Writing ain’t easy, am I right?
But maybe you’re not the best writer.
Or maybe your team doesn’t have a full-time copywriter.
So, who’s filling the void? Your content’s not gonna write itself!
Or is it?
In any case, your writing has to be good. So whether it’s you, or your project manager, or your not-quite-a-writer-but-wants-to-write type of team member, here are some quick tips to do it well.
Be clear and concise.
Say as much as you can in as few words as possible. Avoid overly flowery language. Avoid excessive adjectives and adverbs. Avoid making outrageous claims. Be eloquent, but be brief.
Email copy. Web copy. Print copy. Ad copy. It’s almost always best to be succinct. Sure, it’s a good idea to switch up your sentence structure from time to time. But run-on sentences—in a massive wall of text—aren’t doing it for anyone, let alone your audience.
Use the active voice.
Start sentences with the person (or noun) who is performing the action—not the other way around. For example:
GOOD: James ate five Big Macs.
BAD: Five Big Macs were eaten by James.
Trust your ear and your eye. If something sounds or looks clunky, check if you’re writing in the active voice. If you’re using words like “was” or “were” followed by “by,” consider reworking your sentence.
One rule of thumb might be: “Always put the person first.”
For a quick and dirty grammar lesson on this, keep reading or scroll down until you find it. It will both make sense and have purpose, I promise.
Choose words wisely.
You’ve heard this a million times, but it can’t be overstated: Know. Your. Audience.
Avoid using slang or jargon your readers won’t understand. Write in plain English. If your content depends on a technical term—but your audience won’t know what it means—define it. Conversely, don’t insult your audience by defining words they should already know.
Pro tip: Use words you know well. There’s nothing worse than using a fancy word in the wrong context. Thesaurus.com may be the most dangerous weapon in a writer’s arsenal, for better or for worse. Use it wisely or not at all.
Pro tip: Power Thesaurus can be a clutch crutch in a pinch, but be careful.
That’s all for now. Hopefully these tips help the copywriting rookies and the experts on your team alike. If you still need a hand, perhaps with storytelling, or building a website, let us know! Contact us online, get a quote, or call us today at (716) 926.9266.
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