We’re obsessed with writing conversationally. No, really! That’s why Wizu products use natural voice. It matters! But a conversational tone isn’t about writing just like you talk. It’s more nuanced than that. So, we’ve put together 8 tips to get you thinking.
1) Stop with the big words
Probably the most important point. Who are you trying to impress anyway? If you alienate your respondents, you’ve lost out. Drop the thesaurus and use the first words that come to mind. Your respondents will thank you for it.
2) Write for a single reader
Make everything a one-on-one chat. Avoid statements like ‘thank you to everyone who…’ That gives the game away. It reminds your readers that they’re just part of a mass survey. No one wants to feel like a number. So, instead, use ‘you’ when you’re talking to the reader. It’s way more personal.
3) Share how you’re helping
When you’re asking your readers to do something, tell them how they’ll benefit. Instead of ‘we will be sending you discounts via email’ say, ‘you’ll save money with weekly coupons.’ Not only is it more active (which respondents love), it’s more compelling. You’ll see more responses, too.
4) Get more personal
Why do you check your personality at the door when writing for customers? It’s weird, no? Most of us have fun anecdotes or personal experience that would sell our product well. Stop thinking about case studies and start telling stories… just like you would to your best mate.
5) Throw out the rule-book
Your English professor from Uni won’t read this. That means you can start sentences with ‘or’, ‘and’ or ‘but’ if you want to. And you should! It’s easier to read. Leave the Oxford commas and colons as home, too. Changing the sentence openers up really helps with readability.
6) Use short sentences
If you’re anything like us, you can string a sentence together with loads of commas or semicolons to make a grammatically-perfect monster that turns readers completely blue in the face; but that’s not how you’re going to engage respondents. (Ten points if you made it through that sentence in one breath.) If anything, all it’ll do is boost your drop-out rate. Use shorter sentences. Stop using five words when three will do. Your customers will thank you.
7) Write for the robots
Write for a 12-year-old. You’ll need to do this for both questions and your responses. Think of how someone will ask Google Home or Alexa for the info. Then just write to answer that question.
8) Mix questions and statements
Keep your reader engaged by asking them to think. It’s hard to ignore a question. Don’t believe me? Didn’t you just start thinking about whether you agree? It’s hard not to. Questions help to break up a flow of declarative statements, and statements can help break up a long survey of questions. You’ll help your readers make it to the end by maintaining their interest.
Wasn’t that helpful? There are some gems you can probably use right away! Don’t let conversational writing stop at your static content though. Let’s talk about how we can help you say the right thing in real-time too. Ping us a message now and let’s chat about our conversational customer surveys.