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Articles, news, and communication tips.

More or Less? The Perfect Length for Social Media Posts

Okay, maybe perfect isn’t the right word. After all, we’re human. But you want to harness the power of social media and you want to do it right. Part of that is knowing what to say, how to say it, and how much to say to engage your audience.

What's the best social media post length?If your job is in content creation, you’re a writer, even if that’s not a title you’d readily give yourself. And as writers, it’s our job to communicate ideas and tell stories. Words are our brushstrokes, our musical notation, our shaping of the clay. But good writing is as much what we don’t say as what we do. Every word should be intentional.

So when it comes to writing for social media, how long is the ideal post? How do we get those coveted likes, comments, and click-throughs? There is no magic formula, but some best practices have been found by studying the millions of social interactions that occur every single day.

How to Build Long-Term Client Relationships through Smart Communications

Show some business-love.

Valentine’s Day is a special day set aside to show appreciation for those we love; however, most of us know it’s important to appreciate your loved ones throughout the year.

The same is true with your business clients. The secret to building and maintaining solid business relations is to be professional, personable, and to express your appreciation often.

Below are a few tips on how you can “show some business love” and strengthen the tie between your clients and your business:

How to Get the Email Responses You Want

Have you ever written a detailed email to a colleague, only to receive a reply that ignored most or all of what you covered? Or have you waited weeks for a response from a client before giving up hope of hearing back? Chances are you have plenty of stories related to these frustrating situations.

Miscommunication, or a lack of communication altogether, is a problem faced every day in the business world. It not only wastes time, but it can also cause missed opportunities and lost profits. So how can you avoid this common problem?

3 Ways to Imitate the Greatest Writer of all Time

Shakespearean lessons for content creators

Image: Wikimedia Commons

by Hannah Comerford, Scribe Contributor

This week the world celebrates Shakespeare’s 450th birthday. Whether you hated reading Romeo and Juliet or you find yourself quoting sonnets regularly, chances are your vocabulary shows signs of his influence. Don’t believe me? Shakespeare Online attributes over 1,700 words to Shakespeare. From our everyday language to West Side Story, it’s nearly impossible to avoid Shakespearean references in our Western culture. Just think of all the royalties he’d be making if still alive.

Not many of us will earn undying success in the way Shakespeare did. Yet, content creators can glean business wisdom from his creative practices. Here are three ways Shakespeare became a literary legend.

Grammar Judgments

The Internet is filled with lists of misused words, but I found this one from Inc.com especially post-worthy.

I rarely use “whom” when I should. Even when spell check suggests “whom,” I think it sounds pretentious. So I don’t use it.

And I’m sure some people then think, “What a bozo.”

And that’s a problem, because just like that one misspelled word that gets a resumé tossed into the “nope” pile, using one wrong word can negatively impact your entire message.

Fair or unfair, it happens.

The author is right. People do judge you for grammar mistakes and misspellings, and Inc.’s article lists some of the biggest culprits (adverse/averse, elicit/illicit, and insure/ensure, to name a few). Check it out to find which ones you may be using incorrectly and follow the tips for how to remember the correct usage.

But why did I find this particular list worthy of a link?

Is Cyber-English Appropriate on the Job?

Have you ever found yourself typing “LOL” when writing to a client or employee and then decided against it? Are you unsure about using emoticons, abbreviations, or truncated sentences when sending emails or texts from your phone?

With today’s high speed messaging—email, status updates, instant messages, texts—many people are asking whether there’s now a place for breaking traditional grammar rules in business communication. Are emoticons, abbreviations, and truncated sentences ever appropriate at work?

How to Develop a Great Presentation

by Hannah Comerford, Scribe Contributor

Have you ever sat through a poor PowerPoint presentation? Chances are you grew bored and distracted, your eyes strained from trying to read the slides, or you gave up on note-taking after your hand started cramping.

Can you remember sitting through a great presentation? If it was particularly well prepared, you probably still remember the key points, and you may even implement the information in your daily life. You left the presentation feeling connected to the speaker, whether you agreed with all the points or not.

Which category do your presentations fall into? Are they lackluster or brilliant? Whether you’re a pastor, a nonprofit coordinator, or a businesswoman, you want your presentations to deliver an impactful message. Take a look at the following steps to boost your presentation’s impact.

Once Upon A Time: Using Story in Your Business Writing

by Hannah Comerford, Scribe Contributor

February 26 is Tell a Fairy Tale Day. You probably don’t have any celebrations lined up. In fact, you may even be wondering why we’re talking about fairy tales on a business writing blog. Are fairy tales, or storytelling in general, relevant to the modern business writer?

To answer these questions, let’s first discuss why fairy tales are popular in the first place. While fairy tales are usually associated with children, the popularity of prime time television shows that celebrate fairy tale characters suggests that maybe adults still enjoy hearing new spins on their childhood stories.

Here are just a few reasons why stories and fairy tales are so popular:

Build Credibility through Your Business Communications

Last week, our daily communication tips offered advice on how you can build credibility through your business communications.

Here’s a recap:

  • Learn your industry’s terminology and be able to explain it. Speaking the language demonstrates that you know your field.
  • Use specific facts. Vague statements and lack of data weaken your message; detailed information supports your claims.
  • Cite your sources. Skeptical readers can then research your claims and come to their own conclusions.
  • Use credible sources. Peer-reviewed publications and established experts are trusted over online sources like Wikipedia.
  • Anticipate and address questions and counterarguments. Show that you’ve thought through your ideas and statements.

This Fast Company article offers more advice on how to avoid trust busters that dilute your credibility.

 

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