You may have the most groundbreaking, earth-shattering, amazing information and ideas, but if you don’t communicate them in a way that resonates with other people, you might as well be shouting gibberish. Writing clearly and well is important. That’s why we’ve put together some of our favorite writing tips, just for you.
A clear outline makes it easier for your readers to follow your ideas. Leaping from one subject to another and then back again is a recipe for confusion. Ask yourself what your key message is, then frame the rest of your article around it. Find a way to make your points flow logically from one to the other -- what connects them and why? After all, it’s much easier to follow a simple outline than to guess your way through a series of apparently unrelated points.
Pay Attention to Tone
Tone is important. No one wants to read articles that are condescending, nor are they interested in plowing through confusing verbage. It helps to imagine your reader in the room with you. How would you talk to that person? This technique often helps cut through many of the cutesy or accidentally condescending parts of a piece of writing.
Why should your readers be paying attention to what you say? What’s in it for them? Explain and illustrate the benefits of doing what you want them to do, whether it’s following your advice or buying your product.
Talk It Out
Reading your writing aloud can draw your attention to areas that need work. Sometimes your eyes simply skim over problem spots. Hearing the words you typed offers new perspective and will help make your writing smoother.
Keep It Simple
Brevity truly is the soul of wit. When most people are faced with a wall of text, they won’t even bother to skim through it. Be as clear as possible and stick to the point -- don’t ramble off on tangents, no matter how neat they seem. If you have a lot of information to communicate, consider breaking it up into multiple posts or handouts. Another strategy for getting rid of that wall of text is to incorporate images. Photos, charts, graphs, etc are all amazing tools that help communicate your point without letting the overall article get too wordy. Bulleted or numbered lists are another great resource for separating your ideas into manageable sections.
Stephanie Ronco has been editing for Food and Health Communications since 2011. She graduated from Colorado College magna cum laude with distinction in Comparative Literature. She was elected a member of Phi Beta Kappa in 2008.