Tag Archives: copywriting

What it means to create effective content

effective content writingI recently blogged about how it’s worth ignoring common SEO tactics, such as stuffing articles with keywords, to focus more on using effective content to get the best search results. Now, I’m happy to introduce a guest post from Mary-Ann Johnn, Digital Marketer, who’ll tell you more about effective ‘content’. Continue reading

Why content often has nothing to do with copywriting

content marketing copywritingFollowing on from the great Professional Copywriters’ Network conference last Friday, I’d like to take a moment to discuss the crossover between content marketing and copywriting. The most contentious issue of the day was the merits (or lack of merits) of content marketing, which Andy Maslen has done a great job of summarising in his blog. Rather than recycle his words, or any of the other genius imparted throughout the day, I want to take a moment to spew out my own thoughts on content marketing and blog writing. In short, that online content, even when perceived as a marketing tool, often has nothing to do with copy. Continue reading

What I’ve learnt after a year as a full time freelancer

one year freelanceOn October 1st, 2013, it was exactly one year since I officially registered as a sole trader (marking my first payment for freelance work; I’d been marketing myself for about a month beforehand). I’d been freelancing on and off for a few years, but that was the point when I took the plunge and made it full time. Because I was earning money, and had to declare my decision officially. Since then, I’ve worked as something of a literary mercenary, and made money in every way that words can. I’ve worked on brochures, screenplays, websites and magazine articles, and continued teaching along the way. And here are the most important lessons I’ve learnt: Continue reading

This one simple writing tip will waste your time

one simple tipIn my downtime between copywriting tasks, as any budding freelancer should, I scour books and blogs for tips and tactics to better understand the world of content writing. Half of the people on the internet offering advice, it seems, have one incredible tip that could change everything for you. They’re anxious to share it with you, but it’s hidden behind a fortified essay of additional information.
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What does your choice of tense say about you?

effective reflective writing, tensesMaking your point in as few words as possible is not all about choosing the right words. One area worth paying particular attention to is choosing the right tense. With a cover letter, a CV, a service history, and even with parts of a product description, you need to tell a story, no matter how short – and your choice of tense can greatly impact the meaning of your tale. Continue reading

How words can sell food: copywriting in menus

copywriting for menusEvery time I visit Las Iguanas, before I’ve even ordered I find myself longing for my next visit. One look at their menu tends to make me think a single meal is not enough. You can see on their website and promotional material that they put a bit of effort into their copywriting, but it’s impressive, and worth noting, that their sales efforts continue after you’ve settled down to eat. I imagine there’s some personal preference involved (if you despise Latin American food then you might not be convinced), but I can’t help but be drawn in by every item on the menu. Continue reading

A business principle worth repeating: positively good advertising

business principle: positively good advertisingWhat’s the most memorable business principle you’ve learnt from a book? There’s a ton of them out there, but one from Ogilvy on Advertising always sticks in my mind. It’s a principle I repeat to a lot of people, because it says so much, not just about good advertising, or good copywriting, but about good business in general. That concept is Joel Raphaelson‘s theory behind ‘the positively good’.  Continue reading

The mindset for persuasive copywriting

persuasive copywritingWhen writing persuasive copy, you need to be in a specific mindset to appeal to your audience. The difference between persuasive copywriting and ineffective copy can be subtle, though. This was a point that stirred in my mind after I attended a bid writing seminar run by the delightful people at Boost Consultancy. The speaker made some excellent points regarding the mindset necessary for successful bid writing, which I thought was also a solid basis for some persuasive copywriting considerations. These points aren’t necessarily true for all advertising copy, where there is room for a lot of creativity, but generally if you are producing long copy, especially in a formal setting (such as cover letters and direct response marketing), this advice can prove very helpful.  Continue reading

Pros and cons of writing your own professional blog

Freelance copywriter, writing, typing, working hard, marketing and delighting in copy, professional blogger.Following from my post encouraging the use of blogs to promote business, the next question is whether to write your own blog or outsource the task. As a freelance copywriter, writing other people’s blogs is part of what I do, so it’s natural I’m going to demand you hire someone to write a blog for you – but I know when a job’s necessary or not. I’d never encourage someone to hire me if I thought they could do a better job themselves. And there’s a number of reasons that might be the case. Here’s my attempt at a balanced look at the pros and cons of writing your own professional blog, instead of hiring someone to write it for you. Continue reading

Freelance Famine: coping with New Year

Angry copywriter, furious, typing man.Christmas is over, New Year is gone, and for the next month or two the world will be drearily nursing hangovers and sobbing about how dark and dreary the days remain. Those in regular employment aren’t happy about going to work, and won’t work as hard. Those of us who are self-employed suffer a knock-on effect that it’s difficult to find new clients, and a slower workforce in general can mean no work at all trickling through to the freelance workforce. Following from my article on dealing with freelancing fear, here’s a few tips for getting through a freelance famine: Continue reading