Back in the day, even before Star-Wars, creative direct mail writing was a very strong skill-set many people honed. This quote for example, “Good grammar is not merely grammar which is free from unconventionalities, or even from the immoralities. It is the triumph of the communication process, the use of words which create in the readers mind the thing as the writer conceived it; it is a creative act…” - Janet Aiken.
As the world becomes smaller, it is sometimes difficult to know exactly what the other person is writing about. As noted in the quote above, writers need to use words which create in the readers mind as the writer conceived it to be.
Communication occurs on receivers end
To wit, communication does not take place on the sending side, writing or speaking. Communication occurs almost exclusively on the reading and listening side. A writer can write or speak all she wants in the clearest language she knows. But no matter how clear it is to her, she did not complete the communication process if it sounds like a foreign language to the reader. She is not communicating.
Sometimes, the people who read your writing know more than you do about what you are selling. Other people who read the copy may have only an elementary understanding of the product. As the writer, you may never know the level of the reader’s expertise. Incorporate basic summaries and overviews in your writing that anyone can understand.
As a writer your goal is always clarity. Avoid long sentences, big words unless your readers expect them, and simplistic jargon. It is always wise to avoid an insult.
Headlines are important
Some writers can get hung-up on the headlines and sub-heads. Try this idea. Once the copy is close to completion, easy-to-follow headlines become easier to write. Recap your text in short and frequent summary blocks which are easier on the eye. Somehow these headlines appear right before your eyes!
Make sure your readers understand your offer, know what they are buying, and are not intimidated by the copy. Unless your readers understand your entire message, the tedious hours of selecting just the right words and making sure you are concisely communicating can go to waste.
Since the world is getting smaller it is a good idea to know where the message is going. Even in the US, different regions can use different words or how the words are grouped. Speakers may regularly say; “It’s me/him/them/
Keep the receiver in mind at all times. After all, that’s who you are trying to impress.
MVS Mailers, Inc.
31 Crossways East
Bohemia, NY 11716