This post is about ‘propulsive writing’, a term not very widely popular. Nonetheless, you will know in the coming paragraphs, it has high value in terms of creating a viral blog post.
Basically, propulsive writing is connected closely to the popular term ‘engagement’ in the world of blogging but it works a bit differently. Whereas the engagement resorts to excitement, emotions, ecstasy and suspense, propulsion in a blog post renders the reader willing to move ahead through the post.
The instrumental importance of such a will in reducing the bounce rate builds up the case for a full blown article on the subject. Let us try to know and learn about propulsive writing and its importance in writing a viral blog post in detail.
What is Propulsive Writing?
If you look up the word ‘propulsive’ in dictionary, you will find the word is an adjective and its meaning is “having the property of forcing ahead or pushing forward”.
Draw this little bit and imagine yourself as being in the mid of a story.
Say, you are at something like, “David pondered for some time and thought of an idea. He would visit his parents who dwelled in the countryside.”
Now, how would you have felt, had the above piece of text been like this?
Chuckling to himself David murmured, “My plan would take birth in the far flung blue hills of Maryland.” He, kind of jumped from the bed with the legs still folded and was screaming at the top of his voice, “Dad and mom…I’m coming.”
Perhaps, being a fickle minded reader, you would have jumped off to a different page or webpage in the first case. However, you would not have perhaps, done so for the second version of the almost similarly intended text.
Yes. You guessed that right. I call the second piece of writing as ‘propulsive writing’.
Now, let us try to define it formally.
Propulsive writing is one that drives a reader forward from one sentence or a small body of text – may be a paragraph – to the next one with a force that leaves the reader asking for more. The next unit, in turn, casts similar impact on the reader and pushes the reader further towards the next unit. In the process, the interest of the reader is never allowed to drop below a critical level.
Am I Coining the Term?
A rigorous search through the internet sparingly led me to spots that made a mention of the word ‘propulsive’ in connection with the word ‘writing’. Nonetheless, I bumped into some headings that did so. Such a title was ” Propulsive Energy: A Conversation With John McManus, Author Of Fox Tooth Heart“.
That apart, I had come across terms like
Audience engaging content
but not ‘propulsive writing’, barring only an occasion or two.
How to Use Propulsive Writing to Write a Viral Blog Post
What do we need for a blog post to go viral?
Great headlines? What do they do? Propel the reader to click.
What is the purpose of a well-composed introduction? Without any doubt, it serves to force the reader to read the next part, that is, main body of the article.
“If your introduction is weak, it’ll discourage the reader from reading further”, says Neil Patel, the famous blogger in his article , The Ultimate Guide to Writing Blog Post Introductions In effect, what is the introduction doing? Only, pushing the reader forward, towards the main content.
Again, the main part of the content has to create a path for the reader so she/ he can move ahead on this path. In turn, the next part should hand the relay stick to the end where the reader will be asked to do something on her/ his own. This part is known as CTA (Call to Action).
Can you guess why I was walking you through all of this? Because I wanted you to utter the word – PROPULSION.
Yes, a propulsive property is always required from your writing whether it be the title or introduction or the main body of the post or an example or the CTA. If you cannot make your reader walk, jump, gallop and skip then you are no writer. At least be ready for a bounce rate of 98% plus, if you know about that already.
So make it your religious duty today to practice propulsive writing. A stagnating reader will do no good to your blog post. You have to make him to locomote. Well, I just discovered another term: LOCOMOTIVE WRITING.
Do These 5 Things for Propulsive Writing:
Simple sentence(s): There is a village past the hills. People say many spots out there, are haunted.
Propulsive sentence: As you reach the end of the muddy passage past the hills you end up being in Raibosatu, the dark, deserted village, believed to be haunted by souls.
Note: It has been researched or imagined that the passage is muddy, the name of the village is Raibosatu and has been deserted
B. Brainstorm words, sentences, paragraphs
This is such a form of writing wherein you pay heed to every word that you use. Because every word and the collection of words, that is, a sentence are required to produce a forward push. A word acts as an accelerator. Look at this example:
Word improvement –
Simple: You will learn from me how to use your extra energy that will make you a champion in such games.
Propulsive: You will undergo a specialized training under me that enables you to exploit the extra energy hidden in a specific location of your brain. That will turn you into a champion.
Sentence improvement –
Simple: You want to learn?
Propulsive (Better): You want to learn fast?
Propulsive (Best): You want to learn everything within 3 hours? Come along.
Propulsive Paragraph example –
In my article I have promised to teach you how to earn $1000 per month. You have learnt till now the secret to earn only $500 and the article is almost three-fourths over. In the small part that still remains, you are going to learn how to earn the rest amount very fast.
C. Mention things like money, data etc.
As you use more and more of these things your readers keep getting fueled. The fuel keeps them surging ahead and the focus is always on.
D. Ask more questions
So, can you guess, who will win the duel?
When the reader is encountered by such a sentence, she makes a guess and jumps to the next unit for the result.
E. Connect it more to the reader, use emotion
Example- That day, she, 58 and superannuated, cried in the privacy of the night and her lonely, cold bedroom, for not being able to achieve anything worth in her entire life.
Would Loretta rise from her ashes?
F. Use negativity to your advantage
If your tale allows, write things like this:
He badly wanted to avoid medication. His workout duration went up from 30 minutes to about an hour but alas! The blood sugar level did not improve. Would Anderson see the doctor now?
“I think I must”, he said to himself.
Note: Common Engaging Techniques use foreshadowing, suspense, twist, “Show, don’t tell” and other similar things. They too use emotion but the :push effect” of propulsive writing is not necessarily present.
Let us take a rather dull paragraph and try to give it a locomotive effect.
Early rising is a good habit. If you wake up early and start your day well, it is said, your day will be very productive. The day’s tasks will be disposed of quickly and in the best possible way. Many hugely successful people have advised to schedule your most important and the toughest tasks for this hour because in the serene morning hours and after the brain has had a rest of about 6-7 hours, the body and the mind are best placed to act and think at their top efficiency.
This is a cool, nice paragraph written in a simple tone. Nonetheless, it is really cool, destitute of vigor, heat and most important of all, the locomotive effect.
So, our job is now cut and dried. We need to provide this cool paragraph, the necessary locomotion. Here we go:
If you really want to know why people hold early rising in such a high esteem that both fitness experts and academic champions shower equal praise on it, then read on.
As you move through the article, you will soon discover that what you knew about waking up early, was but a scrape of its huge chunk of benefits for body and mind.
The achievers prescribe preparing an early morning schedule wherein a person would allot the morning slots to the most nagging but significant tasks.
In those hours of infinite serenity, when the nature paints itself red by the rising sun, entertains by the chirping birds and fondles everything by the cool breeze, nothing looks difficult. A gush of wind from far away enters your window and bathes you with its freshness to make you descend deep into the valleys of your mind and you discover the real solutions.
Start Your Propulsive Writing Here: A Model Paragraph
Read this paragraph once and try to give it the propulsive effect:
Despite the fact that your blog post is in full conformity with SEO techniques it may not do well if the readers do not find your topic interesting and valuable. So before you put your fingers on the keyboard think for a while. Here takes birth the phrase ‘JUICY TOPIC’. This is the magic drink of every writer.
In the end, ask yourself, “Will my reader completely read this or will leave it half way?”