It takes a great opener to fan the flicker of a reader’s interest into a flame, so, in blogging for business, I teach, opening lines are key. In fact, openers are key in all kinds of writing, as quickstudy.com’s “Writing Tips & Tricks” points out. Their thesis statement, Quick Study explains to students, will set the tone for their entire essay.
Of course, there’s more than one way to skin that thesis statement cat, meaning that the same information can be presented to blog readers in a variety of ways. Quick Study offers students a great example of an assignment to write a persuasive essay offering the prompt “If you could travel to any city in the United States, where would you visit and why?”
Sample thesis statement #1: “If I could travel to any city in the U.S., I would visit New York City.”
Sample thesis statement #2: “Some people dream of visiting Chicago, others would choose Los Angeles, but for me, no city would be better to visit than New York City.”
Let’s examine both statements from a blog content writer’s point of view.
From a pure inbound marketing, keyword-phrase standpoint, the first statement might attract a consumer who’d typed “visiting Chicago” into the search bar. Since the point of the essay was to tout the benefits of New York City, starting the piece by saying “I’d choose to visit New York City over any other city in the United States” might be a more “SEO-pure” approach.
The reason I prefer the second version has little to do with SEO. It’s about what fellow blogger Mark McDonald calls “marketing the differences, not the similarities.” Acknowledging that readers have many choices is a good approach to take in a business blog. Our job, though, is to help those readers (and that includes B&B prospects) make sense out of the ocean of available information, clarifying why we have (or why our business owner or professional practitioner client has) chosen to do business or to create a product in a particular way.
There are many other ways to write what, in corporate blogging training, I call the “pow opening line” (what Quick Study calls the thesis) to set the tone of a blog post. Isn’t it great to have choices?