Writing is an art that cannot be taught. A person has to have an inherent talent to pen her thoughts so much so that when others read them, they not only understand, but also enjoy them. While writing cannot be taught, certain guidelines and parameters can be set as per the requirement of clients, which then need to be followed to a tee. Every piece of content has a specific purpose to serve and only the writer who knows exactly why she is writing and who she is writing for can make the content impactful.
When you begin your career as a content writer, it is pretty natural to be overwhelmed. Content writing is an immensely vast domain and at the beginning, it is not uncommon for novices to fumble or make mistakes. The trick is to learn from them and keep diving deep into the domain.
Here’s what all those kick-starting their content writing careers should keep in mind:
Understand the Purpose
You need to know why you are writing a particular piece of content. Only if that question is answered clearly can you use proper words to convey the intent of the content, in turn, making it more effective. So, it is vital, especially for a new content writer, to ask questions in this regard to whoever has assigned her the topic to write on. Do not hesitate to ask this question, no matter how silly it might seem. Believe it or not, “why” or “what for” is the key to writing content that makes the right impact.
Don’t Run Away from Research
Yes, you read it right! For every piece of content, in-depth research is a must. It is actually extremely unfortunate that these days a lot of content is being created based on second-grade research. Just a couple of Google searches on the topic and there it is – a full-length write-up that is then delivered to the client. The fact of the matter is only first-hand research and fact checking can add originality to the content. Otherwise, you are just adding yet another piece of clutter to the already chaotic World Wide Web.
Create a Mind Map
Before you start writing, be clear on how you want your write-up to be structured. Decide on the flow of your write-up then jot it down in the form of a mind map. A mind map is a diagram with the main idea in the middle and the associated ones placed around it. This will give clarity to your thoughts and will help you add uniformity to the structure of your content. Mind maps especially come handy when you are writing about complex topics, which require lot of research.
Choose the Correct Words
What words you use to frame your sentences carries a lot of weightage. Some words might seem synonymous and may have been used alternatively at some places, but which word fits exactly into your context needs to be identified by you. Remember that using incorrect words or irrelevant synonyms can reduce the overall impact of your write-up. For instance, though ‘whole’ and ‘entire’ are often used synonymously, “He drinks whole milk” and “He drank the entire milk” have completely different meanings.
Proofread Your Content
For many writers, proofreading can be more painstaking than writing content itself. This is because often it is boring to read the same thing all over again. Plus, it also takes extra time. In corporate environments governed by strict deadlines, even dedicating five to ten extra minutes to proofreading may impact daily targets and so, this is one aspect of content writing that is often overlooked or ignored. However, proofreading is directly related to the quality of your content and when you are just beginning your career, quality matters more than quantity in order to make your mark.
Having said all this, something that absolutely cannot be ignored today when it comes to producing quality content is SEO. No matter how good a writer you are, if your content is not optimized for the search engines, it is highly unlikely for it to appear in search results. From placing the right keywords within the content and optimizing meta tags, to creating backlinks and growing your social media presence, SEO involves a variety of activities that can give visibility to your content on the Internet.
So, if you are new to the field of content writing, it is time to pull up your socks and explore this vast domain. A whole of bunch of surprises await you on the way; you will never be bored or disappointed!