Using persuasive language

Home learning focus

To understand the importance of language when writing to persuade.

This lesson includes:

  • two videos to help you understand the importance of language when writing to persuade

  • three activities

Learn

Watch this short clip to see first-hand the use of persuasive techniques in song-writing.

Jem, a singer-songwriter, discusses some of her own lyrics and explores the effect of persuasive writing techniques

When writing to persuade, the goal is to put forward your clear opinion on a topic and to then encourage others to come round to that opinion.

A good medium for persuasion is advertising and also giving speeches.

Adverts are designed to encourage you to buy or look in to the product or service being advertised. They therefore, need to use persuasive techniques well.

You can find examples of persuasive language in the speeches of Martin Luther King, Winston Churchill and Greta Thunberg. In their speeches they use persuasive language to push their point across to their intended audience and gain an emotional reaction from them.

Watch the following clip to learn how to persuade using various persuasive techniques.

Learn how to persuade a reader using a variety of techniques

Remember

Persuasive writing should present a viewpoint in a confident and convincing way. It should be:

  • passionate and personal

  • focused on one side of the argument

Practise

Activity 1

Check your understanding. Complete the short quiz, focusing on how to be persuasive.

Activity 2

You've been presented with four broken items and must persuade your audience to buy them.

  • A broken cup - with no handle!

  • A broken phone - it's old and has snapped in half!

  • Some wellington boots - with holes in the toes!

  • A toy car - with the wheels missing!

Looking at the four items you have been given, write a short speeches of no more than 7 or 8 sentences, to persuade your audience to buy each of the items.

For each item that you sell, try to use a minimum of 3 of the persuasive techniques listed below.

  • P is for personal tone - use language that includes the reader and makes them feel involved.

  • E is for emotive language - use words that have a strong emotional impact on the reader.

  • R is for rhetorical questions - use questions to make the reader think about your viewpoint.

  • S is for say again- repeat key points to reinforce your most important ideas.

  • U is for undermine opposing arguments - show that you recognise an opposing viewpoint and then undermine that argument.

  • A is for anecdotes - use a short, interesting story from real life.

  • D is for direct address - use personal pronouns, like ‘you’ and ‘your’, to involve your reader.

  • E is for exaggeration - use exaggeration to make your point stronger.

Top tip Be as creative as possible, the items are a challenge to sell and so you need to work on cleverly using the persuasive techniques.

Example:

This poor defenceless toy needs a home. Lost, forgotten and cast-aside, he sits waiting for someone to take him and care for him. Do you want to see this toy left behind again?

Activity 3

If you want to take this further use the page linked below to create revision flashcards for top tips for being persuasive.

Writing to persuade, argue and advise

You can use all the knowledge you have covered today, to make a set of 10 or more flashcards.

On your flashcards, you could:

  • write a topic, idea or keyword

  • give examples

  • explain techniques

  • draw images to support your revision

These flashcards should contain reduced amounts of knowledge to make them helpful for future revision.

Where next?

In this lesson you have learnt about techniques and tips to help you to write persuasively.

There are other useful articles on Bitesize to help you make your writing interesting and engaging.

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