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Book review: Farnsworth’s Classical English Rhetoric

For years, I never knew that the process of building an argument has a name. And that name is rhetoric. And that every white paper I wrote was an exercise in rhetoric. As I slowly got a clue, I revisited Aristotle‘s three elements of persuasion. I find it very powerful to know which element to use…

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Book review: The Content Marketing Handbook

I have plenty of books by Bob Bly—the copywriter’s copywriter—on my shelves. And every so often, I add another. Bly is one of a small handful of writers who are equally at home writing both content and copy, writing to explain and writing to persuade. His recent book The Content Marketing Handbook is a treasure-trove…

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Book review: Writing White Papers

Writing White Papers book cover

Fifteen years ago, Michael Stelzner was the world’s leading authority on white papers. Based in San Diego, he wrote well over 100 white papers for firms such as HP, Microsoft and SAP. He founded the biggest online forum ever devoted to white papers, called WhitePaperSource (now offline). He did groundbreaking work, including the biggest-ever survey of…

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A few of my favorite things; a look back at 2017

Here’s a few of my favorite things from 2017. After all, there’s more to life than white papers.  One of the habits of highly effective people is to “sharpen the saw.” That means taking time off to refresh and renew yourself. [Tweet “Take time off to refresh and renew; you can start with some of…

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Book review: The Elements of Style

The earliest edition of The Elements of Style was set down 100 years ago in 1919. But it’s far from outdated. In fact, The Elements of Style remains the single most brief and practical guide to English writing that’s ever appeared. By far. Whether you write B2B, B2C, mysteries, or even the text on cereal…

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7 habits of highly effective white paper writers

  The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People is an acknowledged self-help masterpiece. Written by Stephen Covey and published in 1989, this book has sold an estimated 25 million copies. And it’s been translated into 38 (?!) languages. These seven habits make a lot of sense to me. And I’ve been thinking about how well Covey’s…

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7 habits of highly effective white paper marketers

photo of red ocean at sunset to signify a crowded market for writers

One of my favorite self-help books is 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey. First published in 1989, it has sold an estimated 25 million copies in 38 languages. I still try to follow its guidelines in my own life. With apologies, I’ve applied the 7 habits to the act of marketing with highly…

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Book review: Yahoo! Style Guide

cover of Yahoo Style Guide

No matter what you think of Yahoo! it’s been around a long time. Founded in 1995, the site remains one of the most popular destinations on the web. For many years, Yahoo! was one of the most popular sites on the web, with many services and a ton of content. The company’s writers and editors obviously have…

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Book review: The White Paper Marketing Handbook

White papers drive billions of dollars worth of technology sales every year. Yet few people can say for sure what a white paper really is. That’s why any new book devoted to building more understanding about white papers is welcome. In The White Paper Marketing Handbook, renowned copywriter Bob Bly covers a lot of territory. In fact,…

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