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You MUST Break the Laws of “Content Punctuation” to Drive Conversion

May 22, 2016

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Imagine producing articles that are so captivating your readers stay fascinated until the very end and immediately sign up to learn more about your product… Now just imagine that those articles were written full of grammar mistakes and wrongly used punctuation that would give your Academic English teacher a heart attack.

Today’s internet reader is not interested in the “how it should be written” but whether the article is interesting or not and if it keeps him captivated throughout his read – And it’s your job to keep him fascinated, not impress him with your grammar skills.

Content Punctuation

Apart from the obvious of having a killer concept, there are ways that you can buzz up your copy by simply breaking the laws of “Content Punctuation”.

Creating such a scenario may appear difficult, but it’s easier than you might think!

So, how should you combine punctuation, italics, tone of voice, passion, and relating with your audience, to truly influence the way your readers feel about your writing?

The short of It:

  • Know your users and use a style of writing that connects to your readers. By using a more direct and personal tone, you can remove the screen between you and your readers.
  • Carefully select where and when to use italics. Your readers will be able to hear your tone of voice.
  • Add in special characters, such as exclamation points and dashes, to spice up your content. This will help keep your users engaged and aware.
  • Capitalize all the initial letters of H1 and H2 headers, allowing these sentences to stand out and become organized.
  • Be passionate about the topic you are writing- or at least make your readers believe you’re passionate. Not only will they sense the sincerity of the topic, but search engines also share a tendency to notice quality content too, leading towards higher search rankings and more drive towards your message.

You CAN drive conversion through your articles – you just have to be willing to think outside the box. DON’T be afraid to break the laws of content punctuation, as it will keep your readers curious, fascinated, quite possibly astonished, and definitely wanting more!

Always remember, no one wants to have a conversation with a boring, monotone individual – the same goes for writing content! Viewers do not want to sit through 1500 words, or even 200 words of content that is not engaging. Express your passion in your writing, show some personality, and in turn you will be rewarded.

So now that we understand the basics, let’s go into detail and give you some practical guidelines on how to spice up your content.

The Long of It:

1) Connect Directly With Your Audience:

Connecting Content Punctuation

This isn’t really to do with punctuation, but it is the first thing you need to understand in order to drive conversion from your content.

Who’s your audience? Tailor your writing style directly to them. They are the ones reading, after all, so make their time spent enjoyable! Develop content that provides viewers with the proper information, but also leaves them wanting more. Your users do not want to feel as if their time is being wasted, so be clear and concise with your writing, but also find enough of a balance to embellish your works with detail. This all enhances their experience.

If you are writing articles on law, for example, you may want to have a more formal tone. This does not mean make the content boring – just keep it accessible to a professional audience. On the other hand, if you are writing content about music, popular culture, news, cinema, gaming, etc, it is perfectly acceptable- and even encouraged- to use a casual language and embellish your writing style with elements that will keep your demographic enthralled about your writing.

Pin-pointing an audience is a foundational element to establishing an article writing process that will increase your conversion.

2) When and When Not to Use Italics:

Content Italic

The presence of italics is a useful tool. By breaking up the similarity of words, you are giving the audience an opportunity to see and experience your content with fresh eyes. Now, not only can you relay the information you want and need to- you can also add in emphasis while still retaining a clear syntax. Some writers use bolding as a replacement for italics, but sometimes bold words can pop out too much. Italics are a little more subtle to the eyes, preventing readers from becoming distracted.

Italics, however, can become over used- so be wary of this! You don’t want to irritate your readers; this would be counterintuitive towards your vision of driving conversion. Only italicize words that truly serve a purpose in improving voicing, but still keep your clarity. Do not fluff up articles with too many extra elements just to seem fancy. Rather, keep things simple and to the point, without making them dull. Your readers will thank you for it!

3) Embellishing Your Already Killer Content With Special Characters:

If it fits in with your audience demographic, utilize your special characters. Special characters such as exclamation points (!) and dashes (-) add an extra touch to the already killer voicing of your articles. If something is exciting, why not express it by ending the statement with an exclamation point? Of course, don’t make every sentence seem like one that should get you pumped, rather there should be specific moments within your content that can enthrall your viewers. Take advantage of these fun and engaging moments.

Dashes (-) serve as a brilliant way to pause a thought, without having to use the same old method of placing commas or periods. A dash can certainly replace a comma or a period in many circumstances.

Here’s what we mean:

“Engage readers in your brilliantly composed content by keeping the writing fresh and exciting, yet to the point. Drive conversion and increase audience views.”

vs.

“Engage readers in your brilliantly composed content by keeping the writing fresh and exciting, yet to the point – driving conversion and increasing audience views!”

Which of the two examples feels more exciting?
Which of the two examples keeps you more engaged?

Although the first example is grammatically correct and a perfectly acceptable way to compose a statement, the second example captivates your audience and switches up typical word and punctuation patterns, proving a new perspective to their anticipating eyes.

Asking questions also assists in reader absorption- dragging your audience in and not letting go until the very end of the article. Questions allow readers to stop and think about a statement – to truly ponder and consider their options.

This promoting of free thought can increase their motivation regarding a specific topic, allowing them to experience true freedom while committing to the learning of your important content. Writing articles is a lot like any social relationship – you must give the audience a freedom to think for themselves, yet provide them with the appropriate guidelines that will assist them to delve deeper. The idea is to not control your readers, but rather point them in the right direction.

4) Capitalize the Initial Letters of H1 and H2 Headers:

H1 and H2 headers serve as an organizational element to keep readers from becoming confused. Say you want to know about a specific section of a topic? Having clear and concise H1 and H2 headers allows a viewer to easily discover the section of an article they’d like to read. Best of all, if the entire piece is captivating, a reader who initially only wanted to view one section could become a reader that continues till the very end.

It is a well-known fact that H1 and H2 headers contain words carefully selected by the author, so why not capitalize the first letter of each word? This will increase emphasis on the words you spent so much time choosing. Best of all, if you truly want to accentuate a few specific phrases, place the entire word in all caps, just like the word ‘MUST’ in the title of this article. This isn’t utilizing correct grammatics, but who cares- this is adding to the brilliance of your audience driving content!

5) Be PASSIONATE

Love Content

If you choose to only take one element of this article to heart, let it be this one. Always write to your audience with passion. It might not seem that important to you, but trust us, it’s a vital element to developing a killer article. Passion will overcome all. With this being said, if an audience can’t connect with the voice of a work, they won’t be able to withstand the entire article and the content will fail to drive conversion. If the writing is clearly passionate, your readers will sense this emotion and hold onto it. Through passion, you can inspire your audience with content, and in the end, an inspired audience is one that drives conversion.

When writing your next article don’t be so rigid. Shake it up a little and break your writing rules. If you are performance oriented, you will definitely see the difference.

If you’ve got to the end of this article, then you have to read:

How to Create BORING Content That Drives Conversion

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About the Author
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Adam Perl
Adam Perl is VP Marketing at TechSors, a digital agency that specialises in Content marketing and Web Development. Adam's work experience spans 10+ years of strategic marketing & planning for online international companies in the financial, gaming, eCommerce and the travel industry.