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9 Tips to Write Well
 

9 Tips to Write Well

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Can we talk about writing for a second? Sure, let’s do. ...

Can we talk about writing for a second? Sure, let’s do.

Writing is easy. Writing well is really hard, because if you are any good at it, people have likely been telling you that you are good at it for far too long for you to think you are anything but a tiny little Hemmingway with a better handle on your drinking problem. But….here’s the thing:

You are not. I am not (yes I am!) No, I’m not.

Writing, especially business writing. ESPECIALLY B2B technical marketing writing is so bad you guys. But that doesn’t mean I want us all to give up and go home. NO! I want us to focus on making all the content we’re so busy creating BETTER.

So I will tell you all the things I tell the writers here (and have had drilled into me in newsrooms, investment firms, mean blog comments, magazine editors and one time when I auditioned for American Idol).

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  • My name is Mrs Simena Philip I was born in Kuwait. I am married to Mr. Joshua Philip who worked with Kuwait embassy in TOGO for nine years before he died in the year 2013 We were married for eleven years without a child When my late husband was alive he deposited the sum of $4 Million in a Bank here in TOGO And Recently, My Doctor told me that I would not last for the next six months due to my cancer problem (cancer and stroke).Presently this money is still in the Bank. Having known my condition I am in need of a Hearted Individual that i will utilize this fund the way I am going to instruct he or her I want somebody that will use this fund according to the desire of my late husband to help the poor people, orphanages widows I took this decision because I dont have any child that will inherit this fund. As soon as I receive your reply I shall give you the contact of the Bank in TOGO I will also issue you an authorisation letter that will prove you the present beneficiary of this fund. You can contact me with this Altternative Email ( simenaphilip@hotmail.com)

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  • Can we talk about writing for a second? Sure, let’s do.Writing is easy. Writing well is really hard, because if you are any good at it, people have likely been telling you that you are good at it for far too long for you to think you are anything but a tiny little Hemmingway with a better handle on your drinking problem. But….here’s the thing:You are not. I am not (yes I am!) No, I’m not.Writing, especially business writing. ESPECIALLY B2B technical marketing writing is so bad you guys. But that doesn’t mean I want us all to give up and go home. NO! I want us to focus on making all the content we’re so busy creating BETTER.So I will tell you all the things I tell the writers here (and have had drilled into me in newsrooms, investment firms, mean blog comments, magazine editors and one time when I auditioned for American Idol).
  • Joyce Carol Oates crafts things. John Irving creates characters. You (read: I) write about software and technology, products and work. But hey, that doesn’t mean your work should be lifeless. Your writing, IS important and it WILL be read by someone besides SEO robots or octupi or whatever they are using to “crawl” the web these days. So while you may not be writing the next American novel, you can put your best creative juices into seeing your audience or yes, writing to that one person.
  • I remember when Kris Dunn first called me up to write for Fistful of Talent. He thought it was hilarious that I compared onboarding to waterboarding (which is not at all funny now…or then) but it was because I didn’t know. The reason I didn’t know was because I was afloat in a sea of holier than thou blog posts that never once took the time to define what the devil that word meant. Not cool you guys.
  • See what I did there? Don’t do that. Typing the same thing, worded slightly differently might get past your college newspaper editor but it won’t get past me. No, not even “at the end of the day.” If you can say it in ten words, do not use twenty.
  • They may be linkbait and a cheap gimmick but they’re only useless if you don’t provide ANY original analysis. Sometimes people want to know what YOU think of something and get a bunch of stats in one post just like sometimes people want a cheap a$$ bowl of Lucky Charms (WANT!) Give them that.
  • Think about this. For so long, we’ve been watching Fox and CNN scroll seriously inane stuff across the bottom of our screens that “news” and “breaking” have lost their meaning. So you have a new VP? A rejiggered product? A fancy new website? Make me care about it or it’s not news. Actually, I don’t even really think funding is news (except to analysts), other than when I hear about it, I pick up the phone to ask what their marketing situation is.
  • This one is really hard to get people to learn, because one person’s “No Duh!” statement is another person’s “perfect tweet” and honestly, people come into this business at different times, so who am I to judge? But a statement like “Employee engagement is important to companies” should not exist. That is one step up from Hooked on Phonics worked for me, okay?
  • I have this weird belief that business writing is like the biggest ask ever. I know I wrote it so you will read it, and maybe, just maybe eventually, buy something. You know it too. So in order to get over that sort of awkwardness, I want to write you content that’s going to give you the best I can give. The best I can give is my expertise, my experience, my “how-to”, the next step, the surefire way. If you say things like “a comprehensive marketing strategy is the surest way to help your brand skyrocket…..blah blah…” well,what does that even mean MAN!?!?!It’s complete gibberish. “A complete marketing strategy may vary but should at least contain a timeline, a list of 5-20 KPIs, a breakdown of total budget and the accountability guidelines for each stakeholder or department. ” That tells someone who is not in marketing what in the heck to look for next! Do that instead! Always give your reader a reason to go ACT on what you told them.
  • This is sort of like the last one but harder because you have to do research and whatnot. “Leading companies are doing whatever to increase whatever to deal with the surfacing trends of whatnow?” Puh-lease stop this. What company, in what sector, is doing what specifically and why? Only when I have that information, as a reader, can I say, “Oh, this solution could potential work for me, because I am in aviation, and we have about 700 employees and I am ALSO based in the southeast.” Now you have again given them a gift with your writing instead of wasting their brain cells on the written equivalent of raisin pudding.
  • Most people (read: I) feel like they have to have all the answers before blogging. Read any blog to immediately shake yourself of this absurd notion. We barely know anything! None of us! And any of the stuff we knew before is sure to change soon. So, wonder! Ask questions with fuzzy answers or maybe make a statement that seems totally out there. You might be right!P.S. I’m just kidding. You are crafting something. So make it something you can be proud of!

9 Tips to Write Well 9 Tips to Write Well Presentation Transcript

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