WXO Think Piece Guide

4 minute read
Share on linkedin
Share on twitter
Share on facebook
Share on email
SHARE
  • For the WXO to be an ‘experience campfire’, we welcome contributions from the leading lights of the Experience Economy
  • We believe that when leading lights from different experience sectors share their problems, challenges, hopes, gripes, fears, frustrations… between us, we’ll come up with strange, surprising and just plain better ideas and solutions.

There are 4 rules for a opinion piece:

1st Rule: Be Obvious

In improv, they talk about ‘your obvious’ and how what seems obvious to you isn’t to other people.

At the same time, if you put your hand up in class and ask a question, you’ll be amazed at how many other people are wondering about that too.

What I’m trying to say is: there’s really no need to try too hard.

That thing that’s been bugging you, that thing you’ve wanted to say… you’re the only person who’s you.

The rest of us would love to hear your point of view. (By the way, I’ve talked with every single one of the WXO’s Founding Circle, and that’s one of the main reasons why they want to be part of this.)

2nd Rule: Be Provocative!

Having said, be obvious, also don’t edit yourself… Don’t hold back!

We believe the WXO will be truly useful if we create a ‘campfire’ where experience economy pioneers like you can share ‘war stories’ and points of view with other pioneers. And you can hear theirs too. 

So, as per our mission – to connect and provoke the pioneers of the experience economy – we’re especially interested in points of view that are provocative: that readers are likely to find themselves nodding along, or shaking their heads in disbelief.

At the end, the reader may or may not agree with what they’ve read, but it should inspire them to think about what they really think, and spark ideas on how they can design and deliver better experiences.

Borrowing from Malcolm Gladwell here, at the beginning of What The Dog Saw:

‘Good writing does not succeed or fail on the strength of its ability to persuade… It succeeds or fails on the strength of its ability to engage you, to give you a glimpse into someone else’s head – even if in the end you conclude that someone else’s head is not a place you’d really like to be.’
Malcolm Gladwell, What The Dog Saw And Other Adventures
Tweet

There’s no expectation that you’ll write as well as Gladwell. And there’s no pressure to be wildy controversial. The key point is that you know things – a sector, an experience, a challenge – that others don’t know. And we’d like to hear what you think, what you’ve learned, and, perhaps how you think the Experience Economy is changing, or needs to change.

3. Ladder Up!

Whenever possible, all insights / points of view should not only have a strong point of view, but also be ‘laddered up’. In other words, possible for the reader to see how this is not only relevant for the specific experience economy sector the writer works in, or is writing about, but also useful for other experience sectors, including the sector they operate in.

For example, a story about designing the endings of a tech-based UX will have insights about how the designer of a hospital experience or immersive theatre show could design the end of the experience they create.

4. It Doesn’t Matter If It’s Half-Baked or Fully Formed

Anything you share in a Views post could be anywhere along the spectrum from a half-baked, off-the-cuff, ever-so-slightly mad idea to a honed, researched, evidence-backed, fully formed thesis. We think that’ll make this a much richer, more enjoyable, and provocative experience.

It could be the sort of thing that’s at the back of your mind, that’s been nagging you in the night that you’ve never shared, or only shared in conversations at conferences (remember those??)… or it could be a firmly held evidence-backed framework that you’re known for, or would like to be better known for.

A Few Tech Specs

Word count 

  • Shorter is often sweeter, but we have deliberately not set a word count.
  • If you can be done in 250 words, great.
  • Or if it takes 2,500 words to get your point across, again go for it.

Style

  • Write as you’d speak. We can edit. 
  • But do think about the person reading this. Like you, they’re busy, and they come to the WXO for insights and inspiration that’ll help them be better at their job. If what you tell them makes them think differently – about the Experience Economy, or about how they can and should design and stage experiences – that’s exactly what we’re looking for.

Images

  • Each story will require at least ONE cover image that’s widescreen (16:9). 
  • If you have one, great. 
  • If you don’t, we’ll solve that.
  • You can also include more images & video too. In fact, we prefer to break up the words with images and even video.

Take-outs

  • At the top of each story, we run 1-5 bullet points. This is so the reader can know as quickly as possible what this is about, and therefore whether it’s worth their time to read it.

Titles

  • If you want to write a title you can. 

Excerpts

  • Again, if you want to write, thank you. If not, we can do. 
  • Excerpts are the summaries that will display on the Home Page & Resources page.
  • These should be around 30 words. 

Time holding you back?

  • If you’ve got something to say, but never find the time to write it, let me know. I can get a writer to interview you and ghost-write your idea.  

Share on linkedin
Share on twitter
Share on facebook
Share on email
SHARE THIS ARTICLE