I learned a technique as a magazine writer. As an exercise, we wrote a sentence or paragraph using ordinary words, as in this example:
- John went to the store to buy bananas.
Then we had to replace the ordinary words and phrases with more descriptive ones, as in this example:
- John lumbered into the small neighborhood grocery on his quest for the most perfectly ripe bananas to please his perfectionist mother.
The first sentence merely says what he does, the second sentence tells a whole story.
By simply expanding your vocabulary you can wake up your copy, make it inviting and exciting, and attract customers. After all, we don’t buy the product itself, we actually buy if for what it does for us or how it makes us feel.
Does Your Copy Just Say What You Do, or Does it Tell a Story?
How can you use an expanded vocabulary to better describe your business in a way that tells your story? Pepper in descriptive words throughout your copy. (Check Thesaurus.com for a plethora of choices.)
Here are some ideas:
You say: We advise clients:
Instead, use: coach, mentor, teach, train, educate, instruct, counsel, direct, groom, refresh, prime, ground, enlighten, etc.
- Our mentoring program helps to educate clients, enlightening them to new ways of thinking that will create a solid ground for their ongoing success.
You say: We sell plumbing fixtures:
Instead, use: arrange, bring in, produce, promise, agree, advise, demonstrate, satisfy, brighten, accomplish, enhance, generate, provide, flatter, influence, impress, etc.
- Let us arrange a demonstration of the latest fashions in plumbing fixtures that will flatter and enhance any decor. We promise your satisfaction.
Try It Yourself
As your own exercise, write down what you do in simple words. Then using our writer’s technique, see if you can find better, more descriptive words to tell your story.
If you need help, or would like us to enliven your website, brochure, social media or marketing copy, please contact us at email@example.com.
Although we’d love to work with everyone, in reality, there are only so many clients we can work with at one time if we want to continue to provide our high level of service. And those clients who work with us stay with us for years. It’s rare that we have openings!
Here are some of the reasons our blog writing clients love us and why you will too: Continue reading →
If you have ever been to a networking group, you were probably asked to stand and give your “elevator pitch” to the group. Members are trained in how to present who they are, what they do, and the benefits of their product or service in 30 seconds or less, or the time it would take to travel in an elevator from floor to floor (which is why it’s called an elevator pitch).
Even if you don’t network, you will constantly be asked, “So, what do you do?” It will happen at family gatherings, parties, social events…pretty much anyplace people gather.
Therefore, you need to be prepared with an elevator speech. It doesn’t have to be canned, but it does need to outline the basics that not only tell what you do, but inspire the listener to ask more. Here are some simply steps to developing your perfect pitch.
Keep it short
People don’t want a long drawn-out explanation of what you do. Very often, they’re just asking to be polite. Keep your introduction to no more than 3 sentences, then ask a question to engage the other party. If you do all the talking, you will lose your audience.
Hone your USP
What makes you unique? What are you known for? This is your unique selling proposition or USP and it will be the point people remember. Be sure to include it in your introduction. For example, TOMS Shoes is known for giving a new pair of shoes to a child in need for every pair that is purchased. Continue reading →
Many an entrepreneur has started a business from home. You might recognize some of the more famous names: Jeff Bezos (Amazon.com), Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak (Apple), Sergey Brin and Larry Page (Google), and Walt Disney (Disney). These men all started their companies from their garages.
In 2013, Small Business Trends reported that 69% of startup and 59% of established businesses were home-based. Even more interesting, the 2012 Global Entrepreneurship Monitor report stated that more than half of U.S. entrepreneurs continued to operate their businesses from home long after they had been established.
There is no stigma in stating that your business is run from home. In fact, there are many smart reasons to continue doing it Continue reading →
The Law Office of Patricia E. Tichenor, P.L.L.C. had an older website that just didn’t offer the friendly feel or functionality attorney Patricia Tichenor wanted. She wants to be known as a different type of law firm — one that is warm and friendly — and wanted the copy to reflect that difference. New to this site are the FAQs and the blog, which also add a client-centric focus.
All the Buzz worked with a design partner and created the copy on the new website. All the Buzz also creates the blog posts for the site in order to offer in-depth insights into various services and issues and to assist with search engine optimization.
If your website needs revising or a whole new look, or you need to keep current on your blog posts, please contact All the Buzz. We’ll provide the professional look and feel you need.
I, like other writers, am always looking for good stories. When we writers find something we think is interesting, it is likely that others will find it interesting as well, so we pitch the story idea to magazines, newspapers, online media, etc. If the publication also believes their readership will benefit from the story, they will contract with us to write it.
But how does a story get from your company into the media? Continue reading →
There’s something about seeing your story in print that never gets old. I also find it especially thrilling when my photographs are also printed, as in this beautiful montage for my article about the National Aquarium (see photos and story here) in the May/June 2016 issue of Viva Tysons magazine.
Have a story you’d like to see in print? Contact All the Buzz to find out how we can help.
Sometime in your career, you’ve been asked to give a presentation. Maybe it went well. Or maybe it didn’t. The answer lies with your audience. Did they listen attentively and ask questions, or did they look at their watches and dart out the door once you were done?
There is a science to giving a good presentation and professionals know they just can’t wing it. A good presentation is carefully researched, written and practiced ahead of time, keeping the audience’s interests in mind. Here are six steps that can help you develop a better presentation.
How to Give a Better Presentation
- Find out who your audience is. Then single out a couple of members or leaders and send a questionnaire or hold an interview in advance to find out what issues they are facing, or what it is they really want to learn or know. Incorporate this information into your presentation.
- If you must use slides, use them as visual backup to what you are saying. Do not outline your presentation on the slides and read it to your audience.
- In your opening, you must make an emotional connection with your audience. Use a story, ask a question, or astonish them with a shocking statistic to catch their attention and pique their curiosity.
- Tell the audience what they are going to hear and the benefits they will get from listening. At the end of your presentation, review what you went over and reinforce the benefit.
- In the body of your presentation, stick to no more than three important points. Make eye contact with members of the audience.
- In your closing, circle back to your opening statement and close with a call to action–what do you want people to do? Tell them. And always end with a positive statement or forecast.
If you are not a good speaker, write out your presentation. Or better yet, hire a professional copywriting firm like All the Buzz to help you.
Owners Lucy Silva and Mary Taylor wanted an inviting website that reflected their commitment to quality and highlighted their personal touch. Their home page describes it best: “The luxury of an upscale spa; the warmth of a best friend’s home.”
A soothing design, custom photography, and customer-based copy help enliven the site and relate to what clients are looking for.