Friday, August 29, 2014

15 tweaking (not twerking) tips for response

Good writing depends on good editing (aka tweaking), whether it's self-editing or editing by someone else who understands the audience and objective. 

If you're interested in increasing clicks, calls or visits to your store or website, try these 15 tweaking tips. If you want more detail, check out my recent article for Direct Marketing IQ.  

1.   Move your call-to-action to front and center.

2.   Keep copy short and succinct, just long enough to tell your story.

3.   Hot spots are eye magnets. Fill them with benefits.

4.   Lead with the benefit, follow with the feature.

5.   Use bullets to draw the scanner's eye.

6.   Sentence fragments and one-word sentences often communicate more effectively than 
      longer sentences. Try 'em.

7.   Start sentences with verbs--active verbs--to create reader momentum.

8.   Use numerals versus numbers written as words. Find out why here.

9.   Avoid starting sentences with the word there.

10.  Read what you write out loud.Often you can hear edits easier than you can see them.

11.  Use FIND and REPLACE to avoid overusing individual words.

12.  Give what you've written a rest before editing.  Preferably overnight.

13.  Circle punctuation marks, then consider other options for improving scannability and 

14.  Contractions can be controversial, but also conversational. Check out this infographic
       from the writers at Divine Write, titled "Contractions: When Can I Use Them?"

Last thought. Editing and proofing are different tasks. Edit first, proof last.