Seven magnificent tips for more effective writing

We all have to write, but very few of us enjoy the process. Technical marketing, where getting the message right involves blending science, engineering, copywriting and design, can be particularly challenging. This, as it happens, is the area in which RSK Communication Services specialises. We thrive on the challenge of marketing technical products and services, so our editorial team has pulled together a few tips that might help make your writing more effective.


Try to make things clearer

That may seem obvious, but there are plenty of technical marketing publications out there that seem to have missed this fundamental rule. Good writing is supposed to explain and illuminate. The writer should be trying to make things a little clearer and help the reader make a little more sense of our world. And that is the case whether you are writing a novel or a product description.


Anticipate your reader’s questions

Good writing serves the reader. It anticipates the questions readers may have as they read a piece and answers them as they arise in readers’ mind. Explanation is never wasted. Producing writing that answers customers’ questions is where marketing communication specialists add most value. An outside agency can ask those questions and have you answer them before committing text to screen. The aim is to make it as easy as possible for customers to understand what they are being offered and why they should buy it.


Reveal your sources

If you are in the business of making claims about products or services, data will give your writing context and lend credibility. Content rooted in something true – not just your opinion – is more credible. Use data, fact checking, research findings and other published sources to make your content solid, factual and defensible.


A little bit of balance goes a long way

It can be very important to present opposing viewpoints. By incorporating different perspectives, you show that you have given careful consideration to the subject you are writing about. Even if you cannot dismiss all the potential negatives, you should acknowledge that they exist. Keeping such information back is a sure way to lose the trust of your readers.


Make it simple, but keep it correct

Science and technology, and the businesses built upon them, can be complicated. The products or services you want to promote might involve difficult concepts that seem impenetrable to that non-specialist reader who has the final say on purchasing. Simple does not mean simplistic or dumbed-down. You can assume that your readers know next to nothing about a subject, but never assume that they are stupid. Clear writing flows from clarity of thought. Think what you want to say, then say it as simply as you can without distorting misrepresentation. The first step is to lose the jargon and corporate blah words, and then convey the message in the most accessible terms you can.


Rewrite until it’s right

One of the most important things in written communication is finding the right words. Unfortunately, the right words are not likely to be the ones that came hot off your keyboard in a feverish, late-night splurge of textual creativity. Reviewing and reworking drafts will, ultimately, pay huge dividends.


Find a good editor

The best writing is the result of a collaborative process. Writers get the glory, but behind every good writer there is a good editor. Find a professional whose views you value, a person who will be honest with you and who has a good grasp of grammar. An editor like that brings a lot to the writing and communication process.