By Brian Muchiri
As a budding writer/content creator, I seek to entertain my readers and take their minds off the stress that they may be going through in their lives. I desire to provoke critical thinking and introduce them to deeper, more meaningful conversations. Above all things, I want to add some kind of value to their lives.
We are a fortunate people because we get to live in the age of accessible information and endless possibilities. We now have voices that can be heard by hundreds of people without having to shout. Our voice lies within the content we put out.
Social media is a platform that supersedes all others in the way it bridges gaps and connects communities. It is amongst the greatest inventions of our times and when used in the right way, can be a powerful, formidable tool for change.
As a young man, I am inspired by the fellow youth that are relentless and steadfast about their stands on social issues. The youth are the future and the future is now. Important conversations about unemployment, governance and healthcare must take centre stage because every morning we wake up to cases of looting and corruption that greatly undermine our progression as a country.
In order to spark a conversation that will hopefully effect change, we as writers have a responsibility to be intentional about the content we create. Each article/vlog/clip we publish has to possess certain integral qualities in order to appeal to our audiences.
In the course of my three day training which was facilitated by BAKE, I got the opportunity to get an in depth perspective on the effective tools of communication and persuasion. Whereas the term ‘persuasion’ might seem out of context when referring to content creation, it is imperative to any writer for their pieces of work to be presented in a way that is meaningful and significant to their readers. The goal for any blogger/writer is to positively impact their readers lives, hopefully for a long time.
Ethos, Pathos and Logos are modes of persuasion used to convince audiences. They are also referred to as the three artistic proofs.
Ethos is the Greek word for ‘character’. As a persuasion tool, Ethos seeks to appeal to the audience about the writer’s credibility. Readers and consumers of your content will only develop a sense of loyalty towards your craft if they trust you. For there to be trust, there must be a lot of emphasis on being honest and unbiased. Your tone should also be one that resonates with your readers. Knowing your audience, you should adjust your vocabulary and choice of words in a way that makes sense to the majority.
Also referred to as the ‘ Emotional appeal’, Pathos means to persuade an audience by appealing to their emotions. As a writer, you use specific words and tone in an attempt to create empathy so that your readers can feel what you are feeling and evoke a specific emotion. It could be sympathy, anger or happiness. The goal of Pathos is to prompt a particular action through emotion. Writers who write about personal stories and journeys to self improvement often implement Pathos in their work.
This refers to the use of logic and voice of reason to appeal to the audience. Logos is the Greek word for ‘word’. While using this tool, it is imperative the writer be as factually correct as possible. To use logos would be to cite facts and statistics, historical and literal analogies, and citing certain authorities on a subject. This type of persuasion is found to be ineffective should the writer fail to present comprehensive evidence to support his/her content.
How about you? How would you spark a conversation that would effect change in your community?