3 Ways to Write a Damn Good Syllable

Copyblogger chief copywriter Demian Farnworth sits at his desk straining to write a good syllable

The list of things you need to do to become a great writer is a long one.

So long in fact, most people never make it to the end of that list.

This is why most people suck at writing.

They simply give up.

Sure, the new ones are always thrilled — corybantic some may say — as they sharpen their pencils in eager expectation of jumping into those adorable writing exercises such as “Write like you talk” or “Write yourself silly!”

Then there are the entry-level axioms that culminate in “Give yourself permission to write,” a commandment that Trendall Jynweythk, professor of liberation theology at Arizona University, claims originated in a conversation between Jesus and John when the apostle was battling writer’s block after some really bad dreams.

It is all quite overwhelming advice to you, virgin writer, what with your bubbling, flooding, and exploding energy.

You just need to sit down and write!

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5 Ways to Rankle an Old-School Journalist

image of young journalist diligently writing while older journalist stands beside her looking dumbfounded

This is the first post in a series on native advertising. An introduction, if you will.

One that states from the start that there is controversy.

Why approach a series this way?

Simple: Native advertising is probably one of the least-known scalding-hot topics in the business world.

In fact, few business people can even define native advertising. And those outside of it are clueless it even exists (we’ve got the data to prove this — will share later).

Yet media research group BIA/Kelsey predicts that by 2017, brands will spend $4.57 billion on social native ads.

$4.57 billion is a lot of money.

How could there be so much enthusiasm and animosity for an ambiguous model?

Two words …

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13 Damn Good Ideas from 13 Dead Copywriters

Image of David Ogilvy with number 13

Advertising is an ancient art.

In the Babylonian sea ports, merchants hired barkers to announce the arrival of wine, spices, and fabrics.

Citizens in Greece hung “Lost” posters in hopes of being reunited with children, jewelry, or slaves.

And elaborately painted signs (billboards) sprung up throughout Pompeii to announce plays, carnivals, and races.

Surprised?

You shouldn’t be. The history of advertising is full of the tools, tactics, and strategies you — as online marketer — still use.

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Here’s How Ann Handley (the World’s First Chief Content Officer) Writes

image of Ann Handley

Want a quick and dirty way to test whether your content is compelling?

Show it to a teenager … and then answer these questions:

  • Is the teenager still reading, watching, or listening after 30 seconds? One minute? Five minutes? Fifteen? Thirty?
  • Is the teenager happy, confused, or mad?
  • Is the teenager your child?

If your own teenager is still listening after 30 minutes — and is happy about it — you created some good content.

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The Aggressive Work Ethic of Highly Creative People

image of door ready to be kicked in

Magicians. Curious bunch.

They pull furry mammals out of their hats. Levitate humans. Hide automobiles out of sight.

The great ones make a killing, jet set around the globe, and beat groupies off with a brass-tipped wand.

The not-so-great ones — the average ones — are still amazing.

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Why Your Site’s Search Rank May Be Falling (And 4 Simple Ways to Fix it)

man falling

This isn’t supposed to be happening.

Your 8-year old website with the domain registered 10 years out is getting outranked by websites less than a year old with auto-renewal on.

And you thought the age of your website meant authority.

But the problem is this: domain age alone doesn’t grant you authority, and your domain registration strategy doesn’t impact your search rankings quite like you think it might. Your site’s content and the links coming to those pages are what matters.

What’s that you say? You have quality content and quality links and you’re still dropping in search rankings?

Well then the reason is clear …

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