10 Ways To Write Better ArticlesAdvisor Perspectives
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As we age, our physical and mental skills slowly diminish. But there is one vital skill that will improve if you take the necessary steps: writing persuasively.
Content establishes credibility, adds value for your clients and gets you noticed. To establish a blog, explore the power of social media, or just share your views on topics of interest, you need to generate engaging content. Here’s my take on how to do that.
For some advisors generating great content is easy. They are naturally gifted writers. For most of us, writing is hard work. Creating a piece we are proud of is elusive.
I was not a naturally gifted writer, although I aspired to be one. Fortunately, I had excellent high school English teachers and some very patient mentors who didn’t give up on me. They helped me overcome my tendencies toward redundancy, verbosity and muddled thinking.
I have written hundreds of articles and papers over the years and derive great joy from it. I still get excited every time something I write is published.
I have developed a number of guidelines that help me when I write. These are not ironclad rules, but they create a framework that keeps me on track. I shared them recently with some colleagues and they suggested that I share them more broadly, so here they are.
- Be genuine. Write in your own voice. Don’t imitate the styles of other writers if they conflict with the natural flow of how you communicate. If you are analytical, be analytical. If you are passionate, be passionate. Don’t be contrived.
- Know what you want to say. Don’t discover your own point of view through the writing process. Know your purpose and the central thesis of your article. Your path may evolve as you write, but know where you want to end up. It helps to write your conclusion before your opening paragraph.
- Keep it short. Most industry publications are looking for between 500 and 1,200 words. Once you have finished writing your article, no matter how long it is, go back and cut out everything that isn’t essential. Make each point only once.
- Be entertaining. An article is not a term paper. Don’t be boring. Even if you are writing about a serious topic, have some fun. Take chances. Make it entertaining. Tell a story. Use humor and metaphors. Write something you would want to read.
- oose a good title. Our inboxes are flooded with publications. People screen what they read based on the title alone. Come up with an attention-getting title. Make sure it lets the reader know what you are writing about.
Read the full article here by Scott MacKillop, Advisor Perspectives