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The 4 Key Don’ts of Content Writing You Need to Know

Remember these “Don’ts” When Writing Content For Your Business


woman-writing-content-on-laptopEven the most seasoned content writer needs to brush up on the do’s and don’ts of good content writing. After all, the world of content marketing is pretty hard to keep up with sometimes. I’m not claiming to know it all, but I do know that one of the most important aspects of my job as a content writer is to establish an understanding between me and my readers.

The truth is you don’t have to be a professional content writer to publish quality content for your website. With that said, let’s cover the don’ts (and subsequent do’s) of content writing that generate effective results.

Important Keys To Follow

  1. Don’t make assumptions about what your audience knows.
  2. My college writing professor was a man of few words, but he continuously stressed one point that I’ll never forget:

    Never make assumptions about someone’s knowledge over a subject. Know who you’re talking to.

    Always write for your intended audience. At the very least, use your judgement when it comes to how you explain certain elements within your content. For instance, a lot of my clients are in the legal and dental industry. This means that I’m often writing content for their clients who, more likely than not, are pretty limited with their knowledge on these subjects. Unless my writing is specifically targeting dental and legal professionals, I’m not going to shroud my content with jargon like “advanced periodontitis” and “implied warranty” without adding a little background information. Sometimes this jargon is necessary for creating industry specific content, but make it simple for your audience to understand by linking them to another site for further explanation. If you’re not linking, then include a sentence or two of background information so you don’t lose your audience in the first paragraph.

  3. Don’t ignore your audience’s needs.
  4. Remember, your audience is coming to you because they’re in need of a service.They want answers to their questions. Writing content for the sake of writing content won’t increase your website’s traffic – if anything, you’re just wasting your time. Without a clear purpose, no one will want to read through your content because it just does nothing for them.

    This means you’re going to have to do some serious engaging to learn what your audience wants/needs to know. Ask questions. Take surveys. Engage on your social media accounts. You’d be surprised at how much your prospective clients want to know but simply can’t find the right avenue to find answers to their questions. Analyze your website’s performance and look at what pages are getting the most hits. If you can’t do this on your own, recruit a marketing professional who can do it for you (and can go more in depth with analyzing your web performance).

  5. Don’t create such difficult content.
  6. shakespeare-quoteGood ole’ Shakespeare said it himself:
    “Wisely and show. They that stumble run fast.”

    Shakespeare may be one of the greatest writers of all time, but the dude’s pretty complicated for today’s on-the-go reader to understand.

    Simplicity goes a long way when it comes to reaching your audience. When writing content, incorporate terms such as:

    • How to
    • Ways You Can
    • Reasons Why/How

    As a reader, I would want to read through articles that focus on these terms because they promote solutions.

    Want to test how difficult your content reads? Hemingway Editor is a pretty cool tool to help keep your writing simple. This app tests your content’s level of readability. Let’s give it a try:

    heminway-editor-for-content
  7. Don’t forget to make a connection.
  8. In writing, much like in life, we strive to make connections.

    I’m not trying to get all philosophical here, but establishing a connection with your reader really does go a long way when writing memorable content.

    Anyone can write a few paragraphs of content in hopes of converting your audience into potential clients. Here’s a little secret, though: your audience appreciates human interaction. What I mean by this is that it’s hard for them to connect with robotic content. Even Apple has realized this and is finding ways to make Siri, its resident go-to for voice activated commands, sound more human. If they can do that, you can definitely make your content sound a little more personable.

    Here’s another little secret: humans have emotions. Tap into them when writing, as readers are known to react more effectively via emotionally driven content.

    For starters, you can establish a connection by telling a story (a simple story–see point #3). This has the power to leave a lasting impression on them. As a reader desperately looking for answers, I want the assurance that I am not alone in my arduous search, and writing relatable, emotionally driven content is your golden ticket to doing so.

Need Some Help Writing Content? We’ve Got Your Back.

All in all, there are number of elements to consider when writing content that will attract views on your website. You may not gain a huge following overnight (or maybe you will, depending on the tactics you use to achieve this level of internet “cred”) but that’s perfectly normal. Content marketing (and online marketing as a whole, really) is a long term effort. As long as you know what you should (or in this case, shouldn’t) be doing, you’re well on your way to building your company’s brand via awesome content.

Need some more tips on how to create long-lasting content for your company’s website? Subscribe to Clicc Media’s Content Marketing blogs for helpful tips to get you started and continue your content growth.

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