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November 20, 2012Nobody gives a toss about your brand

Are all brands self-obsessed narcissists? And are all agencies merely sycophantic flatterers telling them what they want to hear? Fact is most people care more about the product. So where does that leave your brand?

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November 8, 2012When only the best will do…

Is “good enough” really good enough? What do you do when only the best will do? Revisiting Pareto’s “80/20″ principle, it’s possible to suggest that most of the time things don’t have to be perfect. But sometimes only perfection is adequate. Do you know the difference?

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October 22, 2012Zed’s dead, baby…

Think words like “specalize” are an Americanism? Think again. In actual fact, we owe most modern British spelling to that very American invention — Microsoft Word.

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October 4, 2012Copywriting for Dummies

Let’s face it, most copywriters are a bunch of bookish nerds. So how do we write about products that require a “mass market’ appeal? Here’s some tips about how to talk to different audiences without talking down to them, as well as finding an appropriate tone of voice.

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September 27, 2012Think Like a Copywriter, condensed.

I’ve written a book about learning an effective process and set of best practices that naturally leads to the creation of good copy. But if you’re in a TL;DR frame of mind, here’s the condensed version – five steps to writing better copy.

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September 12, 2012Can using the MBTI help you write better copy?

“You are not a beautiful and unique snowflake,” or so said Tyler Durden in famous flick, Fight Club. And if you believe in the MBTI — the Myers Briggs Type Indicator — he’s right. You, and everyone else, is one of sixteen distinct personality types. Understanding them can help you write better copy.

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August 24, 2012Write less, do more

As a freelance copywriter, I have fought against copy mills, bad clients, price-per-word estimates, and B2B jargon. But now I’m going to take a stand against something more controversial. Words. Find out more by reading my guest post on Stephen Marsh’s excellent blog.

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August 15, 2012What copywriters can learn from Amsterdam

It was in Amsterdam where the technique of resuscitation was first developed. In a guest post, Stephen Marsh talks about what we can learn from these early pioneers, and how we can use similar techniques in copywriting to keep the pulse of a business alive while they work on a new strategy.

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July 30, 2012How to kill content mills

Content mills match cheap copywriters to cheap clients. They pay their copywriters as little as 1.5p per word. Put another way, you’d have to write the equivalent of a novel each week to earn the average national wage. That’s not just unfair. It’s immoral. So how can we fight back?

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July 20, 2012I don’t give out free samples — here’s why.

Free samples are for supermarkets. When a client asks me for sample work before signing a contract, I have to decline. It’s lost me a couple of jobs recently, and I’m seeing the request pop up more and more, so I decided to blog about it and explain my reasons why.

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