I’ll say this again for the 847th time… you don’t have to be the world’s greatest writer to put out interesting content that people will appreciate! When it comes to writing blogs or social media posts, the most important thing is that you have a point of view.
Your voice, your thought process, your communication style – these things are all unique! When you share your knowledge, opinions, and ideas with the world, people with similar passions and interests will gravitate to you.
We know you’ve got great things to say, now here are a few ways to kick your writing up to the next level…
Don't Post Dry Toast
Say this with me again… Don’t post dry toast! It rhymes, it’s catchy, and it’s easy to remember. But what does it mean?
It means stop being boring!
Blog posts, Facebook posts, tweets… all of these things are consumed by your audience. And you know as well as I do, no one gets excited about eating dry toast. Also, no one wants to share dry toast with their friends, family, and colleagues.
Think of your content as a delicious side dish being brought to a potluck dinner. Sure, you could just boil pasta and drop it in a bowl… this is technically food. But what if you tossed it with a little butter and garlic? Or maybe you chop up some chicken and veggies to add in. Are you hungry yet? So is your audience!
You may have the greatest single piece of advice ever to be shared on the world-wide web, but if you don’t slather a little butter and jam on it, no one is going to care.
It’s 100% fine to start with dry toast (or boiled pasta) when you’re first getting your ideas down on paper. But once you’ve got the basics, go back and give it some flair. Use a thesaurus to mix up your vernacular, add a little bit of humor, and make sure you always come across relatable and approachable.
Check for Spelling, Grammar, and General Readability
Now, I recognize that this is not as big of a deal to some people as it is to me. I was working on some content the other day, trying to get it precise, and my husband says to me, “You know grammar is dead, right?” A single tear drop rolled down my cheek – it doesn’t have to be that way!
The truth is, social media is the antithesis of formal writing, but this doesn’t mean it should be sloppy or difficult to read. For me, personally, if I’m looking to consume content, I can tell in the first paragraph whether or not I’m going to stick around based on how it’s written. (In my defense, I had an amazing communications professor my first year of college who drilled all those grammar rules deep into my brain.)
The other part of this is readability. Here’s my best advice: write something, walk away, then come back later and read it out loud. Don’t practice it in your head first – your brain can make adjustments on the fly. You want to get a feel for how your audience will read your words. If you’re stumbling or struggling to make sense of what you meant to say, so will they.
If this is not your specialty, there are plenty of copy editors out there who can give your content a once-over before it goes out. Or maybe consider having someone ghostwrite blogs for you – your ideas, their words!
Here are a few resources that I rely on every single day:
Dictionary.com – This is obvious, right? Another way to get your spelling on point is to write your content in Microsoft Word, then transfer it to your social media site.
Thesaurus.com – We tend to attach ourselves to our favorite adjectives or keywords and then repeat them over and over and over… and over. Swapping out repeated words can instantly make your writing more interesting!
TitleCapitalization.com – This is a personal fave. For some reason, I can never remember whether 'for' gets capitalized in a title or not. This site makes it so simple – just type in your title (or subtitle) and voila!
MLA Formatting and Style Guide – Okay, this one is a little more advanced (and possibly overwhelming if you’re not quite the grammar aficionado that I am.) However, if you’d like to brush up on Oxford commas, punctuation patterns, and whether or not the period goes inside the quotation marks or not, this is the place to be!
You CAN take your writing to the next level. Be true to yourself. Believe in what you have to say. If you build it, they will come. (Okay, I stole that last one from a movie, but you get the point.) Leave a comment letting us know your favorite tips and tricks!
I am a working mom with a degree in Business Administration. My career passions include hunting down pesky commas and exploring the dark underbelly of Microsoft Word. I live to edit and edit to live!
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