What’s the Big Deal about Persuasive Writing?

10 comments

So the other day, my 11 year old told me he was going to be learning about persuasive writing at school. I was definitely intrigued by that, since it’s a subject of interest to me. I told him to be sure to tell me about the things he would be learning.

Well a few days later, instead of telling me what he learned, he presented me with this letter…

Persuasive Letter from 11 Year Old

As you can probably see, it’s an essay detailing why he should be allowed to have a pet rat.

He included information about the positive characteristics of rats. He also illustrated how the domestic rat is nothing like its wild counterpart. He even explained how the pet dogs we already have are more likely to catch a disease than a pet rat. He closed his argument by saying he would pay for everything and take care of it himself.

And LOL…he then finished the letter with a P.S. that read “I will need two rats since they are so sociable.”

Very persuasive indeed and although the letter didn’t work in this case (I am not the rat buying parent target market), it could certainly persuade a parent who was interested in getting their child a pet.

But what does a letter by a grade sixer have to do with content marketing? A lot, actually. I know many content publishers get a bit panicky when they hear the words “persuasive writing” or “copywriting” or anything like that. But it needn’t worry you because persuasive communication is a natural thing and actually a big part of our daily lives.

If you’re passionate about a topic and believe in the product (or really want a pet rat), it comes naturally. You may not realize it, but you spend your whole day trying persuading people. Whether you’re telling a friend a movie or book is really good or you’re convincing your reluctant child to eat his vegetables, persuasion forms a large part of our day.

So the next time you feel writing persuasively in a blog post, a sales page or anywhere else is difficult…remember, you have plenty of practice in persuasiveness. All you have to do is believe in what you’re doing, get out there and tell people about it.

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About the Author

Alice Seba
Alice Seba is the owner and creator of Contentrix.com. With a focus on using content to create relationships, loyalty and results from writing, she loves helping online business owners get more bang out of their content.

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  • Haynes

    This is a great story to remind us to get back into the mindset of a child who wants something and how persuasive they can be — coming up responses to possible objections etc. and covering all the bases.

    • contentrix

      Thanks Haynes…I agree. When you’re passionate about something (and kids are often passionate), they can be very persuasive. I didn’t share the text messages with cute rat photos I got after these, but he laid it on thick.

  • http://www.facebook.com/malka.britt Britt Malka

    Darn, I wanted to ask your son to write my husband a mail about me getting allowed to buy a pet rat, but since it didn’t work, I’m not sure my husband would be convinced either. He doesn’t like rodents.

    Well done of your son, and what an admirable teacher to bring that topic into his teaching.

    • contentrix

      Hehehe. He had me considering…but the house rule before he wrote the letter was NO more pets. Our house is full of people and animals right now. In a few years, when he’s more responsible, maybe…so I think he’s laid the groundwork for that.

  • Mel

    If you’re at least considering it, then he did a good job. It typically takes more than one push to make the sale. LOL

    • contentrix

      Yes, the text messages that came after were his attempt at follow-up I think. Cute pictures of rats, more reasons why, etc.

  • dataplextech

    I vote the kid should be allowed to have a rat! Besides, this will be good practice for you. ;)

    • contentrix

      LOL…I’m confused. Good practice for what? I actually had a rat when I was 16. I told him we’d revisit his proposal in a few years. :-)

  • mel_onsager

    I am glad that they are teaching this in schools today. I can’t remember having any lessons on persuasive writing when I went to school(back in the dark ages before the internet).
    And as any good e-mail marketer will tell you, you must get your message in front of your audience a number of times before you can make a sale. So to your son, don’t give up keep trying.(LOL)
    See ya,
    Mel

    • contentrix

      Yeah, I don’t think I learned it either. A good skill to have in all things you do in life.

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