The best way to get someone to listen to what you have to say is to position yourself as a person of authority. But with none of us truly being an expert on any subject, how can we possibly expect anyone – never mind tens if not hundreds of people online – to read and appreciate our words?
Why writing with authority is important
Authority makes you powerful and with that power you can influence people to take actions such as:
* Change (or consider changing) their opinion on a topic
* Subscribe to a mailing list
* Buy a product or service
* Click a link
* Follow you on social media
Writing with authority also significantly increases the likelihood of readers bookmarking and returning to your site to read your content in the future, which will cascade into you being able to further influence that visitor and anyone else he or she introduces to your site.
The elements of writing content with substance
Before you set your pen to paper or your fingers to a keyboard, it is important that the following elements be used when writing powerful content:
* Information cited must be well researched and from credible sources (including quotes from experts, statistical information and use specific examples)
* You must have the right credentials to write about the topic (including personal experiences)
* You must present a reasonable argument in your content
* Your content must have a clear call to action
How to write with authority
In order to build authority, you have to position yourself as an expert through your words. First and most importantly:
1. Be concise and to the point
Many writers mistakenly believe that writing to a certain word count or using complex words is what will make them appear reliable and trustworthy in the eyes of others. The fact is that the most powerful writing is that which is simple, to the point and has value.
2. Don’t write “hedging” statements
Hedging a statement will make you appear fearful, cautious or timid. Powerful content creators are committed to taking the plunge and offering a concrete opinion
Try to avoid common “hedge” words like:
* Could (i.e. “The fire could have been caused by a candle”)
* Might (i.e.“The fire might have been caused by a candle”)
* Seem (i.e.“It would seem the fire was caused by a candle”)
* Possible (i.e.“It is possible the fire was caused by a candle”)
* Perhaps (i.e.“Perhaps the fire was caused by a candle”)
* Usually (i.e.“Usually fires like this are caused by a candle”)
* Probably (i.e.“The fire was probably caused by a candle”)
Avoid tentative or cautious language and make clear statements, which in this case would be “the fire was caused by a candle”.
3. Offer an alternative point of view
Another way to establish yourself as an authority figure is to offer an alternative point of view to what may be commonly accepted or formerly recognised as being true. Tread carefully when taking this approach, however, and make sure that your content is well researched and well thought-out.
Writing with authority takes practise and patience
Producing authoritative content is not easy, but it will have a greater impact on your readership than passive or inconclusive content. Writing with authority will increase engagement, boost the number of shares your content receives, and ultimately broaden your reach online.
If writing with authority, or writing at all, doesn’t come easily to you, we can help. At Kerry Finch Writing we invest time in learning about your business, its goals, and its competitors so that we can create superior written content for you. We produce authoritative and engaging content for online businesses, and internet marketing consultants, and their clients.