Make messages memorable with concrete copy
Write “juicy hot dog,” and your readers may see a frankfurter nestled in a bun, slathered with mustard and onions. They may even taste it.
This “dual coding” — where your brain processes not only the words, but the sensual experience of the object the words describe — is one reason concrete copy is so powerful.
But does concrete copy — copy that shows instead of tells, that describes objects instead of ideas — help people remember messages better than abstract ones?
Researchers at the University of Western Ontario aimed to find out. So they read study participants a series of concrete and abstract adjectives and nouns, then combined them into concrete and abstract phrases:
Rivet readers with juicy details
Fun facts and juicy details might seem like the Cheez Doodles and Cronuts of communication: tempting, for sure, but a little childish and not particularly good for you.
Not so. Concrete details are more like salad dressing and aioli — the secret sauces it takes to get the nutritious stuff down.
Call it “The Vividness Effect.” It’s been proven in the lab again and again: Colorful details communicate better than dry, abstract information.
At Master the Art of the Storyteller — our two-day creative-writing master class on Sept. 25-26 in New York — you’ll learn how to rivet readers with juicy details.
Specifically, you’ll learn how to:
- Show and tell: Help readers understand your big ideas by way of your specific details.
- Play it SAFE: Six ways to add color to your message.
- Write like a roller coaster: Are you losing them in the middle? Test your message so you can spot and fix the boring parts.
- Write to be read: Where to sprinkle “gold coins” throughout your message to keep readers engaged.
- Go from blah to brilliant in 15 minutes or less: Quick ways to add concrete detail to even the most tedious topics.
This is our final Master the Art of the Storyteller workshop for 2017. Don’t miss out. Register now.
Save $100 when you register by Aug. 25.
Learn to Master the Art of the Storyteller, Catch Your Readers, Get Clicked, Cut Through the Clutter and more
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