A Quick Note About the History of Labor Day That You May Not Realize …

This plaque appears on the memorial statue erected where Samuel Fielden was speaking when the riot broke out.

The first Monday of September is upon us, which means that it is Labor Day in the United States (and Labour Day in Canada).

Have you ever wondered why North America celebrates Labor Day in September, while many parts of the rest of the world celebrate International Workers’ Day on the first day of May?

[ Continue Reading... ]

The 7 Things Writers Need to Make a Living

image of colorful writer's desk

If you’re a writer, you might have heard this most of your life.

People don’t make a living writing. You should find something practical to do with your life.

Smart, capable writers grimly pass around war stories on Facebook. Penny-a-word assignments, clients who don’t pay, disdain for our craft, and disrespect for our profession.

And yet.

[ Continue Reading... ]

Two Important Announcements for Writers

First, you may have seen yesterday the abrupt announcement that Google is, at least for the moment, discontinuing their Authorship functionality for search results and webmaster tools.

For those in our Authority community, as well as those in our Certified Content Marketer program, we’ll be holding a special live Q&A session with Brian Clark on what this means for web writers as we move forward. Just log in to your Member Dashboard to find out how to attend. You’ll also get your usual Tuesday email with all of the instructions.

And secondly, if you aren’t in one of those programs yet, the window is closing to join the Certified Content Marketer program at 5:00 PM Pacific time today.

If you’re a professional writer who could use more assignments, better pay, and the best shot at the most interesting, rewarding projects, it’s well worth your time to check the program out.

Grab all the details here — and remember, the deadline to enter is 5:00 PM today.

(And Authority members, don’t forget — make sure you’re logged in to your account in order to get your preferred pricing on the program.)

Update: As promised, the Certification program is now closed to new applicants. But you may be interested in joining Authority, our community of web writers and marketers. We offer a wealth of information, advice, and support, with fresh exclusive content nearly every month of the year.

Learn more about Authority here.

How to Earn $250 Per Hour As a Freelance Writer

fingers in motion typing fast on a keyboard

How sweet it would be to earn $250 per hour — as a writer, no less.

Sounds like a crazy dream, right?

It’s kind of like your dream to win America’s Got Talent with your nose whistling routine: Fun to think about, but it ain’t gonna happen.

Well, I’m going to risk your snorts of disbelief by telling you $250 per hour is the average rate I earn with any type of writing I do, whether it’s copywriting, content writing, or journalism.

I’m not special (though my mom thinks so). My writing skills are good, but not Donna Tartt good.

And as you’ll see below, I don’t actually charge $250 per hour, which would cause prospects to run screaming from me like I had the plague.

[ Continue Reading... ]

Save $100 on SMX East in New York

SMX East logo

Search Marketing Expo is the world’s largest search engine marketing conference, and this fall SMX East will take place in the nation’s most populous city.

And if you’re planning on heading to New York City for SMX East (September 30 – October 2), we’ve got a way for you to save $100.

Just use the code smx100copy at checkout to save $100.

[ Continue Reading... ]

Clueless About Technical Writing? Get Started With These Essential Tips

drawing of a man scratching his head while reading a book on a solid teal background

Technical writing is like copywriting’s old, boring uncle.

In the communicative garden party that is online content, Copywriting gets everyone a drink and socializes, while Technical Writing runs the grill and feeds all the guests.

Copywriters may think technical writing is simple, but it actually presents a number of challenges unique to the discipline.

If you receive a technical writing assignment, will you know how to handle it?

[ Continue Reading... ]

An Internet Marketing Education in 16 Ebooks and 20 Emails. No Charge.

image of Albert Einstein

Want to discover the smartest ways to mix social media, content marketing, and SEO for lead generation?

Want to convert those leads to customers and clients?

We’ve got you covered with Internet Marketing for Smart People. And there’s absolutely no charge.

These 16 high-impact ebooks plus our 20-installment email course deliver the techniques and strategies you need to know to become a much smarter marketer online.

Find out more and sign up (free) right here.

4 Simple Steps to Writing a Blog Post That Floods Your Inbox with Inquiries

a row of mailboxes, the largest one is bright yellow with a painted smiley face

Are your blog posts helping you win clients?

Blogging helps boost your authority, drive relevant traffic, and generate leads.

But are your blog posts working for your business?

Although business blogging is a longterm strategy, you can employ a few smart tactics to one single post in order to generate meaningful leads.

Not just one lead. But a handful or more of quality leads.

[ Continue Reading... ]

3 Lessons Learned From a Titan of Copywriting

typewriter centered on a desk with a telephone and pad of paper and pen

I was on the phone earlier this week with copywriting legend John Carlton and we were ranting about all sorts of topics.

(You know, like you do when you’re on the phone with John Carlton.)

He made the observation that the next “big thing” in marketing may not be in the areas of whiz-bang technology, but rather in the blocking and tackling techniques of adept career direct marketers.



That’s not to say that technology won’t continue to move at the speed of light. But certain methods just don’t change.

Great writing still rules. As they say here at Copyblogger, The writer runs this show. And those who spend more time storytelling and less time figuring out the next big “Ninja technique” will be the winners for the long haul.



Ninja techniques create revenue events. Great copy and creative approaches create businesses.

[ Continue Reading... ]

New Book Excerpt: Keep It Simple, But Not Simplistic

blue sky with white clouds, waves crashing on a beach, and a road winding through mountains

The following is an excerpt from Everybody Writes: Your Go-To Guide to Creating Ridiculously Good Content, coming this fall from Ann Handley and Wiley Publishing. More about Ann’s new book and some sweet free prizes below.

Any fool can make something complicated. It takes a genius to make it simple. ~ Woody Guthrie

Business, like life, can be complicated.

Products can be intricate and concepts may seem impenetrable. But good content deconstructs the complex to make it easily understood. It sheds the corporate Frankenspeak. It conveys ideas in concise, economic, human, and accessible terms.

A bit of wisdom from my journalism days: No one will ever complain that you’ve made things too simple to understand.

Of course, simple does not equal dumbed down.

[ Continue Reading... ]