Clear writing guidelines create better content. It not only helps the copywriters to focus on the quality of your content but also helps you save time editing them later on.
Writing guidelines vary depending on content types. That said, below is a list of general guidelines which are applicable for most content:
2nd person, eg you, yours
Keep the sentences short. Any sentence should not be more than 15 words. Similarly, keep the paragraph short. Use simple English. Use bullet lists when necessary.
Backup The Facts
Any data or facts should be pulled from trusted sources only. Please list down (or directly link out) to the sources used.
Don’t be afraid to share personal experiences.
No Sales Language
Avoid using sale-like language as it breaks the trust. For example:
- Wrong: “You’ll find peace of mind when your dog finally stops barking!”
Instead, use conditional language (if, might, could, may, maybe) to make recommendations:
- Correct: “If it’s important to you to find a positive dog trainer, this may be a good place to start.”
No Passive Language
Please use the active voice. For example:
- Wrong: “To give you the best choice a ton of products were reviewed.”
- Correct: “We reviewed a ton of products to give you the best choice.”
Avoid Technical Jargon
If you need to use any technical language (or acronyms), explain in clear detail what it means.
- Wrong: “POH is one of the most commonly reported aesthetic complaints to dermatologists.”
- Correct: “Dark circles, or periorbital hyperpigmentation (POH) is one of the most commonly reported aesthetic complaints to dermatologists.”
Always Add Value and Avoid Filler Language
Every sentence should add value to your article; ask yourself if each sentence is necessary and if it enhances the quality of writing.
- Always add useful/valuable information.
- No BS’ing.
- Wrong: “If your dog is acting up, you might need a dog trainer” (…duh).
- Wrong: “This company teaches your dog to walk politely. They also offer leash training.” (…says the same thing twice).
- Wrong: Anything else that doesn’t add information to the article.
Examples of Good Articles