and dimensions. You know the materials and components. Your words should tell the story your photos can’t. Don’t make them search. A shopper wants to know if it’s sterling silver or plated; cotton or rayon; and porcelain or ceramic.

KISS – Keep It Simple And Short

Yes, you need details, but don’t overwhelm the reader right to the nearest exit. Reserve space for sharing your personal views, techniques and inspirations. Go back and read what you wrote. Remove big words used only to impress and information that is redundant. Don’t drown your clever cut of meat with too much gravy.




Trick: Don't know all the ins and outs of Photoshp? Create a simple box with text and clipart in Word or PowerPoint - then paste it into a new Photoshop doc. Now just "save as" a .jpg.


Speed Bumps

It’s your job to slow the online eye. Give your reader something to stumble upon. Instead of using a large block of text, break it up. Use bullets to make a list easier to read. Use caps and/or boldface to make subtitles in your post pop. The use of whitespace will give the eye a break and it’ll make your blurb easier to read.


So what do you think? Are you up for the challenge? The challenge is not “writing.” The challenge is “taming the writer within.” So here’s your whip and here’s your chair. Now go tame.

4 comments:

In My Head Studios said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
In My Head Studios said...

Great post and a great example of exactly what you are talking about! KISS!

(I don't know what happened to my previous comment. The web ate it.)

misscourageous said...

thank you for such informative info! I'll be starting a blog after the holidays when I've got more time to focus!

DrKeithCurrie said...

Nice, I'm learning Photoshop so resources & Article is more need.