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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The Decline and Fall of The Great Gate

Image of Victorian Hang Glider

For as long as many generations could remember, The Great Gate stood in the center of The Great City.

It was an ominous and magnificent structure, one that the people looked to for a constant supply of wonder, enlightenment, and joy.

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How to Use Persuasive Words

I’m glad you are here.

Because I’m excited to share a quick bit of free advice with you that will instantly make you a more persuasive writer.

It’s the new edition of The Lede.

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What to Do When You’re Sick of Your Blog

Let’s talk about your blog.

You might just have mentally winced — blogs can be a painful topic.

You know you should have one, because everyone tells you so. You know you should write blog posts on a fairly consistent basis. And you know you should publish regularly too.

But you don’t.

Just thinking about blogging makes you cringe.

You’re not alone. A lot of business owners feel the same way, and for three good reasons:

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Why the New Rainmaker is a Digital Media Producer

Back in the day, the Big Dream of any creator involved striking a deal with a name like Random House, Warner Brothers, or Atlantic Records.

Signing a deal with one of those immortal entities was considered the gold ring, the opening of the only door to independence, respect, and success in media and entertainment.

Then, in the course of less than twenty years, the Internet obliterated those power structures, leaving creators of all kinds — for better or worse — holding their futures in their own hands.

That game hasn’t just changed. It’s now an entirely new and different game.

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