Some great writing tips today if you want to be a content writer – and even if you don’t, they’re STILL applicable! Thanks Austin!
Whenever I tell someone what I do for a living, 9 out of 10 times they give me a blank look. Unless you work for an online business, very few people actually know what a “content writer” is. A content writer or a website content writer is someone who specializes in providing relevant content for websites. If you want to write for a living or need some extra cash, this is a great job. All you need creativity, imagination, and a little bit more imagination.
Here are 5 tips on how to be a good content writer:
1) Use a thesaurus
As a content writer for a niche market, I have had to learn to say the same thing in a million different ways without sounding like I am repeating myself. A thesaurus/dictionary is your best friend: use it well and use it often. In the lottery world, describing big jackpots is almost a daily practice. The question is – just how many times can you say big (or biggest?) After exhausting every synonym of “big”, I had to get creative using descriptions such as “mouth-watering”, “jaw-dropping” and “succulent”. MORE: Improve your own writing via The B2W Writer School
2) Surf’s up!
Cyberspace is a vast galaxy of information, everyone wants to be seen and there isn’t a quality website in existence that doesn’t employ a team of writers dedicated to getting their site noticed. Surf the net, a lot. Comb through similar websites to yours and use social media to keep you in the loop on what’s happening in the world. See what’s working for others and learn from them. A good way to find out what’s interesting in your market, is using a website like Buzzsumo.com. Just enter your market, and see what’s hot and then write about it. MORE: The B2W Pinterest Boards
3) Know your market and its lingo
Make sure you know the market towards which the product or information on your website is geared. Learn the lingo. Readers and customers will relate better to your content if they feel that you are familiar with the subject in which they are interested. For example; I work for a lottery service provider. Did you know that the Europeans, Canadians, and Australians prefer the term “lotto”, while Americans prefer “lottery”? Neither did I, until I looked into it. MORE: Audience – who is your script FOR?
4) Keep an open mind
Part of a content writer’s job is to keep it fresh. Here is where imagination comes in; if you’re writing for a niche market such as the lottery world, you have to be able to think outside the box, or the news, blog, and promotions on your site are going to look old and boring very quickly. With a good imagination, it’s amazing how you can connect the most esoteric subject to suit and entertain your audience. Fashion, cars, holidays, travel, and even pets… anything can be turned into high quality content that will keep the audience engaged on your site. MORE: How Do I Become A Freelance Writer?
Unless you are lucky enough to work for a company that will spoon feed you the topics and information you are required to write about, you will need patience, and a lot of it. Finding things to write about that are interesting, fresh, and suitable for your market takes time. Content writers are also called on to write newsletter, promotional emails, and the occasional press release and product descriptions. The patience required for this is felt most when your inner Shakespeare clashes with the marketing needs of the company. Sometimes, you give them gold and they want brass. Just take a deep breath and remember that this pays the bills. MORE: How To Make It As A Writer AKA This Shit Ain’t Accidental
BIO: Austin Weaver is the senior content writer for the online lottery ticket service provider The Lotter where he writes … A LOT. Connect with him on Facebook here
A thesaurus is dangerous for there are multiple meanings and nuances for words. You can easily pick a word that sounds great but means something you didn’t intend. I avoid the thesaurus. E. G. “John and I had a nice intercourse (conversation) the other day.”