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Your precious words. You know they’ve got to be right to attract the audience you want. You’ve slaved over them, carefully crafting each phrase. You finally hit “publish,” and what happens? Nobody reads them. No comments, no tweets, no sharing on Facebook. It’s enough to send a writer into deep depression and wipe out motivation to keep producing great content.
One of the most repeated rules of writing compelling copy is to stress benefits, not features. In other words, identify the underlying benefit that each feature of a product or service provides to the prospect, because that’s what will prompt the purchase. This is one rule that always applies, except when it doesn’t. We’ll look at the exceptions in a bit.
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.
Oh, those idealistic good old days. Back when we truly believed that the global digital community would fact-check lies, make us smarter, and force our institutions to serve the greater good. As the man said, “How’s that working out for us?” It turns out that the social media utopia, like other utopias, didn’t end up as rosy as we’d hoped — mainly because it’s made of human beings.
The first time I rode a motorcycle, I fell in love. Between the power, the speed, and the freedom, I knew it was something I wanted to keep doing for a long time. But I also knew I had a lot to learn. Learning to ride a motorcycle requires several new skills. You have to learn how to maneuver and balance a heavy, two-wheeled vehicle, how to change gears, how to let the clutc ...
Ever see a numbered headline like the one above and try to guess what the three things are? Sometimes it’s easy; sometimes it’s not. In this case, you could be thinking I’m going to talk about content, copy, and email. And while you’re right that those things are important, that’s not what this article is about.
Before we get started — just a reminder that if you’ve been thinking about moving your site to StudioPress Sites, this is a fantastic week to do it. Not only will you get your first month free, we’ll even migrate your existing WordPress site for you. Also for free. Hooray for free, my favorite amount. StudioPress Sites lets you keep the power and flexibility of WordPress … without the hassles.
It’s been less than three months since we launched StudioPress Sites, our new solution that combines the ease of an all-in-one website builder with the flexible power of WordPress. The response and feedback have been phenomenal. And the icing on the cake is that we’re already winning accolades. In an independent speed test performed this month by WebMatros, StudioPress Site ...
Polly Professional has a lot going on today. She has a blog post due, a podcast script to write, an employee review to conduct, two client meetings, and she’s meeting her cousin Penny for dinner. And then it comes. Ding. An email from Steve Stranger. Maybe he’s a sales pro trying to set up a “quick meeting to discuss his company’s solutions,” but it’s clear he has no idea ...
When we talk about content marketing strategy, all the discussions of heroes, journeys, and maps can seem a bit esoteric. What does it look like in real life? And how exactly does it relate to email marketing? Content marketing is a broader discipline than email marketing, but your email list is the core focus.
I hate to be the one to break this to you, but … Your audience does not need your ideas. Sorry to disappoint you. It’s true though. Your audience is exposed to plenty of ideas. Everywhere they turn online and offline, they are bombarded with ideas. Ideas, ideas, ideas. Mostly filler and fluff. Think about yourself. Do you need any more ideas to consume and consider? No.
Quick poll: When you hear the term thought leader, do your eyes roll or do your ears perk up? I’m on team eye roll, and I explained why in Monday’s post. On Tuesday, the ever-elusive Robert Bruce shared the secret to writing compulsively readable copy. Like all of Robert’s secrets, this one is difficult … but it’s sound.
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.
I’m going to let you in on a little secret. It’s something the immortals — from Aristotle to Ogilvy to Mamet — have known, but few have stated it as directly as I’m about to. By now, many of you know the basics of the craft of copywriting … Know your audience. Know your product cold. Research. Nail the headline. Write plainly, in the language of your audience. Research more.
We all want to get traffic to our websites. We want to build audiences who are interested in what we have to say and responsive to our offers. And so it’s natural to think that we should become “thought leaders.” (Or, to push the expression a little further down Jargon Lane, “thought leaders in our space.
On Monday, our good and wise friend Andy Crestodina showed the difference between optimizing for search engines and optimizing for social shares. He also gives us a nice piece of advice about how you can get really crafty and do both. Proofreading might not seem exciting, until the day you publish a post with the headline Making that Shit into the Next Phase of Your Career.
It’s April! Don’t ask me where March went, because I have no idea. But it’s time once again for a pair of Content Excellence Challenge prompts. Each month this year, we’ll give you two prompts — one intended to make you a better writer and one intended to make you a more productive one. This month’s prompts both share a creative dimension and an ultra pragmatic one.
Two weeks ago, my side project Further had one of its highest traffic days ever. If you’re not familiar, Further is a personal development email newsletter in which I curate content from around the web. It’s basically whatever I find useful and interesting related to health, wealth, wisdom, and travel.
Solutions for Smarter Content Marketing