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I know. I know. I know. “Viral” is an actual term people use to describe wildly popular content that has spread across a variety of distribution channels, landing in our Twitter feeds, Apple News updates, text messages, and emails from Uncle Sue. But I still don’t like the word. When “going viral” is a goal for a piece of content, it puts me a little on edge.
Whenever someone questions the importance of proofreading, my go-to response is: “Pubic relations is quite different from public relations.” We all sometimes make a typo that omits or changes a letter in a word. A typo like that is difficult to spot when the mistake is still an actual word (or words). Just last week, I wrote “head lice” instead of “headline.
By now you know that — technical details aside — SEO is not separate from content marketing; it’s an integrated aspect of content marketing. Optimizing your content for search engines is part of your craft and a skill you can strengthen with practice. But even when you rank well for search terms your audience uses, the real test is what happens when someone clicks through to your website.
Why do we spend so much time researching, creating, optimizing, and promoting our content? “Geez, Stefanie. That’s a silly question,” you might be thinking. “You of all people should know that content marketing helps with our business goals. In fact, you wrote about that last week.” And you’d be absolutely correct. But that’s not what I want to focus on today.
You had trouble sleeping again last night. Up until the time you got into bed, you were looking at their Twitter feed, their Facebook page, and their website. It’s your competitor. You’re completely preoccupied with everything they do … and for a seemingly good reason. Their customer base seems to keep growing and they keep expanding their offerings, while you’re just tryi ...
I watch a lot of YouTube videos about the best ways to clean your bathroom. In fact, I realized that I spend way more time watching “hacks, tricks, and tips” about how to efficiently clean a bathroom than I do actually cleaning my bathroom. Given the hundreds of thousands of views on these types of videos, perhaps it’s not just me.
When I was a cub copy editor, I learned a simple fact-checking technique that is still one of my favorites today. It may seem unimportant, but if you don’t use this technique and fail to catch a certain type of mistake, you could set yourself up for extra work later. This is one of my favorites because it demonstrates that reviewing your copy and content for accuracy goes b ...
I’ve been rinsing my mouth with salt water after every meal for the past two weeks. It’s part of the healing process after a wisdom tooth extraction. Oral surgery: the gift that keeps on giving. During the first week, I spilled salt all over my bathroom counter. My container of salt has a perforated opening similar to a salt shaker, and sometimes the salt got stuck in the holes.
Have you ever read a blog post, listened to a podcast episode, or watched a video and thought: “I kind of get what this person is saying — and I think I agree — but it’s difficult to follow their main points. The content feels incomplete.” When content consumers have reactions like that, it delays them from sharing your content and subscribing to get more — ultimately inc ...
Serious content creators know that each article they publish is a piece of a larger content marketing arena. But the thought of generating content ideas on a regular basis often knocks us out before the opening bell even rings. It can be difficult to consistently write exceptional content that encourages visitors to stick around and learn about your unique selling proposition.
Last week, when I wrote about how to become a writer, I forgot to mention something about why you’d want to be a writer. Writers are communicators. If you’re proud of your ideas, you want to be able to communicate them clearly and precisely. Headlines are your first opportunity to present your message to the audience you want to reach.
Stop. I see you, mid-eye-roll. I know you’re aware that you need to write regularly if you want to become a writer. You might aim to write something every day, even if you don’t publish it anywhere. There’s no substitute for that type of practice. It’s that valuable. But what do you write about if you don’t have any thoughts to express? Some of you may now be talking out l ...
Restorative yoga is a gentle, passive practice that promotes relaxation in the body. The other day at the start of my weekly restorative yoga class, our instructor asked us which areas of the body we’d like to focus on that day. A few other regular students shouted out, “Shoulders! … Lower back! … Psoas!” However, I stayed quiet because I started writing this article in my head.
“Words are flowing out like endless rain into a paper cup. They slither wildly as they slip away across the universe.” – The Beatles, “Across the Universe” So, who’s responsible for taming wild words and presenting them in a straightforward format that’s engaging and educational? Content editors, of course.
I have an affinity for service businesses. I love when people: Recognize that they possess specific skills that can help others Invest in training that will help them succeed Offer their expertise and problem-solving abilities in exchange for money But I don’t love when these driven individuals make a certain mistake that invites unnecessary frustrations into their ...
Eenie meenie miney mo … You likely have used the “eenie-meenie-miney-mo method” when making an inconsequential decision. That’s the opposite of how you should make decisions regarding the look of your content and the message you want to communicate. Your content needs to be a carefully crafted presentation that is the result of intentional choices.
It doesn’t matter how long it will take. You’ll get the project done. It doesn’t matter what time of the day it is. You’ll work until you get it right. You have — what I call — a “do-whatever-it-takes attitude.” It’s because you’re a writer and you possess an unbridled enthusiasm for creating. You should be proud of that, but you also might be frustrated because it’s tough ...
Miriam Lafayette really knows what she’s doing. She absolutely has it together. Who’s Miriam Lafayette? I made her up while washing dishes, but let’s have her represent a person whose work you love. You look forward to her new content every time she publishes. You’d be so excited if you could have brunch with her in a fancy cafe.
“Come sit down, Child. Gently put your hands on my crystal ball,” I say, directing you into my dimly lit fortune teller studio. I’m wearing a Stevie Nicks-inspired black lace shawl and gold hoop earrings. “You’d like to know if you should publish guest blog posts on your website, yes? Let’s ask.
“Oh no. We have to toss them out,” the bartender said with a sour look on her face as she removed a thin, black straw from her mouth. Four intricate cocktails she just made were lined up in a row in front of her. “All of them?!” her coworker asked. “Yep. When I taste-tested them, I realized I added too much Fernet-Branca.” And down the drain the cocktails went.