NO BORING CONTENT
    ALLOWED!
          WRITING COMPELLING TEXT FOR
  COVER LETTERS, RESUMES+ PORTFOLIOS
                ...
http://www.flickr.com/photos/headlouse/1484615917/sizes/m/in/photostream/




YOU’RE KICK-ASS
CONVEY TO READERS THAT




  ...
Client: ACME is the world’s
largest manufacturer of
ineffectual weapons for
coyotes. I made wireframes,
created a new desig...
GRAPHIC DESIGN
             XHTML
      WORDPRESS
  BROWSER-COMPATIBLE
            AJAX
         FRONT-END DEVELOPMENT
   ...
TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN,
               I AM SUBMITTING MY...
  AS ADVERTISED ON...
     ...OVER 5 YEARS EXPERIENCE
   I HA...
TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN,
               I AM SUBMITTING MY...
  AS ADVERTISED ON...
     ...OVER 5 YEARS EXPERIENCE
   I HA...
3 ELEMENTS OF COMPELLING CONTENT




Focus
Credibility
Consistency                        7
MAKE NO MISTAKE...




This
is
Hard                 8
FOCUS
IN WHICH AREAS CAN




        BE DEMONSTRATED ?




                            9
3 CHARACTERISTICS OF FOCUS




Audience
Medium
Network                      10
Copyright © Lemuhr http://acidcow.com/pics/4553-dead-flies-art-15-pics.html




AUDIENCE                                   ...
Copyright © Lemuhr http://acidcow.com/pics/4553-dead-flies-art-15-pics.html




MEDIUM                                     ...
Copyright © Lemuhr http://acidcow.com/pics/4553-dead-flies-art-15-pics.html




NETWORK                                    ...
CREDIBILITY
IN WHICH WAYS CAN




                    BE CONVEYED?




                                   14
4 CHARACTERISTICS OF CREDIBILITY


Engagement
Results
Humility
Intent                             15
Copyright © Lemuhr http://acidcow.com/pics/4553-dead-flies-art-15-pics.html




ENGAGEMENT
DEMONSTRATE




                ...
“
DEMONSTRATE ENGAGEMENT


         Objective: To earn a project
         management position with a
         revered firm ...
DEMONSTRATE ENGAGEMENT


         Don’t be a cog.
         Explain how you enthusiastically
         made great things hap...
“
DEMONSTRATE ENGAGEMENT


         In 2008, I completed the
         design and development of a
         2nd generation,...
20
Copyright © Lemuhr http://acidcow.com/pics/4553-dead-flies-art-15-pics.html




RESULTS-ORIENTED
KEEP STATEMENTS




      ...
“
KEEPING STATEMENTS RESULTS-ORIENTED


          Participated in design
          discussions with clients

          Gen...
KEEPING STATEMENTS RESULTS-ORIENTED


          Don’t just list what you did.
          Explain how you did it
          d...
“
KEEPING STATEMENTS RESULTS-ORIENTED


          Weeks ahead of schedule, I
          coded and delivered Section
       ...
25
OliveCrush knew just how to
translate our text into a
beautiful, artistic product,
especially appealing to the age
group w...
Copyright © Lemuhr http://acidcow.com/pics/4553-dead-flies-art-15-pics.html




WITHOUT CONCEIT
BE CONFIDENT




          ...
“
BEING CONFIDENT WITHOUT CONCEIT


          I can help you with your sr. web
          interface graphic designer
      ...
BEING CONFIDENT WITHOUT CONCEIT


          Don’t rely fully on aesthetics.
          Complement portfolios by
          d...
“
BEING CONFIDENT WITHOUT CONCEIT


          I believe in clear and honest
          communication. You can count
       ...
KEEPING STATEMENTS




RESULTS-ORIENTED
                     31
I wanted to mimic the displays
of his many exhibitions - no
distractions and minimal info. All
forms of navigation remain
...
Copyright © Lemuhr http://acidcow.com/pics/4553-dead-flies-art-15-pics.html




WITH INTENTION
WRITE CONTENT




          ...
“
WRITING CONTENT WITH INTENTION


          The webiste has greatly
          improved their web marketing
          and ...
WRITING CONTENT WITH INTENTION


          Don’t be careless.
          Take the time to ensure your
          writing sin...
“
WRITING CONTENT WITH INTENTION


          I have helped strengthen the
          PBS Parents brand through my
         ...
37
CONSISTENCY
IN WHICH AREAS CAN




                     BEST BE ACHIEVED ?




                                          38
3 CHARACTERISTICS OF CONSISTENCY




Structure
Voice
Style                              39
Copyright © Lemuhr http://acidcow.com/pics/4553-dead-flies-art-15-pics.html




STRUCTURE                                  ...
+ Promote experience over education

  + Include only what’s most relevant

  + Scatter keywords throughout




STRUCTURE ...
Copyright © Lemuhr http://acidcow.com/pics/4553-dead-flies-art-15-pics.html




VOICE                                      ...
+ Write in a genuine tone

  + Avoid bloated technical statements

  + Rewrite anything that sounds
    ridiculous when re...
Copyright © Lemuhr http://acidcow.com/pics/4553-dead-flies-art-15-pics.html




STYLE                                      ...
+ To end (or not to end) bulleted
     lists with periods

  + Stick with one tense (past)

  + Website, website, or web s...
46
3 ELEMENTS OF COMPELLING CONTENT




Focus
Credibility
Consistency                        47
NOW GO
            Thanks a bunch for listening!




              +
           ROCK IT. stephaniehay.com/blog
http://spea...
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No Boring Content Allowed!

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NO BORING CONTENT ALLOWED!

Since designers and developers have been busy creating standards-based work, it’s understandable that they haven’t necessarily kept sharp on their written word. But are we so focused on conceiving, designing, developing, and marketing the most mind-blowing ideas that we’re apathetic to (correctly) adding a space between “log” and “in?”

<a>Steph Hay</a> says, no way José! (The question is, do you? And who is José, anyway?)

In this talk, she discusses ways in which web folks can write compelling, credible content that piques interest and encourages action from readers. Refreshees will leave with tips to elevate their content game -- whether they're aiming to more successfully write dynamic résumés and cover letters, describe their work in creative portfolios, or convey value to gain one more paying subscriber.

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No Boring Content Allowed!

  1. 1. NO BORING CONTENT ALLOWED! WRITING COMPELLING TEXT FOR COVER LETTERS, RESUMES+ PORTFOLIOS steph hay {refreshdc} july 22, 2010 1
  2. 2. http://www.flickr.com/photos/headlouse/1484615917/sizes/m/in/photostream/ YOU’RE KICK-ASS CONVEY TO READERS THAT 2
  3. 3. Client: ACME is the world’s largest manufacturer of ineffectual weapons for coyotes. I made wireframes, created a new design, and integrated Drupal for content management. View the website >> Skills: Drupal, XHTML/CSS, javascript, Flash, Ruby on Rails, .NET, SharePoint, Google Analytics, Captcha 3
  4. 4. GRAPHIC DESIGN XHTML WORDPRESS BROWSER-COMPATIBLE AJAX FRONT-END DEVELOPMENT USER EXPERIENCE DESIGN JQUERY CSS INFORMATION ARCHITECTURE CONTENT MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS JS SOME PHP EDUCATION BANNER ADS 4
  5. 5. TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN, I AM SUBMITTING MY... AS ADVERTISED ON... ...OVER 5 YEARS EXPERIENCE I HAVE DESIGNED 90 WEBSITES... ...TALENTED AND CREATIVE MORE DETAILS IN MY RESUME ...HOPE TO HEAR BACK SOON THANK YOU. 5
  6. 6. TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN, I AM SUBMITTING MY... AS ADVERTISED ON... ...OVER 5 YEARS EXPERIENCE I HAVE DESIGNED 90 WEBSITES... ...TALENTED AND CREATIVE MORE DETAILS IN MY RESUME ...HOPE TO HEAR BACK SOON THANK YOU. ? 6
  7. 7. 3 ELEMENTS OF COMPELLING CONTENT Focus Credibility Consistency 7
  8. 8. MAKE NO MISTAKE... This is Hard 8
  9. 9. FOCUS IN WHICH AREAS CAN BE DEMONSTRATED ? 9
  10. 10. 3 CHARACTERISTICS OF FOCUS Audience Medium Network 10
  11. 11. Copyright © Lemuhr http://acidcow.com/pics/4553-dead-flies-art-15-pics.html AUDIENCE 11
  12. 12. Copyright © Lemuhr http://acidcow.com/pics/4553-dead-flies-art-15-pics.html MEDIUM 12
  13. 13. Copyright © Lemuhr http://acidcow.com/pics/4553-dead-flies-art-15-pics.html NETWORK 13
  14. 14. CREDIBILITY IN WHICH WAYS CAN BE CONVEYED? 14
  15. 15. 4 CHARACTERISTICS OF CREDIBILITY Engagement Results Humility Intent 15
  16. 16. Copyright © Lemuhr http://acidcow.com/pics/4553-dead-flies-art-15-pics.html ENGAGEMENT DEMONSTRATE 16
  17. 17. “ DEMONSTRATE ENGAGEMENT Objective: To earn a project management position with a revered firm in the DC area. “ 17
  18. 18. DEMONSTRATE ENGAGEMENT Don’t be a cog. Explain how you enthusiastically made great things happen. 18
  19. 19. “ DEMONSTRATE ENGAGEMENT In 2008, I completed the design and development of a 2nd generation, enterprise-level RIA using object-oriented event-based AJAX techniques and made heavy use of the “ JavaScript. I built the app on Dojo framework (v.1.1.0). 19
  20. 20. 20
  21. 21. Copyright © Lemuhr http://acidcow.com/pics/4553-dead-flies-art-15-pics.html RESULTS-ORIENTED KEEP STATEMENTS 21
  22. 22. “ KEEPING STATEMENTS RESULTS-ORIENTED Participated in design discussions with clients Generated logo concepts Learned WordPress to provide maintenance support “ 22
  23. 23. KEEPING STATEMENTS RESULTS-ORIENTED Don’t just list what you did. Explain how you did it differently or extraordinarily. 23
  24. 24. “ KEEPING STATEMENTS RESULTS-ORIENTED Weeks ahead of schedule, I coded and delivered Section 508-Compliant HTML and CSS for the development team’s seamless integration. “ 24
  25. 25. 25
  26. 26. OliveCrush knew just how to translate our text into a beautiful, artistic product, especially appealing to the age group we sought to target. 26
  27. 27. Copyright © Lemuhr http://acidcow.com/pics/4553-dead-flies-art-15-pics.html WITHOUT CONCEIT BE CONFIDENT 27
  28. 28. “ BEING CONFIDENT WITHOUT CONCEIT I can help you with your sr. web interface graphic designer (bethesda) Resume attached. Check out my captcha enabled, “ ajax/java interface and massive on-line database skills at ... Thanks 28
  29. 29. BEING CONFIDENT WITHOUT CONCEIT Don’t rely fully on aesthetics. Complement portfolios by describing how you think. 29
  30. 30. “ BEING CONFIDENT WITHOUT CONCEIT I believe in clear and honest communication. You can count on me to listen to your business objectives, be available when be transparent about my process. “ you need to contact me, and to 30
  31. 31. KEEPING STATEMENTS RESULTS-ORIENTED 31
  32. 32. I wanted to mimic the displays of his many exhibitions - no distractions and minimal info. All forms of navigation remain hidden until requested, allowing the imagery to commandeer the screen. 32
  33. 33. Copyright © Lemuhr http://acidcow.com/pics/4553-dead-flies-art-15-pics.html WITH INTENTION WRITE CONTENT 33
  34. 34. “ WRITING CONTENT WITH INTENTION The webiste has greatly improved their web marketing and consiquently improved sales of their debut album... “ 34
  35. 35. WRITING CONTENT WITH INTENTION Don’t be careless. Take the time to ensure your writing sings beautifully. 35
  36. 36. “ WRITING CONTENT WITH INTENTION I have helped strengthen the PBS Parents brand through my design leadership. It is now a major funding and partnership won the 2006 and 2009 “ opportunity for PBS and has Parents Choice Gold Awards. 36
  37. 37. 37
  38. 38. CONSISTENCY IN WHICH AREAS CAN BEST BE ACHIEVED ? 38
  39. 39. 3 CHARACTERISTICS OF CONSISTENCY Structure Voice Style 39
  40. 40. Copyright © Lemuhr http://acidcow.com/pics/4553-dead-flies-art-15-pics.html STRUCTURE 40
  41. 41. + Promote experience over education + Include only what’s most relevant + Scatter keywords throughout STRUCTURE 41
  42. 42. Copyright © Lemuhr http://acidcow.com/pics/4553-dead-flies-art-15-pics.html VOICE 42
  43. 43. + Write in a genuine tone + Avoid bloated technical statements + Rewrite anything that sounds ridiculous when read out loud VOICE 43
  44. 44. Copyright © Lemuhr http://acidcow.com/pics/4553-dead-flies-art-15-pics.html STYLE 44
  45. 45. + To end (or not to end) bulleted lists with periods + Stick with one tense (past) + Website, website, or web site STYLE 45
  46. 46. 46
  47. 47. 3 ELEMENTS OF COMPELLING CONTENT Focus Credibility Consistency 47
  48. 48. NOW GO Thanks a bunch for listening! + ROCK IT. stephaniehay.com/blog http://speakerrate.com/talks/4131-no-boring-content-allowed 48
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