We Hate Weak Verbs.

Posted By on April 25, 2013

We do not want to get rid of them. Or even to kill them. We want to eviscerate, smother, incinerate, explode, poison, cremate, or run them through with our very sharp pens.

Good headlines take time and effort

Posted By on April 20, 2013

Take it from an advertising copywriter: the first headline you write is rarely the best you can do. Brainstorm a list of options without judgment, and don’t pick the one you’re going to use till the end. If you have time, set the list aside for a while and come back to it with fresh […]

Good grammar pays off in higher pay

Posted By on December 16, 2012

Good grammar isn’t just a smart choice, it’s a better pay check. You may not care now if you don’t know the difference between “you’re” and “your” but you certainly will when you realize that statistics prove professionals with better grammar are more likely to be promoted to higher positions. You could be a contender […]

Blogging is not bloviating

Posted By on December 9, 2012

Keep blog posts short and on point. Deal with one topic per post. Encourage people to click past the jump point by telling them something that’s new or not widely known.

Customer Testimonials Should Look Real, Not Fake

Posted By on December 2, 2012

Creative Briefs

Posted By on November 25, 2012

Do you wonder why assignments to creative people often run amok? Build the sturdy box called a creative brief to corral wild and woolly writers and art directors so they can deliver on-target work. Boil down the key selling proposition—what you most want to convey—into a single message. Creatives will kiss your feet, and you’ll […]

Effective Emails

Posted By on November 18, 2012

Make emails more effective by dealing with only one subject per email. Sum up the main point of the email in the subject line.

Dangling participles

Posted By on November 11, 2012

Dangling participles are the curse of writers and comic relief for editors. Usually they happen when a writer forgets what a participle is qualifying. “Waiting in line at the grocery store, the eggs fell off the shopping cart and splattered the woman behind me.” This sentence literally means that the eggs were waiting in line […]

Headlines work in partnership with visuals

Posted By on October 31, 2012

You may be surprised to know that headlines are lazy. They often lie dank and listless without an interesting visual. Take it from Cynthia, a longtime ad agency creative director: almost any headline can be saved with a great image. Select an interesting photo or illustration that adds information to the headline and doesn’t just […]

Short is better than long, unless long is better than short

Posted By on October 30, 2012

I’ve seen plenty of great three-word headlines, and I’ve seen three-line headlines that knocked my socks off. Good headlines can be any length, as long as they speak to readers and pull them in. A short headline is revered by creative directors the world over, but a long headline can often provide a compelling thought […]