The purpose of persuasive writing?

Persuasive writing is fundamental to academic writing. As persuasive writing is used to put your arguments across to your reader in an engaging and compelling form, and thus convince them to agree with your line of thought. Moreover, persuasive writing may even be used to encourage the reader to do something or to take a positive action.

Knowing your audience

Your first consideration should be, do you know your audience. If you have a better idea of who your writing is aimed at and what it is you want to persuade them of, you are more likely to succeed. As if there is little chance in persuading your reader(s) to your specific view point, then it may be wise to pick a different topic if possible. Also be sure to write in a positive manner about what you are trying to persuade the reader of.

Researching your subject area

Secondly, ensure that you have carried out extensive research into the subject area that you are writing about, as being well informed will help you to write with ease. There is nothing more likely to make your writing unpersuasive than not knowing your topic in depth. Correct and relevant facts, figures, diagrams, pictures, can all help to put forward a persuasive argument. Let your reader know why they should listen to your ideas, whilst using the correct tone of voice. You also need to maintain this same, neutral tone of voice throughout your writing. No reader wants to feel like they are being ‘told’ how they should think and behave.

Using repetition

The third thing to think about when writing persuasively is that, unlike with normal writing, it is okay to be repetitive, as this reinforces the positives of the point you are trying to make.

Addressing objections

Fourthly, if you address objections to the point you are trying to persuade your reader of head on, they will be able to see that you have considered other points of view and looked at all sides of an argument before trying to persuade them of something.

Remaining consistent

The fifth thing to think about is that you must remain consistent in what you are saying and how you are saying it. This will enable the reader to build their trust in you, which increases the likelihood of your writing persuading them. Ensure that each paragraph within the main body follows the same pattern of writing. One example that could be used is PEEL – point, evidence, evaluate, link.

Start each paragraph by stating a point, and then back this up with evidence. Evaluating can be hard, but ensure that you assess what the point you have made means and refer to any counter evidence. This is where you can show your reader that you have looked at other points of view and present the reasons for why you have chosen to disagree with them. End the paragraph with a link to what will be discussed next. This will help with the structure and flow of your writing.

Make your writing personal

Lastly, it is important to make the writing personal, reaching out to the reader about their views on a topic. Making your writing more directed to the reader themselves will help you to be ultimately more persuasive.