Why Writers Don’t Seem Hireable (and How to Get Hired)

This week, we uncovered an uncomfortable truth for many introverted writers: Great writing does not equal a great writing career. If you have your own business, you need to learn how to sell. Yes, the “s” word. But it doesn’t have to be some foreign activity that makes you feel like someone else. In fact, being yourself with the right presentation is the winning combination. A prospect needs to know more about you — and what it’s like doing business with you — before they’ll feel comfortable taking the next step. So, what more can you do to reveal those special qualities about your product or service? We have a free event next week that’ll help you out with that. Teach Your Way to Success:How Live Training Events CanIncrease Your Sales in 30 Days Wednesday, October 23, 2019 at 2:30 PM Eastern Time During our session together, you’ll learn: How […]

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In a World, Where Your Marketing Is Too Intelligent to Ignore …

You have the opportunity to help your ideal prospects with the problems they struggle with or the desires they’d like fulfilled. Progress Guide: Try This Prepare a new 7-to-10-step tutorial for your audience. Craft each step into a stand-alone piece of content. Use the sequence to create an email autoresponder or enhance your existing one. Once you have this new series, you can repurpose it into other types of content as well, such as podcast episodes or videos. Ready to go deeper? On Monday, Sonia Simone outlined The Betty Crocker Secret to Email Marketing that People Want. She expands on the value of creating the type of tutorial series I mentioned in this week’s Progress Guide. If selling makes you feel uncomfortable, you’ll like this approach. You start by “selling” your terrific, free email autoresponder. It will build trust and rapport so that down the line you can fully explain […]

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8 Elements that Make Your Next Piece of Content Even Better than Your Last

Moving on to your next piece of content — regardless of how your last one performed — is the mark of the diligent marketer. We have to keep producing, but we also want to improve and learn more about what our audiences want. Each new piece of content we create is a new opportunity to do just that. On Monday, I outlined 2 Key Factors that Distinguish Satisfying Content from Forgettable Ideas. This is a mini tutorial for polishing your content into a powerful package that gets your reader, listener, or viewer to share and subscribe, rather than hesitate and move on. On Tuesday, Brian Clark kept things rolling with 5 Easy Ways to Open Your Blog Post with a Bang. In a split second you need to show why choosing your content is the best decision a reader can make in that moment. You can mix and match the […]

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The Troubled Truth about a Certain Type of Storytelling

We all love to make predictions about the future, don’t we? Whether we think the outcome will be “good” or “bad,” we’ve got an opinion about how things will turn out … oftentimes before anything is even in motion, which means that we’re oftentimes wrong. For content creators, these are the stories we tell ourselves before we even start writing a new blog post series, recording a podcast idea, or building an online course. They’re the hopeful stories we tell that lead to initial excitement, and then sometimes disappointment. They’re the limiting stories we tell to protect ourselves from the heartbreak of failure. And they’re the stories we tell that keep us stuck. Creativity, business, life: It’s all messy, and the paths that actually lead to breakthroughs don’t appear until you take the first steps into uncertainty. In other words, you have to start with an initial plan — and […]

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What You Need, When You Need It: Vital Digital Marketing and Sales Training

Copyblogger has always been a place that encourages creativity. We want to help people have creative careers and do meaningful work every day. It’s perfectly reasonable to want to have a job where you get to be creative. But in order to make creativity a part of your job — and not just make art for the sake of making art — you need to learn to be strategic. And that’s what we merge in our courses: the freedom to be creative, with the digital marketing and sales training that helps you build an audience that builds your business. So, if you haven’t already seen the limited-time deal we have going on right now with our Best of the Best of Copyblogger Sale, check it out by clicking this button: Start Your Copyblogger Premium Education Today I’ve outlined some of the good stuff below, as well. This week on the […]

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Update Your Focus to Work Hard on the Right Things

Last week, I affirmed that “hard work is luck.” However, what if you work hard and aren’t seeing any progress or results? What if hard work just leads to you feeling disappointed and ready to give up? Before you actually do give up, it’s helpful to take a look at the activities that consume your time and attention. Why do some people who work hard succeed, and some don’t? I think those who “work hard and succeed” are open to a variety of pathways that will help them reach their goals. They are flexible and don’t have a fixed mindset about the work they should be doing or a rigid definition of success. In other words, those who “work hard but don’t succeed” might work hard on the wrong things and ignore other versions of success within reach. It’s not the most exciting truth, but we have to crawl before […]

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Join the Copyblogger Renaissance to Pursue the Career You’re Meant to Have

If you told me 10 years ago that one day I’d be taking over writing Copyblogger’s weekly newsletter from Sonia Simone, I’d have said: “In what fantasy world? I don’t know her, and she didn’t review the guest post I submitted.” (True story.) But I believe four simple words: Hard work is luck. Long story short, Sonia and I did eventually connect and have had a great working relationship for the past five years. I’m honored she passed the baton keyboard to me and I now get to talk with you every week, in addition to the other posts I write on the blog. This week, we took Monday off to observe Labor Day in the United States. On Tuesday, Brian Clark talked about why he’s returned to Copyblogger. He shared behind-the-scenes stories about the company and what we have in store going forward. For even more details, check out […]

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A Farewell and Some Advice to Keep You Moving Forward

Well, our big news this week is that I’m going to be moving to a more solo career. The ultra capable Darrell Vesterfelt will be taking over my partnership interest in Copyblogger Media. It’s a huge step for all of us, but it also feels like a natural evolution. It helps a lot that I think Darrell is going to crush it. 🙂 But Copyblogger has never been about only one person. (OK, apart from those very early days when Brian kept it all afloat himself.) And we still have advice and strategies for you! On Monday, Stefanie Flaxman helped us through a painful moment — when a prospect chooses a competitor over our solution. And she explores the ways we can build trust in our prospects, becoming a complete package that they prefer over any other option. On Tuesday, Robert Bruce talked about a brutal problem that writers face […]

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Changes You Can Make in 10 Minutes for Exceptionally Effective Copy

Sure, professional writers spend a lot of time on our craft. As we should. But it’s also nice to have a few fast tweaks to make your content and copy a lot more effective. This week, we offered three ways to make your persuasive writing work a lot better … without spending a zillion more hours on it. In fact, you can implement all three of these tweaks in about 10 minutes, every time you publish. (You can also spend a little more time and really make them sing … it’s up to you.) On Monday, Stefanie Flaxman shared a foundational technique every content marketer should be using — strategically managing your internal content links. It seems simple (and it is), but it has outsized benefits for the time you put in. Typical time investment: 3 minutesPayoff: Improved authority, significantly better audience experience, SEO benefits On Tuesday, Brian Clark reminded […]

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When It’s Time to Get Serious about Your Content and Copywriting

We write a lot about the importance of creativity in content marketing. Generic, flavorless content has very little chance of getting noticed in the sea of content that’s generated every day. Pros know that creativity needs to be harnessed to professional discipline. Creative work is work, and it calls for a serious mindset. And when your creative work is directly tied to a company’s revenue (and the grocery bills and mortgages of everyone who works for that company), there’s no time for self-indulgence. This week, we offered three posts about the power of creative discipline. On Monday, Stefanie Flaxman talked about how people perceive the writing life, and what it’s actually like. While from the outside, professional writers sometimes look a little fuzzy, working writers know what it’s like to keep wrestling with a piece when everyone else has gone off to hit Happy Hour. On Tuesday, Beth Hayden shared […]

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The Copyblogger Guide to Managing Your Professional Overwhelm

Overwhelmed? Anxious? Stressed out? Yeah, there’s a lot of that going around. Daily life is difficult enough. And when you layer business and marketing challenges on top of that, it can seem really inviting to stay in bed and watch cartoons for, say, about a month. Since that’s not an option for most of us, we have several solutions for your creative, marketing, and business anxieties. There are a lot of problems we can’t help you with, but we can try to take marketing worries off of your personal “scary” list. This week I’m switching things up a bit, recapping our posts in reverse order to get more and more specific about how you can Do All the Things even when you’re overwhelmed. On Wednesday, I sent a shout-out to all of my fellow business owners (and other humans) who are anxious, stressed, and freaked out. No matter how intense […]

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Not Getting Business Results? Try These Content Tips from Professional Artists

A lot of people think that artists create work when they feel inspired, spending the rest of their time drinking tiny coffees in quaint cafés, or something similarly poetic. Nope. Real artists are craftspeople first. They work in a disciplined, methodical way (although that method can vary hugely from person to person), and they don’t wait around for inspiration. This week, we offered three “serious artist” approaches to your content production. Try these out to become both more creative and more productive — without letting your blog or podcast take every minute of your life. On Monday, Stefanie Flaxman talked about the value of establishing editorial standards for your content. It might not sound sexy at first. (Unless you’re us, because we’re weird.) But pinning these down will let you serve your audience better, focus your content authority with both audiences and search engines, and can even help reduce writer’s […]

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Real-World Advice for Rocking Your Career as a Freelance Writer

The life of a freelance writer is always intense. (That line cheerfully ripped off and mangled from the ’80s cult film Repo Man.) You’re balancing craft, strategy, your clients’ business interests, your own business interests, and maybe even a little bit of art thrown in there. We love freelance business writers, and we strive to give you lots of resources that make you more effective. (Our advice applies to writers working for companies as well, and many marketing writers move back and forth between freelancing and in-house roles.) On Monday, Stefanie Flaxman gave 30 steps to becoming an in-demand freelance writer. No, it’s not “3 steps” or “5 steps,” because building a successful freelance business is complicated. But each of these steps is well within your power. You can use this post as a road map for staying on track to a rewarding and lucrative career. On Tuesday, Nick Usborne […]

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How to Gain Audience Trust by … Actually Being Trustworthy

Audience trust is a huge factor in business success. If people think you’ll do what you say you will, they’re far more likely to buy from you. Call us crazy, but around here, we like to build that trust by actually being trustworthy. This week, we have recommendations on how you can improve audience trust (and the strong conversion that follows) by being transparent and reliable. On Monday, Stefanie Flaxman showed us three copywriting fumbles that will weaken your business results. She uses examples from hapless Rick, who’s trying to pitch meditation services at the local natural foods grocery. Learn better persuasion skills, Rick! On Tuesday, Loryn Cole shared how to present data truthfully and meaningfully, without introducing the errors that can unintentionally mislead. Data has tremendous persuasive power, so you want to make absolutely sure you’re using it ethically. And on Wednesday, I talked about how to use that […]

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17 Perceptive Ways to Persuade with Modern Copywriting

Fads and platforms come and go, but one fact endures: Copywriting is the mechanism that allows businesses to make money online. Which means that if online sales matter to your business, copywriting is a really smart place to invest your time and attention. This week, we offered 17 different ways you can boost the effectiveness of your copy for better business results. On Monday, Brian Clark covered the five distinct types of prospects we attract with content marketing, and how to speak to each of them in order to further a business relationship. This advice is more nuanced than the usual “never sell on your blog” or “always sell on your blog” … and it works a lot better than either extreme. On Tuesday, Stefanie Flaxman dived deep into eight different business-building calls to action you can use in your copy and content. If you’ve struggled with giving your content […]

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Cultivate Your Independence with Smart Strategy and Thoughtful Action

It’s Independence Day in the U.S.! Wherever you live, this week we invite you to take thoughtful action that promotes your own independence. On Monday, Stefanie Flaxman outlined a plan you can follow to complete a project that matters to you. It might be an ebook, a course, cornerstone content for your website, or anything else that’s seemed a little intimidating. It can be comfortable to stick with the daily content grind. But a bigger, more ambitious project is often the path to your most powerful growth. If you want some company while you work on yours, we’ll be planning out our milestones, setting our deadlines, and tracking our progress as a group inside the Killers and Poets Facebook group. Join us if you’d like some motivation and accountability to get that project finished! On Tuesday, Brian Clark highlighted a key to keeping your content and copy focused on what […]

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Amplify Your Content Production … and Have Fun While You’re At It

Publishing a good volume of excellent content can be a tough game. And if you don’t keep it fun, you’re never going to stick with it. In the words of 1930s heavyweight champion Primo Carnera, you want to look for that elusive balance: “So many money, so many fun.” This week, we have advice on making your content and production processes more fun — without sacrificing the “so many money” part. On Monday, Stefanie Flaxman gave us four steps to working steadily on smaller, satisfying projects rather than making ourselves miserable with lofty goals that never get met. On Tuesday, Karine Bengualid made her Copyblogger debut sharing why B2B marketing needs to be “funner,” and how to make that happen without tipping over into hot-mess territory. And on Wednesday, just for fun, I talked about when to be repetitive, redundant, and say the same thing twice. The Copyblogger FM episode […]

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Smart Choices that Lead to Impressive Content and Copywriting Results

“It is our choices, Harry, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.” – J.K. Rowling That Albus Dumbledore was a pretty wise fellow. And you’ve probably experienced that some choices you make accumulate into rich, productive experiences … and others tend to roll up into a doughy ball of disappointment. There are a million ways to write copy and content — but the choices you make and the priorities you set will determine the results you see. This week was all about how to make the smartest possible choices when you sit down to write. On Monday, Stefanie Flaxman uncovered the magic of a micro audience. She highlights the choice of action over perfectionism, and making the decision to treat a small audience as a priority, even before you see the big wins that will come when that audience grows. On Tuesday, Loryn Cole explored the […]

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For Courageous Content Creators Who Want to Do Epic Work

When I started blogging, a little over 10 years ago, one of my then-colleagues mentioned that she “didn’t have the software to read blogs.” Today, the landscape is a little different. Blogs, podcasts, YouTube channels, and other content formats are being consumed at an astonishing rate — and an equally astonishing volume of new content is being generated to fill that demand. The content landscape isn’t some mythical blue ocean lacking in competition. It’s a teeming jungle — with plenty to eat, and plenty that wants to eat you. To make it in the content jungle, you need courage. The courage to stand out, the courage to get real about your values, and the courage to create over the long haul. This week, we’ve got fuel for your content courage. One reason creativity and self-expression are difficult is that we’re afraid someone will be mean to us over what we […]

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38 Ways to Boost Your Content Confidence … Every Time You Publish

The life of a content marketer is always intense. The deadlines, the flow of ideas, the juggling of writing, promotion, and business needs. To keep producing, you need to protect your content confidence. And this week, we shared 38 ways to do that. On Monday, Stefanie Flaxman outlined 12 of the triple-checks we do at Copyblogger to make sure that every post goes into the world making an excellent impression. (I messed up #5 once and I was mortified. If only I’d had Stefanie’s checklist in front of me!) On Tuesday, Pamela Wilson showed us how to take a just-okay image and crop it so it tells a compelling story — and increases the immediate impact of your content. Smart images will help your good writing get the shares and attention it deserves. And on Wednesday, I talked about 10 ways to fall in love with your blog (or podcast, […]

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