If you’re a writer, do you find excuses not to write? You might not do it consciously. Sometimes it just happens.
Should you be writing now instead of reading this?
Maybe you should be writing but you find yourself sifting through an endless stream of tweets and status updates.
Or you should be writing but you don’t think you’ve seen the episode of House that’s just starting…
Or you should be writing but you’ve decided that you’ll do it tomorrow, when you have more time to really do it justice.
Is there a quick and easy way to write the best headlines for your content so you get more clicks?
Even a small change to the way you work could help boost the engagement potential of your articles and accelerate your overall writing speed.
In the previous post, I suggested how using a strategy of marginal gains could help you boost your writing performance.
The idea is to make small improvements to every element of the writing process. Headline writing is one of those elements.
In 2012, Bradley Wiggins won the Tour de France, while Team GB cyclists including Jason Kenny and Laura Trott bagged seven gold medals at the London Olympics.
The key to their success? A sporting strategy of marginal gains developed by David Brailsford, general manager of Team Sky and performance director of British Cycling.
What does this have to do with writing faster? Everything.
Do you find writing web copy hard? Coming up empty when it comes to thinking up traffic-pulling ideas for your web writing?
There’s nothing worse for a content writer than sitting in front of blank page, writing a sentence, then deleting it; writing another sentence, then deleting it… It’s not so much ‘writer’s block’, but a lack of workable ideas.
This can be a problem if you’ve set yourself a blog posting schedule or you need to come up with an idea, fast. But sometimes all your brain needs is a nudge.
Which is why I’ve put together this list of 57 ways to make thinking up new article ideas and writing web content easier.
It starts with what I think is the most important point…
A friend recently asked me what my blog was about. I told him that “I’m on a mission to do more in less time“.
Since I started my own business and became a dad, time is something I have much less of. Now the clock seems to tick faster. Days fly by. Weeks evaporate. Sometimes, I’m not entirely convinced that Thursdays have 24 hours in them.
I need to do more in the time that I do have.
And I think I’ve found a way.
The list post headline is Mr Reliable; a safe bet; the go-to content format when you can’t think of anything better to write.
You might hate it. Think it’s lazy and overused. Yet while the web is clogged with list posts, they continue to work.
There’s a good reason why.
Haven’t got time to write? Don’t want to write? Maybe you don’t know what to write?
I’d like to know what aspects of content creation are currently frustrating you, so we can improve our services and develop content tools to make the thinking, planning and writing processes easier and faster.
Did you know that there are 7 writing mistakes that a spell checker won’t spot?
It won’t catch correctly spelled words that are used incorrectly in a sentence.
It can’t query facts, dates or events and it will often struggle with the spelling of people and places.
A spell checker also doesn’t know whether a hyperlink works or even points to the right page.
These things require a human eye. A proofreader’s eye. Preferably two.
In terms of the structure of a news article, the classic Inverted Pyramid favoured by journalists is a process of ordering your information in order of its importance to the reader.
So your first paragraph talks about the main point; the next most important point goes into the second paragraph; the next most important point forms the basis of the third paragraph. And so on.
Using the Inverted Pyramid structure has two benefits…
Got an idea? Take action. Do it. And do it quickly.
What’s really stopping you? Fear of what people will think? Don’t worry, they’ll tell you if they don’t like it.
If you don’t try… Well, you’ll never know whether it would have worked,
And you might regret not knowing.