Is Anyone Reading What You’re Writing?

“Easy reading is damn hard writing.” – Anonymous

I wrote this before the COVID-19 s**t storm hit, and have struggled with whether to revise or toss it. Who needs more crap to sift through when we’re focused on staying afloat?

But one of the ways I cope with anxiety is by being productive. So I’m posting it – not just to have something to do, but because it’s {sort of} relevant.

Now more than ever, the content we write has to be readable.

Some of my colleagues have said they’re using stay-at-home time to work on their businesses versus in them. They’re planning to spruce up their websites. Draft blogs or social posts. Create and market new ways to support clients and generate income.

In the midst of the current chaos, writing readable marketing content is a must-do.

It’s got to be engaging, informative AND accessible.

You need to make it easy for people of all knowledge levels to understand.

This isn’t a piece of cake. I write every day, and it can be tough for me to write readable content. I’m betting it can be torturous for business owners who don’t do it for a living or who panic at the sight of a blank page.

SO – here are five quick tips for making your marketing content more relatable:

  1. Simple words, short sentences. Ditch the thesaurus and focus on choosing words that inform, rather than impress {or worse, intimidate}. Keep sentences and paragraphs short and punchy {think bullet points!}
  2. Make headlines meaningful. Catchy headlines have their place, but relying too often on cryptic or misleading headlines can chip away at your readers’ trust. A meaningful headline relates to your content and invites the reader in by letting them know what they can expect.
  3. Get to the point. Seriously, people – no one wants to scroll. Longwinded posts {unless there’s a really good reason} can lead to boredom. And bored readers will jump ship.
  4. Avoid keyword overload. The debate rages on about seeding content with keywords to boost SEO. But one thing I know for sure: using too many is guaranteed to make your writing unreadable.
  5. Give your audience what they want. Authors who understand their readers often stick to the formula that made them successful. Remember: it’s not about you. No matter what the “experts” say, if you’re not writing something your audience wants to read, you’re wasting your time.