Everyone writes. Now more than ever. And even though you might not think you are a writer, I’ll bet at some point today you had assumed the position of one — eyes on a screen, hands poised on the keyboard and looking for the words to begin at least one of the following:
• An email
• A blog post
• Social media content
• A pitches or proposal
• Video script
• Book proposal or manuscript
• Product description
Here is a mini guide to how to write better copy.
In an online world, our words reflect who we are as individuals and as companies. They can make us look clever and competent or just the opposite. Our words matter more now because making a meaningful connection matters more.
To help you be an even better writer and create content that gets the results you want, I’ve put together a mini course on what I’ve learned about writing over the years.
Three Mistakes You May Be Making
Telling Not Showing
Starting an email or message with a statement of what you are going to do can fall flat and have the reader closing the email before she’s even started.
Today I’m writing to tell you about a new service we are offering.
Are you staring at a blank screen, trying to write your next social media post? What if you had someone who could do all that for you? Let us help you free up your time for all those important things you do running your business and creating a life you love.
Following the Pack
Using the same words and phrases from a boiler plate of marketing might seem like a good idea. After all, it works for so and so. But catch phrases such as “we offer service and quality” don’t set you apart. Anyone coming to you would hope that your care about that. What really sets you apart? What makes you get up every day and do what you do? What makes you feel good about your work as you go to bed at night? Begin there, and then keep going until you have something that really sounds like you.
Writing to Everyone
Write to one person and make it conversational. Readers respond when you write something that aligns with what they are going through.
Three Ways To Make Your Copy Connect
Don’t make the reader work too hard to understand what you are trying to say.
Ask questions, especially in your social media posts. It can be as simple as “What would you do if this happened to you?” and then go on to tell your story.
Pull your reader in
Starting a post or blog with statements such as “If you are like me,” or “I don’t normally tell people this…” or “Can I let you in a secret?” invite the reader in.
Three Must-Dos Before Hitting Send
Write, Rewrite, Edit
All great writing is in the editing. Editing helps you better organize material and paring it down can make content more powerful.
Read it Out Loud
This is a great way to catch typos, but it also helps you get a better perspective on what you’ve written. You can catch places where the flow gets bogged down such as using “do not” when “don’t” would be friendlier. This also helps you see if you are repeating yourself or if your message is unclear.
Check Spelling and Grammar
This would seem to be a no-brainer, but if you are like me, you might be the only one proofing your work. I use Grammarly to catch spelling and syntax errors.