Time to stage an intervention

A couple of weeks ago, I bought a picture frame from Habitat (don’t worry; this blog gets more interesting). At just the wrong moment for them, they’ve asked me to review their service on ‘independent review community’ site Trustpilot. And in the middle of my grumpiness about the seemingly endless and impossible task of getting a picture frame from one part of London to another (sorry, I know I promised), I got a nice surprise.

When you go to post a review on Trustpilot, you get some writing advice.

It kicks off with ‘Your opinion in one sentence’. ‘Write a catchy header to make your review stand out’, it adds.

And then, when we get to the main bit, it tells you to ‘write as if you’re speaking to a friend’.

Really simple, and really effective. And most importantly, it nudges you in the right direction at just the right moment. At The Writer, we’re always moaning about the fact that even brands who’ve bothered to decide how they sound too often hide that advice in guidelines documents that no-one ever looks at.

Better to stage an intervention: surprise people with useful ‘tone of voice’ direction in the PowerPoint template everyone has to use, or on the timesheet everyone has to fill in. It’s much more likely to hit home at the point when you actually have to use it.

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