Making Word of Mouth Effective and Persuasive

Wednesday, March 04, 2009
Even though I probably have my hands in more projects than I ought to at the moment, something came up in my academic-type life that I felt needed to be addressed this week. I found that the state where I attended college is like much of the U.S. and in some financial troubles, and on the list of things that could end up on the chopping block this spring/early summer include the department I majored my studies in...oh no!

Given I live too far away and graduated, I looked for things I could do, and somehow stumbled upon a topic for today's blog posting: what are some ways to using writing for a cause, and more specifically, how to be an effective persuasive writer.

So far, I have used my organizational skills to draft lists of ideas to share cross-country with my former professors and classmates of things that could be done, and on top of that list, I had taking the grassroots live to the Internet. With my internships, I have learned how truly valuable a resource free blog domains are in getting the word out.

I suggested hitting up newspapers and also websites which allow for public comment posts. The more exposure this gets, the more likely people will feel engaged.

Additionally, I have written letters and emails to administrative types, and likely will continue onward to politicians if I have time before leaving for Missouri this weekend for work-related workshops.

As for the ways to be an effective persuasive writer, let me suggest the following:
1) Take it positively in your spin. Let them think that you don't feel that the other side is stupid, wrong, inferior, what have you.

2) Take it on respectfully. Don't forget to allow for further correspondence with making your last paragraph a thank you for your time and if there are any questions closing.

3) Take it on by using lists. Short, simple, to the point. I recommend writing out a tome to get all the ideas organized and the flow down pat before massively editing it down to short and crisp.

4) Make it specific and unique. Nothing is less persuasive than just receiving copies of essentially the same banalities over and over again. I used my personal experience of choosing the school and weaved in ideas that were suggested to us to mention by our department. It doesn't feel pushed, yet doesn't seem rambling either.

5) Followup with any correspondence that comes out of this and give time before sending another round.

6) Make sure if it's a group effort, that you keep in touch and keep everyone updated, so repeat efforts don't waste time. Not looking organized only reduces the efficacy of your persuasiveness!

In closing, this is just a partial list of things to get great minds (you all!) to think of other ways people can be effective persuasive writers and how writing can help in causes, whether saving academic departments or saving the world/environment, etc.

What other types of writing for causes have you done? What other ways can be implemented to be a strong persuasive writer? These ideas are for the benefit of the WOW audience, as I am already working on things beyond this list of ideas, but thought maybe there might be a need for some brainstorming elsewhere in this world of writers...


Joanne said...

I actually have an appointment tomorrow with a college dean to discuss an issue that has come up. Though the meeting is face-to-face, what I found in preparing my notes for it is that my writing skills greatly helped me outline the points I need to verbally address, in a clear, succinct manner. To be able to build credibility from Point A to Point B and C is almost like building the plot in a novel!

Anonymous said...

I would definitely agree with everything in your post. I also believe that in order to persuade your audience you must be original.Thanks for the useful tips.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your thoughts. I am going to have my cousin read this because I am working with her to promote a prject she is working on. The points you made will educate her in a way I couldn't. Thank you again for the info.
Jo Ann Hernandez

Publishing Articles said...

Now a days when people talks about the same thing, sounds like nothing is original. To find an old post like this freshen up my mind:-)

Powered by Blogger.
Back to Top