Monday, October 12, 2015

Simplify Your Writing to Attract More Business


The purpose of writing is to inform, entertain, persuade and inspire. Does your writing -- be it an email, blog post or social media update - do that? Does it attract more business?

Compelling writing captures readers' attention. It is clear, concise and flows very smoothly. Use these tips to simplify your writing and attract high quality leads (especially the elusive Internet ones!).

Practice economy:
  • Use shorter, simpler words
  • Pay attention to distinct meaning of words
  • Always try to make a sentence shorter for more punch
  • Any word that can go, must go

Avoid repetition:
  • Ruthlessly delete any ideas that are repeated
  • Aim to make a unique point in every sentence
  • Use synonyms to help avoid repetition

Don't overcomplicate things:
  • Don't make simple points sound more complex than they are
  • Avoid double negatives
  • Don't force your reader to unscramble what you've just said
  • Use clean formatting to help readers work their way through your content

Appeal to the common denominator:
  • Aim to keep your writing as personable and universally understandable as possible
  • Be acutely aware to what your audience cares about

Avoid using weak words:
  • don't use: somewhat, somehow, a little, arguably, rather, it seems, it appears as though, as it's often said, notably (these words take away power and authority)
  • avoid weak words that don't say much, redundant words that don't say anything and hedging (or semi-commital) words that soften your tone and sap authority

Don't overstretch thoughts:
  • watch out for run-on sentences
  • avoid using too many sub-clauses when possible

Use active versus passive voice:
  • active sentences make comprehension easier
  • active sentences also make the author sound more authoritative

Keep in mind: a confused mind always says 'no'. People with clear, simple and elegant writing always win. Think deeply about every single word and have a strong intention to connect with your audience. In other words, keep it real.

What is your advice about writing effectively? Share in the comments below.


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