This post is going to be tackled in two sections.
Section one is focused on style, while the second section will help you build a persona off of that style.
I’m part of a mastermind group that is full of business owners and marketers, who are new to the craft of email marketing.
Aside from struggles with generating subject matter, finding a voice that hooks readers and connects with them is definitely one of their top issues.
In the first post, I made you a promise to reveal the inspiration for the writing style I’ve adopted and honed for not only my blog, but all the copywriting I do, and here it is: EyeHateGod.
EyeHateGod is a long-running underground sludge-metal band and their frontman, Michael D. Williams was the inspiration for my writing style.
See, part of my youth was spent growing up in a bland suburban town on the northern edge of Toronto.
To call it sterile and utterly devoid of culture is being charitable (It’s a great place to go to die, though).
I was an angry, young teenager desperate for the opposite of what this suburb had to offer, and when I discovered EyeHateGod, I was instantly hooked on the lyrics Williams wrote for his band.
Soon afterwards, Williams would go on to become a featured writer for Metal Maniacs, one of the most popular magazines devoted to this music genre.
His journalistic style proved every bit as captivating as his song lyrics.
While other writers for the magazine got my attention for about 60% of their pieces, Williams had me roped in from byline to sign-off.
It’s not that he had any kind of literary super-powers.
He merely channeled both his inner-dialogue and the exact way he explains things to his buddies while having a beer with them and projected them onto the page.
Far too many people over-estimate the big secret behind writing copy that flows.
However, when it comes to engagement, it really does just boil down to writing like every-day people talk in the company of friends.
Creating The Persona
Why should you create a persona?
There are many great reasons and none of them have anything to do with having something to hide.
Ever hear the name Eben Pagan?
Those who’ve made Eben a wealthy man know him as David D’Angelo, master at the art of seduction (Google ‘Double Your Dating’).
Given that a real estate agent’s name is his stock-in-trade, it’s understandable why Eben would take on a nom de plume once he started selling dating advice.
Avoiding market confusion or the dissolution of your personal brand is one great reason to take on a persona.
The other reason ties in to the way Williams wrote lyrics for EyeHateGod or articles for Metal Maniacs.
We speak differently in the office than we do when we’re hanging at a BBQ in the park.
Adopting a persona is your red pill.
This red pill is your permission to communicate exactly the way you see fit in order to engage…which will bring your closer to the bottom line (creating/maintaining) a customer and making sales.
If you don’t feel completely at ease using a pen name, no problem – plenty of people apply a persona to their real identities in order to strike a deeper chord with their audience / customer base:
Michael Dubin (Dollar Shave Club)
Truckloads of musicians…and on it goes…
All of us have different sides to our personalities. Your persona is merely an extension of the most exuberant, enthusiastic part of your personality.
How It All Gels Together
How did my writing style mesh with my persona?
Well, as I explained in Part I, my chicken (the EyeHateGod-inspired writing style)
came before the egg (my marketing career, which pulled me into the corporate world).
The persona on my blog helps me bust right out of formal mode because:
+ He’s younger than I am
+ He’s locked in perma-Peter Pan mode
+ He’s quite rude
+ Nothing in this life worries him
No matter who I am the rest of the day, when I get behind the keyboard to write to my blog’s core audience, my persona takes over until I hit the send button.
Recap: to develop your style, start paying closer attention to the way you speak to those who you’re most comfortable with. Create a persona you can count on to always bring that person out.
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