Archive for the ‘Writing and Editing’ Category

Without systems, content marketing is a bust

Creating content for your business is a long-term play. Not that there aren’t search and traffic benefits — there are — but as search engines get smarter, content marketers need to get smarter too by prioritizing customer value over short-term wins. The most pressing problem is: how do you achieve that while also achieving business objectives?

One issue is that people prize things like links and disregard the opportunity to create content that meets more complex search demands. But I also think it’s unclear what kind of content creates value, for the organization and the customer. Read On…

Is your ghostwriter making you look like bad?

If they are, it’s probably your fault.

Content is now a game nearly every business is playing, and I think it’s great. Done well, content marketing — even at the most elementary level — can lead to big rewards.

However, the reality is few people have time to craft business content that actually drives results. Yes, there are a handful of entrepreneurs and VCs and solopreneurs who do a swell job writing excellent, in-depth content that I am actually envious of — and I say that as someone who used to get paid to do that (these days I edit more than I ever write) — but they are almost certainly outliers. Read On…

5 questions to inspire your next business article

It’s  9 p.m. and once again, you can’t think of a damn thing to write.

But you’ve got to get your next [assignment/blog post/business article/autoresponder campaign/etc.] out the door. Preferably yesterday. Writer’s block, right?

Nah. “Writer’s block” is a bit of a cop-out, isn’t it? No knock on writers who believe in the muse, but I think it’s silly to suggest that all good writing starts with an epiphany. Worse, it makes writing seem esoteric and scary to the many people on this planet who write daily — not for pleasure, but for business. Read On…

How to use a swipe file to fix your content strategy

Ask anyone: writing well is hard to do. Writing well and writing regularly, even harder. But you can make it easier.

One of my favorite tips — something most marketing copywriters are familiar with, thanks to the David Ogilvys and Robert W. Blys of the world — is to keep a swipe file handy. Copywriters keep swipe files of brilliant heds and marketing campaigns for inspiration and concrete, structural formulas that can be leveraged in their own copy. But swipe files are not just for advertisers and copywriters. I’ve always kept a variety of swipe files, but recently it’s dawned on me that, as great as this is for me, the people who REALLY need swipe files are my clients. Because the one issue I hear from them? All the time? It’s not  lack of ideas. (They have plenty of those.)  Read On…