Empathy: The Forgotten Element in Successful Content Creation

BY DEBORAH S. BOSLEY, OWNER AND PRINCIPAL, THE PLAIN LANGUAGE GROUP — October 27, 2015

As published on THE CONTENT WRANGLER

“People who lean on logic and philosophy and rational exposition end by starving the best part of the mind.”

This quote by William Butler Yeats, one of Ireland’s most famous writers, illustrates a problem we have in the content creation community. We create a multitude of written material, but we rely primarily on logical structures, building authority, plain language style, and information design principles, but we pay little attention to how readers respond emotionally to what they read.

We know our customers, when faced with complex text or unable to find what they’re looking for, respond with anger, frustration, fear, etc. According to a 2013 survey, 68% of US consumers experienced “customer rage.” But what can we do about that?

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