Good transitions signal good writing and good thinking. They help you organize your own ideas as a writer. And for the reader, they promote the feeling that your argument is sensible and even unassailable. Transitions are important tools for all writing — and for persuasive copy, they’re essential.Transitions can consist of single words, phrases, or sentences. They can be put to work within a sentence, to link sentences, and to connect paragraphs. Think of them in the following categories.
To continue or shift a line of thought, or indicate agreement or addition:
|on the other hand
|in other words
|as soon as
|at the moment
|first, second, third
|to begin with
|in other words
|for this reason
|in this case
|on the positive side
|it sounds good, but
|I’m sorry to say
|of particular interest
|at the same time
|in the hope that
Transitions give you a good way to begin paragraphs or sections, while putting that information in context of the full message. The following are examples of whole sentences that serve as transitions:
- Based on this data, we’ve made the following decisions.
- We’ve considered all the information and have reached some conclusions.
- We should pay special attention to the sales figures.
- A number of issues need to be addressed. Our priorities:
As with all writing principles, there can be too much of a good thing. When you give your writing the read-aloud test and it sounds stilted and clumsy, review your transitions — you may need to remove some. Do so and you still have a well-organized, convincing message.