First, there's something you need to know. It's this: You are the most important thing.
You probably found that statement appealing. That's perfectly natural. But why did it appeal to you? Or perhaps you might ask who is the centre of the statement, 'You are the most important thing'
Before answering, maybe have a closer look at the two opening paragraphs. Do you see the words 'I' or 'me'? No. Until now those words haven't been used.
Originally blogs were the 'all about me' online journal. Now things have evolved. Blogs aren't just the public diaries of every Tom, Dick or Harriet who wants to tell the world they had an egg for breakfast. They are used for marketing and PR purposes. And when they are the focus needs to be firmly on the reader not on the blogger.
Hence the importance of using 'you' and speaking directly to the reader, about them. Don't talk about you. They're not interested.
The most impactful word you can use when writing in order to engage your reader is 'you'. It sounds self-centred but it's a fact of life that people look to fulfil their own needs. Readers are unlikely to be interested in you unless you first show you are interested in them. That means always focusing your blog on their needs and interests before considering your own.
That doesn't mean your readers won't ever be interested in you, they will, but only when you've established the 'I care about you – you care about me' dynamic. Only then will you begin to feel the benefits. And those benefits will include the viral effect. And that's just what you wanted.
So, how can you be sure you're getting the focus right with your blog?
You can use these simple little tips. They're guaranteed to help you create more engaging posts.
- Search your text and do a little head count on the word 'you'.
- Make maximum use of the word 'you'.
- Use 'I' and 'me' sparingly, better still don't use them at all.
How many times should the word 'you' feature?
This is one of those how long is a piece of rope questions that often crop up in business. There are no hard and fast rules but these guidelines should give you an idea:
- The word you features 34 times in the text above this sentence. That's 8.901% of the article body devoted to 'you'. That's quite high but the text doesn't feel stuffed with the word 'you'. That's because it's a word people like to hear.
Derivative word Percentage Total
you're 0.262% 1
your 1.571% 6
you've 0.262% 1
In total 10.996% of the text is devoted to the word you or its derivatives. If you were trying to achieve a keyword density like that with a word like handcuffs or driving the copy would read clumsily, but because 'you' is an appealing word and one that we all want to hear you can get away with using it more liberally.