Social media and digital marketing campaigns appear to outdo traditional writing in our modern digital age. However, good writing still matters. It is still arguably the most critical skill for communication executives and PR professionals. Yet, it is also the skill that requires the most improvement today. So follow along for some of our writing tips at Playbook Public Relations.
First, you need a good brainstorming session. In this process, you develop a list of topics and ideas you would like to explore. Specifically, focus on the acronym I.D.E.A.S:
- Industry Context (trends): One of the most important things to be aware of in the PR industry is to be timely. One way to do this is to be attentive to trends around you that may be relevant to your brand and cover them in your writing.
- Data: People like numbers. You may need to dig and do some deep research to find stats or collect some on your own through polls and/or surveys.
- Events: What is going on? If there are any critical conferences, galas, or other events that your organization is hosting or attending, make sure that you cover those.
- Associates: Has anyone at your company done anything significant or won an award? If so, this is a great topic to write about because it gives a deeper insight into the company’s workers and is an excellent way to show off accomplishments.
- Seasonal and Cyclical Happenings: Be aware of annual events or holidays that may be relevant to your organization. Writing about these topics may spark more interest in readers and can help you make connections with others who participate in similar events.
Following this list of points, you will undoubtedly find a great story.
- Do Your Research
No matter the story, it would be best if you did your research. This research could be as simple as having the correct names of people or the proper location of an event to content as complex as scientific data. However, both are equally important.
It would help if you also researched your clients. Look at old press releases or blogs to ensure that you write in a similar voice and maintain the same style to keep it as authentic as possible.
- Know Your Target Audience
Knowing your audience is also a crucial step in good writing. Your audience will determine the type of language you use to deliver more targeted and compelling messages that appear to be written for them. If you are aware of your audience’s demographics, needs, and motivations, it will be easier to write content that will spark their interest.
Researching your target audience will also help you to determine the mediums in which the message is shared. Then, depending on the medium, you may consider having a couple of versions of your message to make it fit each channel.
One of the worst mistakes you can make is skipping a proofread. First, it is essential to look over your work for any spelling or grammatical mistakes because if there are mistakes, the writing will appear sloppy and unprofessional. Then, you want to look it over again to check for factual errors. For instance, getting a statistic or location wrong could be destructive to the message.
In addition, ask for a second pair of eyes for a review. A fresh set of eyes may identify mistakes that you missed. Also, it gives you a reasonable, new perspective on your work. Finally, try to find someone who does not know everything about your topic. This will help you see if your writing is clear and concise from a new angle.
- Write Like a Journalist
Do not make your reader tired or confused by adding more information than you need. At the end of the day, when you are writing for PR, you are often trying to get the attention of journalists so that they pick up your story. So, you might as well write like one, follow these steps below:
- Concise: Be concise. Keep the main message straight to the point so that readers can walk away with the message clear in their minds. Also, limit the number of technical words and modifiers unless you are reaching a particular audience.
- Good flow: Does it read well and tell a story?
- Factual: People like to know the facts. If there are any crucial statistics, quotes, or other data that would support your work, it is always a good idea to include them, as long as the data is not too overpowering.