18 July 2016
Nobody Wants To Read Your Shit
There are many thoughts, ideologies and methods when it comes to marketing. Some good, some great and some like the below, amazing.The below passages are taken from a book called Nobody Wants To Read Your Shit by Steven Pressfiied and you can’t argue with it. From a career in five different writing fields: advertising, screenwriting, fiction, narrative nonfiction and self help, Steven’s book has given some great advice to many in the advertising world.
I implore you to read the below extract and then purchase the book. The lessons you will learn from this are invaluable.
“The first thing you learn in advertising is that no one wants to read your shit.
Your ads I mean.
People hate ads. I hate them myself.
I hate TV commercials.
Why should I waste my valuable time watching that lying garbage, trying to sell me crap I don’t need or want?
Sometimes young writers acquire the idea from their years in school that the world is waiting to read what they’ve written.
They get this idea because their teachers had to read their essays, or term papers, or dissertations.
In the real world no one is waiting to read what you’ve written.
Sight unseen they hate what you’ve written.
Because they might have to actually read it.
Nobody wants to read anything.
Let me repeat that.
Nobody – not even your dog or your mother – has the slightest interest in your commercial for Rice Crispies or Delco batteries or Preparation H.
Nor does anybody care about your one-act play, your Facebook page or your new sesame chicken joint at Canal and Tchoupitoulas.
It isn’t that people are mean or cruel.
They’re just busy.
Nobody wants to read your shit.”
Although these words may seem harsh, they do in fact have a lot of truth in them. So what’s the solution for us in the marketing, PR and advertising world?
Cut to the chase
These days audiences have less time than ever before and they want their information quickly. Therefore, try to make your message as succinct and streamlined as possible. Hone in on what’s important and lay it out in simple, easy to digest terms.
Have a little fun
Make your content interesting. You want your words to captivate your audience so that they feel they’d be insane NOT to read them.
By applying these two simple rules and by understanding that essentially, nobody wants to read your shit, you will begin to understand that writing/reading is, above all, a transaction.
The reader gives you their time and attention and in return, you, as the writer, give them something that is worthy of such a valuable gift.
Valuable insight, advice on issues and challenges that they care most about. Put your own agenda aside and put them at the heart of what you’re writing. Aim for an independent tone of voice. Support it with data. Just suppress the urge to talk about yourself.
More importantly you will also be able to see things both from the perspective of the writer and the reader whilst questioning whether your words are fun, challenging, interesting or down right boring.
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