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Are You A Web Content Writer That Never Surrenders?


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It was his fourth speech as Prime Minister. His accession to the position had been controversial, and in fact was by default. He was viewed with hostility in both the principal political parties.

It opened with a factual account of the French collapse, the evacuation at Dunkirk, and preparations for home defense. But he then said his government was determined to "ride out the storm of war, and to outlive the menace of tyranny, if necessary for years, if necessary alone."

This single sentence hushed the entire House of Commons. He went on: ´Even though large tracts of Europe and many old and famous States have fallen or may fall i
nto the grip of the Gestapo and all the odious apparatus of Nazi rule, we shall not flag or fail. We shall go on to the end, we shall fight in France, we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields, and in the streets; we shall never surrender! and even if, which I do not for a moment believe, this island or a large part of it were subjugated and starving, then our Empire beyond the seas, armed and guarded by the British Fleet, would carry on the struggle, until, in God's good time, the new world, with all its power and might, steps forth to the rescue and the liberation of the old.´

His immediate audience was stunned, and then erupted into a prolonged standing ovation.

Do you see the power that those words held? How those words were woven into colorful language to portray a message of utter defiance? Churchill not only was a brilliant orator, indeed how many times have these phrases? "Blood, toil, tears and sweat"... we will fight on the beaches" ... "this was their finest hour" ... "never was so much owed by so many to so few." But he was also a brilliant writer, unlike many of his predecessors he wrote most of his own material and never hired speech writers.

Think about it. A man and a nation facing the greatest threat in arms the human race had ever seen. I am only trying to persuade you to think more about how you write your websites, here was a man trying to persuade a nation to fight the most powerful army in the world! Not easy, yet with a pen and a few sheets of A4 Churchill gave it a very good go!

Sir Winston Churchill managed, merely with words, to grip, hold and inspire his audience, summoning up a latent patriotism and stirring the pride of an entire nation when they needed it most while also actively speaking to the enemy, striking home a very powerful message.

How did he do it? Because he spoke to the correct audience at the right time and solved their problems. He inspired where inspiration was needed most, he stirred pride when it had been dented, he turned faced Hitler and said "Come on then!" when the nation needed to hear it!

As Vita Sackville-West (famous author & poet) famously wrote wrote to Nicolson (journalist and her husband) of the June 4th speech on the radio, "Even repeated by the annou ncer it sent shivers (not of fear) down my spine."

This is why I suggest that more time than anything else should be dedicated to writing engaging text that will grip your desired audience, when writing for a website. It never ceases to amaze me how people look at the writing of web copy as the final part of the solution and treat it with the least importance. We wrote everything for this website before we did any graphic design, programming, usability studies or anything else for that matter and we took plenty of time thinking about our objectives and how our text should portray what we wanted to say.

If your website can strike a chord with, grip or call someone to act in the way that you want them to then your words are doing their job. You will have then managed to engage your reader into converting to your goal. Content is King when you are trying to convert a visitor to your website goal.

Have you spent enough time on the power of your words? Most importantly are you speaking the correct audience and solving their problems?
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Steve JacksonAuthor: Steve Jackson, Editor - Conversion Chronicles

Steve Jackson is the Editor of the Conversion Chronicles, a website conversion rate marketing newsletter dedicated to improving website conversion rates. In 2003 he co-founded Aboavista the first web analytics consultancy in Finland and now a wholly owned subsidiary of Satama Interactive. Satama Analytics unit is a web conversion and web analytics consultancy based in Finland with offices across northern europe. You can get a free copy of his e-book sent to you upon subscription to the Conversion Chronicles web site.