No matter your style of writing, doing this is sloppy.
What is "this?"
Writing in the same way and never switching it up.
An example of this is a newsletter by a woman I *was subscribed to.
She would open every damn email the same way:
Ugh. While that's a good writing technique, overusing it becomes a distraction to reading.
Rather than using that shortcut, tell me a story that forces me to imagine if…
The lesson isn't that using this technique is "bad." But to be more effective with your writing, you need granularity in your techniques.
It's akin to a pitcher in baseball.
If the pitcher only has a fastball and a changeup (a slow pitch), they won't be that good.
Note: some pitchers have put food on their table by specializing in those two pitches. But most can't afford the table if all they pitch is those two.
That's why a majority of pitchers use four or more pitches. The reason is that this keeps the batter on their heels.
They don't know if it's going to be a 99mph fastball or a 73mph curveball that looks like a wiffleball in the wind. Or, maybe they'll throw a screwball (whatever that is).
Regardless, this helps the pitcher have an advantage over the batter. They can go deep into their repertoire and pull out the type of pitch needed at that moment.
As a writer, it should be the same.
You can open your essay with a question, a story, or the "imagine if…" line. But when you repeatedly use the same one over and over again, it loses its efficacy.
So, how do you learn and gain new "pitches?"
Read, write, and repeat.
When you read other great writers, you see what "pitches" they use to engage you. You can learn how they execute these pitches and add them to your bag of tricks.
When your write and publish, you can experiment with and test your new "pitches" and see which land. This is your feedback loop on which pitches to develop further and which to drop.
And then you repeat the cycle for infinity.
That's why I preach reading and writing daily. It's the only way to improve as a writer and–as it's my core belief–as a marketer.
Great marketers are great writers and thinkers.
Do you need to add a few new pitches to your writing?
You know what to do.
Marketeer Insights ⚔️
- Using the same writing technique/opening/voice will wear your reader out
- Switch up your opening or voice–not too frequently–to engage your reader
- Read and write daily to improve your knowledge base and ability to execute your new pitches
For those who've never played baseball, I'm sorry this analogy goes over your head. As an avid shortstop until high school, I couldn't help but pull this lesson out of my memory bank.
If you have a better way to illustrate this point, hit that reply and let me know!
🧠 + ❤️ // JO