10 tips to improve your writing skills

What is the biggest challenge for a writer?

Nothing.

Well, by “nothing” I mean a blank white screen and a flashing cursor.

It makes fun of you with its unlimited potential. It fills you with the fear that everything you put on this screen is not a correction of this ancient emptiness.

We, as content marketers, face this challenge almost every day and find a way to connect, engage and persuade content.

I have spent my entire adult life working in content ditches – first as a comedy writer and now as a content marketer. Here are some tips I’ve received that can make your writing better and make this blank screen less intimidating.

10 tips for B2B marketers to improve their writing skills

# 1: READ

In his excellent book About writingSays Stephen King, “If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have time to write.” And if one of the world’s most prolific and famous authors can take the time to read, so can we.

Be sure to read the marketing content to see what the competition is doing. But don’t stop there. Read poems, novels, fiction, fiction, good things and guilt. Everything you read will help you continue to develop a clear voice – even a bad example can show you that not to do.

# 2: Be aware of the rhythm

Now, I’m not saying you should write blog posts in a jambic pentameter (but if you do, link to me). But it is good to follow the rhythm of the writing.

For example, observe for parallel structures. Over time, they annoy your reader. They will soon be fully attuned.

Notice how all three sentences mentioned in the last paragraph have the same cadence? The same goes for short sentences. You put them one after the other. They are all the same.

Change the rhythm in your sentences – string them with punctuation; let one stretch like a rubber band. Then, click! Put some short ones. Maybe a fragment, even. See how the writing comes to life?

# 3: Practice the introductions

For many writers, starting an article is the hardest part. Many even write the whole text and add an introduction after that.

Too many of us were scarred in high school English class, where the introduction had to introduce all the points we started talking about and had to start with something like, “Throughout recorded history,” or “Webster’s dictionary defines …”

Practice writing form-breaking introductions:

  • Ask a question
  • Make a contradictory or otherwise intriguing statement
  • Write a personal anecdote

In short, think less about introducing each point of speech and hooking and retrieving the reader.

# 4: Don’t tell your audience what they already know

This is in line with the last point, as introductions are often intended to be obvious. “Everyone knows this …” “We all understand this …”

Whenever you find that you are listening to an audience that you both know, take a step back. What can you tell them that they do pole yet heard? What is the fastest way to get good things done?

# 5: Let go of outdated rules

And speaking of a high school English class: it is better to be clear, natural and genuine in your prose than to follow archaic rules of grammar. Language is a living being that is constantly changing. So don’t look at what Mrs. Funke told you in 9th grade.

For example:

  • End sentences with prefaces
  • Put commas where they naturally feel
  • Use sentence breaks
  • Use. Weird. Punctuation. Sest. Pressure!
  • Embrace the singular “they”

And many others. Basically, you should look like a real life person, not a textbook.

# 6: Read it aloud

When we talk about writing in a “conversational tone”, we say that writing should seem like talking to a friend rather than reading something rigid and formal. What better way to ensure conversability than to read your work aloud?

Now that we are all home offices instead of open concept semi-booths, it is easier to do that. In the past, I sometimes shaved in a conference room or chat room to read my work aloud. It’s amazing how many ways you can find to make your writing more natural instead of reading.

# 7: Try editing

I like the way Google Docs saves a history of everything I write. This makes editing much easier and the contribution for making bigger changes so much lower. You can try something, and if that doesn’t work, it’s easy to go back to the previous draft.

Experiment with the structure of your content – move around the paragraph to see if it improves the flow. Try to cut out the phrases you are most proud of – the odds are the ones that are most confident and connect the least likely with your audience. Believe me, I’m talking about experience.

One easy way to experiment with editing: cut the first paragraph of the introduction and see if you’re missing it. I often find that the first paragraph is either turning the wheel or setting up a scene that the audience doesn’t really need.

# 8: Write, wait, review, review

Writing and reviewing requires two different ways of thinking. If you try to do both at the same time, you probably won’t be doing as well as you could. For the first draft, focus on getting the words to the screen. When you’re ready, walk away and let it rest – overnight if possible.

Then you can approach what you have written with fresh eyes, read it and review it. After that, make sure at least one other person reviews it before publishing to capture anything you may be missing.

“Writing and editing requires two different ways of thinking. If you try to do both at the same time, you probably won’t be doing as well as you could. “- Joshua Nite @NiteWrites Click to chirp

# 9: Spice up your findings

Finally, in conclusion, at the end of the day, at the end … there are many ways to draw a conclusion, and most of them are (again) high school detainees. The same idea that you should not introduce new information in the end, but just run the points already made again.

Fortunately, we no longer write five-paragraph essays and the conclusion may be more than an awkward summary. In fact, it is imperative for marketing to make every conclusion a launch pad, a call to action that forces the reader to take the next step. Bland, the conclusions of the book do not do this work.

Win a blank screen

If you’re anxious about this blank screen and its estimated blinking cursor, you’ll first let go of some of the bias that must be in writing a business. It turns out that B2B buyers are real people and they would read something more personal and expressive than something rigid and book-based. My tenth tip: Allow yourself to write as you speak, and you are more likely to make a human connection with your reader.

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