For better writing
3 min read

For better writing

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Yo! Welcome to the next episode of The Content Strategy Reeder where 6,053 people get better at content strategy and creation in 5 minutes or less.

Covid made a run through the Reed Residence this week (thankfully everyone's OK and bouncing back), so this week's episode is a quick post for clearer writing.


In 2020 I wrote my best blog of all time.

Not best because it was the most popular (though it was well received), but because of how easy it was to write.

But I didn’t really write it so much as it flowed out of me.

I recall sitting down, my keyboard clickety-clacking, then poof — I exited flow state with a solid first draft.  

This almost never happens, but I was able to get into flow state and produce high quality work on that day because I had perfect clarity on what I was writing, why, and who it was for.

Most of the pain felt by staring at a blank Google doc is caused by not knowing exactly what you’re trying to write.  

So I reverse engineered what clarity is needed and made a quick list of questions to answer before I write. Now I use it for all my content.

Few things are more enjoyable than being in the groove when writing, and that's why I'm sharing those 7 questions with you — so you can have clear thinking that fuels your best writing.

  1. What is the ONE problem I am solving?
  2. Who is experiencing this problem? Be as specific as possible.
  3. What are the benefits of solving the problem? (think tangible results)
  4. What's the “aha” moment? (aka the moment of insight)
  5. What promise am I making to my Reader?
  6. What emotion do I want my Reader to feel?
  7. What’s the next action I want my Reader to take? (CTA)

Bonus example

Here’s the blog post I referenced above, This (surprising) cold email CTA will help you book A LOT more meetings. I answered the italics as an example to help guide you.

1. What is the ONE problem I am solving?
How to increase meetings booked by using the best CTA

2. Who is experiencing this problem? Be as specific as possible.
Sales reps who prospect and work deals; secondary is email marketers and business owners

3. What are the benefits of solving the problem? (i.e. the tangible results)
More meetings booked → hit quota → build your pipeline

4. What's the “aha” moment? (ie, the power line)
The data shows that asking for interest (not time) is most effective for getting prospects to take a meeting.

5. What promise am I making to my Reader?
If you use these CTAs, you’ll book more meetings and build pipeline

6. What emotion(s) do I want my Reader to feel?
Surprise (from the data) and confidence

7. What’s the next action I want my Reader to take? (CTA)
Download cheat sheet; share article; engage - comment, follow me

Remember, clear thinking = clear writing.

Holler at you next week,
Devin

Did you this episode of CSR make you shake your tail feathers? If so, you’d make me sing “This Is How We Do It” by Montell Jordan if you shared this link with your friends or on LinkedIn. Here’s an example from Josh Rod for inspiration.

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