Stop We-We-ing on the reader

Talking about ourselves — better than sex?

It feels so good to talk about ourselves.

Stop We-We-ing on the reader

You above all Write to and about your readers, not about us and our stuff. Image by Jakob Owens

Talking about yourself activates the same pleasure centers in the brain as food, money or sex, according to Harvard neuroscientist Diana Tamir and her colleague Jason Mitchell, whose research on the topic was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

No wonder some 40% of everyday speech is devoted to telling others about our favorite subject.

For the study, Tamir and Mitchell used an MRI scanner to see which parts of the brain responded when people talked about themselves. When participants were sharing their own pizza preferences and personality traits, researchers saw heightened activity in regions of the brain associated with the rewards we get from food, money or sex.

Change the we-you ratio

Related stories

“It’s not ‘who, what, when, where, why and how,’ it’s ‘YOU, what, when, where, why and how.’”
— Anita Allen, communicator at Sabre Travel Solutions

Catch Your Readers in Kansas City

Learn to write copy that sells in this hands-on workshop

If you want to Catch Your Readers, you need to think like a reader. Then you need to use the bait your reader likes, not the bait you like.

Catch Your Readers in Kansas City

Fish it out Getting your readers’ attention can be a slippery task. Learn how to craft your messages to hook them. Image by Marius Masalar

Problem is, many of the techniques we’ve institutionalized in business communication writing are not the bait the reader likes. In fact, some of the standards in the corporate communicator’s repertoire are more likely to hinder than help your chances at getting the word out.

At Catch Your Readers — our two-day Writing That Sells master class on Nov. 16-17 in Kansas City — we’ll debunk destructive writing myths. You’ll leave with scientific, proven-in-the-lab approaches for getting people to pay attention to, understand, remember and act on your messages.

Specifically, you’ll learn how to:

  • Think Like a Reader: To move people to act, give them what they really want
  • Hook ’Em With a Savvy Structure: Master a structure that’s been proven in the lab to reach more readers
  • Cut Through the Clutter: Make every piece you write easier to read & understand
  • Lift Ideas Off the Page: Draw readers in and reach nonreaders with display copy
  • Get a writing workout with Wylie: Take your message from ‘meh’ to masterpiece when you practice your new skills on your own work

This is our final Catch Your Readers workshop for 2017. Don’t miss out. Register now.

Save $100 when you catch one of our early bird tickets.

“My mind was blown in the first hour.”
– Kelly Whitman, senior marketing specialist, Magna International

Polish your skills at these Master Classes

Learn to Master the Art of the Storyteller, Catch Your Readers, Get Clicked, Cut Through the Clutter and more

Register for Cut Through the Clutter - Ann Wylie’s concise-writing workshop in San Francisco on Aug, 17-18, 2017

San Francisco | Aug. 17-18

Register for Master the Art of the Storyteller in New York: Ann Wylie’s creative-writing workshop in New York on Sept. 25-26, 2017

New York | Sept. 25-26

Register for Catch Your Readers in Kansas City: Ann Wylie’s persuasive-writing workshop in Kansas City on Nov. 16-17, 2017

Kansas City | Nov. 16-17

Register for Write For The Web and Mobile: Ann Wylie’s online-writing workshop in Miami on Dec. 11-12, 2017

Miami | Dec. 11-12

Rather bring Ann in to train your whole team?

Catch Ann on the road

Save when you book a workshop while I’m in your neighborhood

Ask about piggybacking on my upcoming engagements in:

  • Johnson, RI: Aug. 7-11
  • Kansas City: Nov. 16-17
  • Memphis: Nov. 2
  • Miami: Dec. 11-12
  • Minneapolis: Oct. 3-4
  • New York: Sept. 25-26
  • Plano, TX: Oct. 19-20
  • Roseville, CA: Oct. 24
  • San Francisco: Aug. 17-18

Keep up with my calendar.

Please share this issue …

… with two of your colleagues by directing them to our current issue. Better yet, invite them to subscribe to Wylie’s Writing Tips. They’ll thank you — and so will I!