7 Sharp Writing and Marketing Links

The Lede | copyblogger.com

This week on The Lede:

  • David Ogilvy on writing
  • A 7-step social media marketing strategy
  • David Mamet’s legendary “storytelling 101″ memo
  • What to do when you don’t feel like working

If you want more useful links than the seven we highlight here every week, follow @copyblogger on Twitter.


How to Write, by David Ogilvy
On September 7, 1982, Mr. Ogilvy distributed this short and powerful list to the employees of Ogilvy & Mather. Writing was central to the agency’s success, and — through this memo — he mandated that all should work earnestly to improve their craft. Almost 30 years after it was penned, his advice is indispensable. The entire Internet is driven by copy. The writer runs this show.


How Apple Listens to its Customers
Mythbusters, indeed. Mr. Denning deals a death blow to the prevailing legend that Apple does only what it wants, customers be damned. Was Steve Jobs (and Apple) a stone-cold gambler, creating beautiful products from instinct? Or, was he a strategic listener, culling the genius of Apple devices and software directly from the customers who love them? Copyblogger readers already know the answers to these questions …


A 7-Step Social Media Marketing Strategy
Mr. Baer offers a no-nonsense guide to creating an effective social media marketing strategy. Can you describe what your company does in 120 characters or less? What’s Your One Thing? How Will You Measure Success? He answers these questions and more, and offers a “Social Media Strategy Worksheet” at the bottom of his post to help you work through the details of your own plan.


Why Your Readers Don’t Respond to Your Call to Action
Opening with universally accessible examples from his family life, Mr. Rowse turns this impressive Google+ posting into an important lesson on that old workhorse of copywriting — the call to action. Why is your call to action not working? A large part of the answer lies in a single word …


The Google Panda Update in Plain English
If you think that headline has something to do with Google donating cash to various animal relief funds around the world, this one’s for you. Hell, even if you’re a pro in the SEO business, you’ll get a lesson in the simple communication of technical ideas to normal people. And, most importantly, this infographic will assist in the understanding of the Google update for content publishers everywhere.


What to Do When You Don’t Feel Like Doing the Work
A perfect little Saturday morning read from Mr. Godin. Every smart startup is a media company now. Media companies create content. Therefore, you must continue doing the work, whether you feel like it or not …


David Mamet’s Master Class in Writing (in a Memo)
I’m still angry that the The Unit was cancelled almost three years ago. Yeah, let’s see: you’re a large televsion studio employing America’s greatest living dramatist, and you cancel his show before giving it any reasonable chance of gaining a foothold. Smart. Anyway, at least writers everywhere got the most valuable memo on storytelling ever written out of the deal. Do not ignore this link.

Did you miss anything on Copyblogger this week?

About the Author: Robert Bruce is Copyblogger Media’s Chief Copywriter and Resident Recluse.

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Reader Comments (14)

  1. says

    I read the post How to Write, by David Ogilvy.
    People who think well, write well only if they write and in think in English.. If the People think well in their mother languages other than English then i feel they shouldn’t write well in English..

    • says

      Vladimir Nabokov was one of the greatest writers in English and his native language was Russian, but it’s certainly true that writing in English as one’s second language is very challenging. Fortunately, businesses can be built on the web to serve customers everywhere, not just English-speaking ones.

      • says

        I accept your point “Businesses can be built on the web to serve customers everywhere” But their promotion language is English. Can you tell me how many businesses (like Copyblogger Media) on the web have their websites in different languages as like English. Many of the businesses have provide voice support in different languages but their website is in English. It seems they wanted to serve the customers who know English.

        Is copyblogger media have their website in Chinese and Hindi ( major populated countries nearly 2.5 billion) to serve people?

  2. Archan Mehta says

    Well, Sonia that’s a great point, but you also need to consider Joseph Brodsky and scores of other writers. They don’t necessarily write best in the mother tongue, although a lot of them work well exclusively in their mother tongue. The problem is, really, that English is the lingua franca, that is, the international language of trade and commerce. With one dominant language, other languages tend to get the step-motherly treatment. English is Cinderella and a lot of parents in developing nations want to send their children only to english-medium schools. Parents realise that in order to join the swelling ranks of the global elite, a knowledge of English is a must. In the event, mother tongues tend to fall by the wayside or receive little or no importance. I look forward to the day when people feel as comfortable with their native tongues as they do with English and that their works are not just read as english translations. We are losing out on a great amount of the world’s diversity when we emphasize the importance of only the English language. By the way, this is a great post by Robert, as usual, and the links are much appreciated. Thanks so much. Cheers.

  3. says

    I read the article you recommend by Mamet. Although it is remarkably poorly written, it does communicate some interesting ideas about drama and writing for audiences.

    Ogilvy’s list is obviously written by a businessman and not a writer. Good writers do a number of the things he mandates, but several of his suggestions are ludicrous.

    Thanks for posting the list!

  4. says

    If you think that an English-language website is the only way to go, take a look at this post. http://www.copyblogger.com/global-marketing/ There are some very interesting opportunities in other languages.

    We don’t have the cultural or language abilities to run Copyblogger Media in Hindi or Chinese, but that just means there’s an opportunity for a smart collection of folks to create a similar business in those markets. Suresh, maybe you should be marketing to folks closer to home and become an affiliate for our stuff. :)

    • says


      From your words “businesses can be built on the web to serve customers everywhere” to achieve this goal, I think having a website in English is important. Without having a website in English-language we cant serve the customers globally even though we had number of cultural websites in Hindi, Chinese, Korean ,etc.

      Nowadays without English global marketing is very complicated.


  5. says

    I’d like to add one. Chapter 1 – The Ten Rules of Effective Language from Dr. Frank Luntz’s “Words That Work.” Regardless of what you think of his politics, those 30+ pages are worth the price of the whole book. A must read for anyone who trades in words and communication.

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