What Are the 5 Features of Effective Writing?
Writing is about more than putting words on a piece of paper or on a screen and leaving them there merely to exist. As a business writer, you strive to write with a purpose and to share your business’s message with your audience. Distraction free writing helps you clear your mind so that you can focus on your subject. Improving your writing techniques allows you to use your distraction free time to create content worth reading. To improve those techniques, you must first understand what effective writing is.
What Is Effective Writing?
The simple response: readable content. A lot goes into making content readable! We aren’t just talking about content that follows all the rules of writing. Are there rules in writing, you might ask? Yes, there are some technical rules that you should follow. For example, proper punctuation and proper grammar are always a must. Keeping your language concise and using quotes correctly are others.
When it comes down to it, though, effective writing is more than just following these rules. Effective writing means communicating a clear focus or subject to your reader that will leave a lasting impact. Organization and style can help make your message clearer. To better understand effective writing, let’s look at its five features.
Why Is Effective Writing Important?
Effective writing is the key to communicating with your reader. As a business writer, your business relies on you to get its message across through your content. Effective writing is impactful writing, writing that makes the reader think about what you wrote after they’ve read it. According to Chartbeat, a technology company that gives companies insight into audience engagement, people who read an article for three minutes return to that business’s website two times as often as people who read an article for only one minute. The more effective your writing is, the longer your readers will stay engaged reading your work, and the more often they will return to your business’s site for more content. To aid in your business’s success, hone your effective writing skills.
What Are the Characteristics of Effective Writing?
- Focus: This feature is the big one. Without it, there would be no reason to write. It is the topic established by you, the writer, for whatever content you are creating. We are talking about something specific, and it often involves solving a problem or helping your customer do something, such as saving time or money. It’s what keeps the reader engaged because you’re addressing their needs. If you want to expand beyond your focus, go for it, but only in a way that enhances your focus, rather than veering away from it.
- Organization: You have your focus down. Now you have to organize all those related ideas in a way that keeps the reader attentive. Without organization, your point won’t be clear or effective. Organization is the way your ideas relate to one another, how you progress from one idea to another, and how complete your thoughts are. You should have a beginning, a middle, and an end that make sense. One way to get organized is to create an outline for yourself that shows where you will put ideas and how you will connect them before you get into the details. Our software, Slice, can help in the outlining process by helping you work on one section of your content at a time.
- Development: Development is all about elaborating upon your ideas with supporting details that relate to the focal point of your writing. Essentially, developing your writing means making your message more persuasive, more powerful, and more impactful. Think of this feature as your way to win a debate of sorts. An argument will impact your reader much more if you have information to back up what you write. Provide information on why your customer should see your focus the way you do. When possible, use statistics and facts to develop your message.
- Style: Choose words and sentence structures that best suit both the audience and the topic of your writing. For example, you may use jargon in a piece of writing geared towards professionals who have knowledge related to your company’s product or service. However, you should avoid using jargon in writing geared towards lay people who have no prior knowledge of your product or service. Use the language and sentence structure that most effectively present your focus to the targeted audience.
- Grammar: Your writing can’t be effective if your reader can’t read it. While grammar may not be the most enjoyable part of writing, it is an important one. Grammatical convention consists of sentence structure, punctuation, spelling, and capitalization. If you do not edit for grammar, the writing itself can distract the reader from your message until they give up entirely. Pay attention to the grammar, and you’ll write a much more effective piece of content. Software like Grammarly assist you in finding errors in grammar, spelling, and clarity.
How Can Slice Help?
Slice can aid you in improving your writing skills. One of the easiest ways to miss the mark on some of the five features of effective writing is by not keeping your thoughts straight when you start the writing process. Slice helps you focus on your content by allowing you to keep all your sources and content in one place and to split those sources and content into sections so that you can focus on one idea at a time. If you want to improve your effective writing skills, but your thoughts whirlwind too much for you to do so, try Slice.