The Art of Crafting an Opinion Piece

Communication PR

debatt innlegg

The power of an opinion piece (or OP) in shaping perspectives and influencing audiences can not be overstated. When done right, this is a valuable PR angle that can significantly impact public perception and conversation. An opinion piece, an opinion essay, or an opinion article, whatever you choose to call it, holds the power to shape narratives, change minds, and guide discussions on pivotal issues. This blog will cover the essential aspects of this matter.

Crafting an engaging OP is a meaningful way for businesses to generate and shape opinions, potentially swaying their target demographic towards a specific perspective. However, the journey from a blank page to an influential opinion piece can seem intimidating, especially when you’re unsure where to begin. It doesn’t have to be, though. With a bit of guidance, anyone can compose a compelling OP that persuades readers to adopt their viewpoint.

What is an opinion piece?

So, what exactly is an opinion piece? Let’s start by demystifying this term. An OP is a written composition articulating a specific viewpoint on a particular issue. It is, in its essence, a persuasive argument presented in written form. An OP is not just a statement of belief or a simple rant. It must be rooted in fact, backed by evidence, and presented with a clear line of logical reasoning.

Opinion pieces are essential in the educational sphere, where they are used in academic settings to nurture critical thinking and communication skills. By researching and writing an opinion essay, learners are allowed to examine and evaluate information from a range of sources, construct an argument, and present it in a compelling manner.

In public discourse, opinion pieces are potent vehicles to present distinct viewpoints on socially or politically relevant topics. An OP is not just a vessel for personal perspectives but a tool of influence and change, which is why it is vital for PR and communication professionals. By presenting well-reasoned arguments and solid evidence, an opinion article can mold public opinion, guiding people’s thoughts and attitudes about important issues. If you want to get a better understanding of today’s  PR landscape, have a look at Mynewsdesk’s latest PR report here.

Delving deeper: the research

Before your fingers start dancing on the keyboard to craft your opinion piece, research is vital between you and your persuasive masterpiece.

At its core, an opinion piece embodies your perspective on an issue. However, to transform it from a simple statement of belief into an influential piece of writing, you need to ground your opinions in facts and evidence. Research for an opinion piece isn’t about gathering as much information as possible about a topic. Instead, it’s about focusing on the relevant, quality facts that will form the bedrock of your argument. This begins by understanding what information will strengthen your perspective and knowing where to find it.

Start by determining what information you need. Do you need statistics to back up a claim? Or expert opinions to add weight to your argument? Your research requirements will depend on your topic and the stance you’re taking. List these needs down to keep your research focused and organized.

Reveal your sources

The next step is all about sources. Your OP will be judged, among other things, by the quality of the sources you cite. Therefore, make it a priority to use credible and reliable sources. Scholarly articles, peer-reviewed journals, reputable news outlets, and government reports are excellent places to start. Websites ending in .edu or .gov are often reliable, as are research institutions and professional organizations. Also, as you gather information, keep a meticulous record of your sources. Not only is this crucial for citation purposes, but it also helps maintain the integrity of your work. There’s nothing worse than making a great point but not remembering where the supporting evidence came from. Remember that not all information is created equal. Evaluate the information you gather for accuracy, objectivity, and relevance. Ask yourself, is the source reputable? Is the information current? Does it directly support my argument?

Last, but not least, remember to embrace a critical-thinking mindset. Researching isn’t just about collecting data but analyzing it. Be critical of the information you find and think deeply about how it fits into your argument. Does it strengthen your viewpoint, or does it raise more questions?

Writing your opinion piece

An opinion piece is more than just a collection of thoughts and arguments; it’s a carefully constructed narrative designed to draw readers in and guide them toward your viewpoint. Integral to this are the elements that structure your piece – the headlines, sub-headlines, and the content itself. Each serves a specific purpose and needs to be crafted with care and attention.



  • The Headline: Your First Impression

The headline is the first thing readers see. It needs to be enticing, thought-provoking and indicate what the piece is about. A compelling headline can be the difference between someone deciding to read your opinion piece or moving on to something else.

Your headline should be clear and concise, ideally at most ten words. It should encapsulate the central argument of your piece and pique the reader’s interest. Provocative questions, strong statements, and intriguing assertions make compelling headlines. Just ensure it isn’t misleading or sensationalized – remember, your headline sets the expectation for your piece.

  • Sub-Headlines: Guiding the Reader

Subheadlines break up the content and guide the reader through your argument. They are waypoints in your piece, indicating what each section will be about and helping the reader navigate the narrative.

Each sub-headline should be a mini-summary of the section it precedes, concisely conveying the main point that will be discussed. They should be enticing and informative, teasing the content without giving too much away. Moreover, using relevant keywords in your sub-headlines can improve SEO, helping your piece to reach a wider audience.

  • Content: The Heart of Your Argument

The content of your opinion piece is where your argument comes to life. It is the stage upon which your research, analysis, and insights perform orchestrated by your writing. Here are vital aspects to consider while crafting your content:

  • Introduction: The opening paragraph sets the tone for your piece. It should draw the reader in, introduce your topic, and present your thesis statement. This is where you first argue why the reader should care about your words.
  • Body: This is where you present your principal arguments, each ideally within its section with its sub-headline. Each point should be supported by evidence from your research. The body should be structured logically, with each point building upon the previous one, leading the reader toward your conclusion.
  • Counterarguments: Addressing counterarguments enhances the credibility of your piece by showing that you’ve considered all sides of the issue. Explain why your viewpoint still stands strong despite these opposing perspectives.
  • Conclusion: Your conclusion should wrap up your arguments and restate your thesis statement in light of the points you’ve made. It’s your chance to leave a lasting impression, providing a thought-provoking final remark or a call to action. Similar to when a lawyer makes their closing arguments to a jury in the movies.

Remember, clarity and conciseness are your allies. Avoid unnecessary jargon and complex sentence structures. Your aim is to be understood, not to confuse. Be persuasive, but also be respectful and fair in your arguments. The power of an opinion piece lies in its ability to change minds, but this is best achieved when the audience feels understood and respected.

In sum, the headline, sub-headlines, and content are the building blocks of your opinion piece. By carefully considering each, you can create a compelling, persuasive piece of writing that not only voices your opinion but also has the power to influence and inspire.

Identifying the Right Media and Journalists for Your Opinion Piece

Once your opinion piece is polished and ready for the world to read, the next crucial step is finding the most suitable media and journalists who will help it reach your intended audience. This might feel like navigating a complex maze, but with the right strategy, you can find your way and ensure your piece receives the attention it deserves. If you are curious about how to make journalists cover your specific story, read our blog post about it here.



The first step to finding the most suitable media and journalists is understanding your target audience – the group most likely to be interested in your opinion piece.

  • Who are they?
  • What media outlets do they trust and regularly consume?
  • What topics or issues do they care about?

These considerations will help you determine where your piece might resonate most.

Once you’ve identified your target audience, start researching media outlets that cater to this group. Look at their content.

  • Do they publish opinion pieces?
  • Do their articles align with the theme or subject matter of your work?

Note down the outlets that seem like a good fit. Also, consider the reach of these outlets. More prominent, national publications will have a broader audience, while smaller, local, or specialized outlets will have a more specific reader base. Choose a mix that suits your strategy.

Within these outlets, identify journalists who cover topics related to your piece. Look at their past work.

  • Do they report on issues similar to what you’ve discussed?
  • Do they seem open to different viewpoints?

You’re looking for journalists who might be interested in your opinion piece and have the influence to get it published.

Pitching your piece

Once you’ve identified potential journalists, it’s time to reach out to them. The first impression you make will be through your pitch email. It should include a clear subject line, a brief introduction of who you are, a concise summary of your opinion piece, and why you think it would interest their readers. Ensure your pitch is personalized to each journalist – nobody likes receiving a generic, mass-produced email.


Building relationships with journalists is another essential step. Attend events where journalists are present, follow them on social media, and engage with their work. Over time, they’ll start recognizing your name, increasing your chances of publishing your piece.

Platforms like Mynewsdesk can significantly simplify the process of finding relevant journalists and media outlets. Such tools often have built-in media databases to help you identify the right people in your field.

Don’t be disheartened if you don’t receive a response right away. Journalists often receive dozens of pitches a day. If you haven’t heard back within a week or so, sending a polite follow-up is perfectly acceptable.

Navigating the media maze may seem daunting, but with a clear understanding of your target audience, a solid research strategy, and effective networking, you can find the right media outlets and journalists for your opinion piece. Remember, the aim is to get published and ensure your work resonates with readers and sparks meaningful dialogue.



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