active language social media

When to Use Active Language on Social Media

Melanie Green
October 29, 2018

In active voice, the subject performs the action of the verb. “We gave our customers gifts” is an active sentence, whereas “Our customers were given gifts by our company” is passive. In general, active language is more engaging for readers and more “correct.”

Here are some ways that you can use active language on your business’s social media accounts to create more interesting and better-written content.

Calls to Action

One of the most important places that you can use active language is in your calls to action.  Calls to action let people know what you want them to do. Whether you want readers to buy your product, visit your service page, or contact you, a clear, concise, and active call-to-action can be the most effective way to achieve your goal. Indicate how you want someone to take the action, without sacrificing clarity by writing it in a passive voice. It can be tempting to use passive language in an attempt to be less aggressive in your sales approach. However, active calls to action tend to work better.

For instance, “Click here to save $20” is much more direct and impactful than the passive phrase “Customers who clicked here have saved $20.” The active sentence conveys immediate action. Often, the best calls to action are the most direct.

Customer Stories

Customer stories and testimonials are another area where active language can make a real difference. For instance, “Shelley saved $20 and enjoyed more time with her kids” is more convincing than “At the end of the month, the product had saved $20 for Shelley and has helped her save time.” If you’re asking for customer testimonials, you will have less control over how customers write the testimonials. However, with case studies, you can definitely craft well-written content that best conveys how your products and services can help customers.

Infographics

It is easy to overlook the written copy that you use in infographics. It is part of an image, after all. Despite the focus on visual information, the written copy you use in an infographic is extremely important. You have limited space in an infographic and you don’t want long descriptions that take away from the image. Using active language in infographics can help you shorten and improve your written components.

Whenever Possible

In general, active language is better than passive language. So when it comes to writing online on social media or in paper marketing materials, aim to use active language whenever possible. If there is a way to rewrite a passive sentence into an active one, it is usually better to use the active voice.

Using active language on your social media accounts is a great way to improve the quality of your overall writing. Even if you only work toward improving this one thing, you can make a significant improvement in the professionalism and engagement of your writing. Most sentences can be rewritten to be in active voice.

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