5 Costly Mistakes in Business Writing

We feel your pain. (Photo: dotshock)

For most people, writing is a challenge.

Even if you’re an expert on the topic you’re covering, you’ll still have to sit down, put your thoughts on paper, refine your ideas, rewrite, edit, and repeat the process.

Aack! No wonder so many people dislike writing and suffer from writer’s block—the entire writing process can be difficult. Continue reading “5 Costly Mistakes in Business Writing”

4 Ways to Remove Hype From Your Marketing Campaign

Hype is easy to spot, and your customers don’t trust it. (Photo: Dean Drobot)

Some people think that sales and marketing are largely about hype. They think it’s all about loud self-promotion, boasting, and exaggerated claims.

Sure, there’s a place for being excited and passionate about your products and services, but you don’t want to over-promise and under-deliver.

Most prospects and customers don’t trust hype, which is why relying on it can damage your credibility and brand. One reason for this is that hype is easy to spot and the motives are transparent, which can quickly cause someone’s guard to go up. If you’ve ever been hassled by a high-pressure salesperson, then you already know the feeling.

Here are some writing tips that can help you remove hype from your marketing. Continue reading “4 Ways to Remove Hype From Your Marketing Campaign”

Why Avoiding Clichés in Business Writing Is So Important

The only time you should write "Let's get all of our ducks in a row" is when you are literally putting your ducks in a row. (Photo: Kelly Nelson)
The only time you should write “Let’s get all of our ducks in a row” is when you are literally putting your ducks in a row. (Photo: Kelly Nelson)

If you’ve been relying on the same overused phrases in your business reports, it’s time to start hitting the “Delete” key.

Clichés are rampant in the business world. We hear them, we speak them, and we write them.

Why? Because clichés make use of metaphors or images—often in a clever way—so that people quickly understand.

The truth is, clichés might have been fresh and meaningful once. However, they are not fresh now, and they can muddy your points. If you want to write business copy that is powerful and effective, the first rule is: Go simple. Continue reading “Why Avoiding Clichés in Business Writing Is So Important”

Absolute Adjectives: Are You Guilty of This Totally Unique Problem?

Something is either unique or it isn't. "Totally" is a waste of awning space. (Photo: Google Maps)
Something either is unique or it isn’t. “Totally” adds nothing. (Photo: Google Maps)

Writers, when you use an absolute adjective like always or never in a sentence, you’re making the claim that there are no exceptions.

Do you know what that means? It means that in a way, you’re challenging your audience to prove the statement to the contrary.

Whoa! Conflict as a result of one little adjective? Continue reading “Absolute Adjectives: Are You Guilty of This Totally Unique Problem?”