“There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.” – Ernest Hemingway
Hemingway is one of my all-time favorite writers (and not just because I had to read him in high school, either). His prose is crisp, clean, and compulsively readable. He wrote with a journalist’s flair for storytelling but a copywriter’s command of simplicity and conciseness.
But even Hemingway sat down at the typewriter and just bled sometimes. Writing can be very hard. And writer’s block is all too real.Continue reading…
I’ll never forget the time I presented a well-researched monthly social media package to a new beauty client. He took a look at the first few posts for Twitter, scrunched up his nose, and said, “Let’s avoid exclamation marks. We’re all adults here.”
First off—what does that even mean? Second, how ridiculous! This client wanted his beauty brand’s tone of voice to match what he was accustomed to (he used to work as an investor on Wall Street).
But he failed to understand a fundamental truth of branding: you market to the customer, not yourself. His target market was beauty, but he didn’t know how to speak with their voice. He just didn’t get it.
If I had to sum up the past decade of marketing in one word, it would be “adaptation.”
Customers are just too smart. They block ads, ignore canned content, and are better read than ever before. They continue to be more and more empowered. So what’s a marketer to do? How can brands possibly react in time to shifting expectations, much less strategically?
There’s a common misconception that no one reads anymore.
In fact, the opposite is true: more people are reading now than ever before. Between blog posts, emails, social media updates, eBooks, text messages, Wikipedia articles, and everything else the Internet offers, we process about 54,000 words a day, the length of a typical novel.
But how much of that content actually sticks with you? There is more content out there than ever, but so little of it lingers in your brain. You see it every day. Forgettable click-bait articles. Emails sent straight to the overflowing spam folder. eBooks you drop after the first ten pages.