Do you use content to promote yourself and your business?
Are you struggling to create marketing and PR content that engages and gets people's attention?
Applying some failsafe tips, you can take your content up a notch and beyond!
And don't worry that you're not a born writer.
In fact, many writers are not born writers. Michael Crichton studied biological anthropology. John Grisham wanted to make a go of accounting. However, you don't have to be either one of those guys to make a successful run at writing your own PR and marketing copy.
In this article, you'll discover how to write copy that grabs people's attention.
10 Quick PR Content Tips
Yes, that's really my number one tip. The old adage that practice makes perfect is certainly applicable. Don't be afraid to go through several rewrites. John Grisham didn't slam a bestseller out of the park on his first try, and you won't either.
The fact of the matter is:
The more you write, the more you'll hone your skill at the craft.
#2: No Techy Speak or Kindergarten Tone
Most likely you've experienced the frustration of searching for an answer online, only to be caught in the chasm somewhere between you need to have a PhD to understand this and I'm going to talk to you like you're a first grader and tell you things you already know.
Both are equally frustrating.
Your copy should be informative, yet written on an intellectual level that doesn't leave your reader confused or annoyed. Aim for the middle ground. Assume your audience has a basic understanding of your message and then sprinkle bits of what may be new ideas throughout your copy.
3: Don't Churn out Prattle
Writing just for the sake of writing doesn't get you anywhere. Statistically speaking, if your business maintains a blog, you'll garner up to 67% more leads than your anti-blogging competitor. However, that's assuming that your topics are relevant.
As one of my mentors used to say, "Put the fire in the writing, or put the writing in the fire." Your writing should serve a purpose. It should ignite readers by providing valuable and actionable information. Start by creating a captivating headline. Need help in that department? Here's a how-to.
4. Shoddy Grammar is Unacceptable
I will not claim to have a perfect understanding of all the rules of the English language. Most people don't. However, a basic grasp of grammar rules is important in writing copy. If someone is gonna half to read a sentence 3 or 4 times, because of a missplaced comma a word you did'nt spell right or because you write f-o-n-e-t-i-c-k-l-y you're credability and chance to win them over takes an instant nosedive. See what I mean?
5. Follow the Rules, but Know When to Throw Them out
On the other hand, focusing only on the rules of grammar might leave you with more of a term paper than an engaging piece. Remember, you're writing for people. A conversational style is more engaging. That might mean using colloquialisms and a bit of slang in order to reach people on a level that makes them want to take action. Caution should be exercised in this area, though. You don't want to make it overly informal to the point of losing professionalism.
6. Create Your Own Voice
The truth is:
You already have your own voice. Your personality is behind your company, and it needs to shine through in your writing.
7. Edit, Edit, and Then Edit Some More
Give your writing a first edit when you've completed it. Then pass it off to a colleague who will edit some more. This is a crucial step, since our brains are hardwired to fill in the blanks when a piece of the puzzle is missing. You may have spelled your, instead of you're. You may very well understand the grammar rule governing this choice, but if you're the writer, chances are your brain will go into autocorrect mode.
A few things you want to look for when you edit:
- spelling, including words that spellcheck doesn't catch, such as there and their
- content (Does the overall message fit your topic?)
- readability (Does it make sense and is it easy to read?) Check your readability score here.
- does it engage the reader?
Sometimes, just a few extra punch words are needed to go from blah to yeah, baby!
8. Give Yourself a Deadline
If you were paying someone to write for you, you'd want it to be completed in a timely fashion. You should expect no less from yourself or your team. Plus, a deadline gives more assurance that it will be completed, and not shelved for an indeterminate amount of time.
At the same time, writing is a bit of an art. You don't want to rush it.
Try this tip:
If the inspiration just isn't hitting, you might need to take a breather and come back to it. When establishing your deadline, make sure you allow for this kind of wiggle room.
10. Have a Game Plan
All that work you put into your writing should have a payoff. However, only if you have a strategy will you see concrete results. Good PR copy rarely (if ever) happens by chance. A good editorial calendar like this one will help keep you on track.
Lastly, remember that you don't have to go it alone. If writing your own copy is too overwhelming a task for you, enlist the help of team members or outside support to make sure you keep the quality in your writing that your audience has come to expect from your company.
If you're not sure who to turn to for help, we've got your back. Our 60-day content program gives you:
- A strategic plan to meet your business objectives
- Original content custom-designed for lead generation
- Media placements in targeted media outlets
- Amplification of social network presence
- Tracking and reporting
A lot can happen in 60 days! Plus, you'll get an invaluable education on how to take the reins and turn your company into a known industry leader.