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Quick Tip: Write AS you speak

Dictation feature in Word

Some classic advice to writers is “write like you speak.” So why not write AS you speak? Why not dictate the first draft of your next white paper? Here are just a few of the benefits: It’s 2.5X faster than typing. It leaves your hands free to juggle through sources. It removes more of the…

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Quick Tip: Show people on your white paper covers

show people on your white paper cover

The cover of any white paper is extremely valuable real estate. Don’t waste this space by showing nothing but text. That approach went out in the 1990s. Here are three old-fashioned examples.       What’s wrong with these covers? Well, many things: They’re not engaging They’re not visual, except for the splats of color They’re…

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Quick Tip: Don’t make your readers squint

40-ish woman with glasses having trouble reading

My pet peeve about B2B content is basic, impossible to argue with, and simple to fix. Don’t make your readers squint and struggle to read your text Make your text crisp, easy-to-read, 100% black type. If you’re a young designer, remember: You’re not designing for yourself. You’re designing for your readers, many of them 40, 50,…

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Quick Tip: Name your white papers right

Improve your SEO for white papers

This tip applies to everyone: writers, marketers, agencies, and designers. You know how most organizations have some system for naming files? And those names go something like this: whppr-cdv10bb4f-220417e-FINAL-FINAL.pdf And those filenames end up on your white papers when they’re published? Or maybe somebody along the way renames each white paper to match your corporate…

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Quick Tip: Move up your Executive Summary

quick tip: move up your executive summary

We all know the proper page order for a white paper, right? The proper page flow is clearly like this: Page 1: The cover that attracts attention with a graphic and catchy title Page 2: The Contents that show at-a-glance what’s inside Page 3: The all-important Executive Summary that sums up the main ideas I…

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Tips on using dictation software to write

Using voice recognition in an office

Marketer or writer, you need to get text out of your mind and onto your screen every day. Most people do that by typing. If you’re fast, you might get 60 words a minute. But you can talk at something like 150 words a minute: 2.5 times that fast. That’s why I love dictation software:…

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20 top tips for white paper designers

white paper design spelled out in wooden letters

First time ever designing a white paper? You can make that a smash hit or a total flop.  It’s as simple as that. White paper readers don’t demand anything fancy. They just want a document that’s easy to scan, easy to read, and professional. If you give them that, they’ll likely scan it to pick…

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10 tips on writing from Alexander Green

Last fall I had the pleasure of attending the AWAI 2016 Bootcamp in southern Florida. What a fantastic event! What’s not to like about a meet-up of 450 writers in an ocean-side town that has October temperatures reaching almost 90 degrees? And what a powerful opening keynote by Alexander Green who provided many inspiring tips on writing.   If…

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9 tips for how to be a great client

I’ve written for 120+ different companies now. That gives me enough experience to separate the sheep from the goats, the good from the bad. I’m always delighted to work with a good client again. And I’m happy to be done with the few I consider not-so-good. Here’s my list of 9 tips on how to be a great client for…

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How to write a white paper as tips

Try Googling a phrase like “7 tips” and you’ll see at least 100 million hits?! Check out any newsstand and you’ll find “tips” on the cover of most magazines. Self-help books sell $2+ billion every year. And what is a self-help book, if not a series of tips? So why do “tips” rule newsstands, bookstores…

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