FIVE TIPS ON HOW TO WRITE AN ARTICLE IN UNDER 30 MINUTES

dog-time-perception-2As a freelancer, I get paid for my time. Therefore, it makes sense to use that time efficiently. Whether I am writing an article for a client who has given me the topic or writing one on spec, I don’t want  to spend hours penning thousands of words. With a business to run, along with daily life, I try to keep an article or blog post to under 30 minutes including research. There’s no reason to sacrifice quality either. Following these tips will ensure you produce excellent content in as brief time as possible.

  • Keep it short 

Around 500 words is best. There are millions of articles and blog posts on the Internet and no matter how interesting the subject, it’s best to keep it brief. I recently wrote a 1,500-word piece for a client about Mountain Bike Tyres and believe me, even the most dedicated cyclist would have struggled to reach the end. I certainly struggled writing it. I mean, how much engaging content is there about a sphere of rubber? Keeping an article short and informative encourages a reader to read and also increases the chances of a swift call to action.

  • Bullet Points & Lists 

I love a list and, it’s been psychologically proven that most of us do, so use this to your advantage. Not only are they easier for the reader’s eye to follow but they are much simpler to write as you don’t have to connect one idea to the next. This type of article is especially good as a sales technique, as we feel comforted buying something we know is approved by others so are more likely to purchase.

  • Limit your research 

When I first started this writing malarkey, I would spend hours trawling the Internet trying to find relevant information on the subject matter. By the time I started writing, I had forgotten most of it. Give yourself a time limit and stick to it. It is tempting just to rewrite what is already out there, so I collect all the information I need in a word document, work on the structure of ideas, then close the document and write the piece in my own words.

  •  Idea List 

This is a great method if you write your own articles to submit to websites and magazines. Not only do I keep a list of whatever idea pops to mind, but I also spend five minutes researching and keep the information with the idea for later. When I’m pushed for time, I have the ideas to hand with no need for research and can churn out a quality article in around 15-20 minutes.

  • Don’t Force It 

You have an idea or a given subject matter and can’t find the right information or the words just won’t come. We’ve all been there – right? Leave it, make a cup of coffee, go for a walk, have a relaxing bath, work on something else. Let your head do the work instead of your fingers. Thinking about how to write something will give you different approaches and ideas making it much easier when you come back to it.

Following these tips will save you time without sacrificing content. You will work more efficiently and free up time, which every freelancer knows is precious.

PS I wrote this post in around 15 mins.

© Donna Hepburn 2016

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HOW TO WRITE POWERFUL COPY THAT SELLS

 

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It’s amazing how many people involved in sales and marketing do not take the time to master the art of good content writing. The basics are so simple and can make a difference to the turnover of any business. As a professional copywriter, I find the following tips invaluable:

  • Killer headlines. Headlines are important. The majority of readers will look at a headline and then decide whether to carry on, so it’s vital to grab their attention. There are various ways of doing this: either by helping with a problem, answering a question etc. The headline is a way of telling someone they need to continue reading.
  • Keep it simple. Where powerful copy is concerned, less is more. Good content gives the reader all the information they need using minimal words.
  • Use keywords. To maximise the power of any online copy, you need to integrate keywords throughout. Especially in the title, so the copy can easily be found on search engines.
  • Keep a swipe file. Swipe files are lists of sales content which have produced results. Take the information and adapt it to your own writing needs. A swipe file can be a fantastic source of inspiration for any copywriter or blogger.
  • Stand out. Highlight one particular product/service. Focus on why you are different or what you can do better than your competitor. What is your USP? Is it your service, reliability? What can you offer that no-one else can?
  • Focus on benefits. Sell the benefits, not the features. Potential clients are not interested in the features of your product/services unless it benefits them. Explain how you can increase production, save time/money, solve a problem etc.
  • Define your target market. It is extremely important to define your marketplace. In particular, small businesses can’t afford to target everyone so concentrate on the people most likely to buy your product/service. Write for the correct audience and suit your style accordingly.
  • Create a strong call to action. Give potential clients a reason to call immediately by presenting an incentive, a special offer, something free and a time frame in which they will receive that bonus.

If you follow these suggestions, I guarantee you will see results. Not everyone has the time or inclination to write copy so if you prefer to talk to a professional, UKContentWriter can help.

© Donna Hepburn 2016