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Learn 3 Foolproof Copywriting Hacks for Brand Success

Learn 3 Foolproof Copywriting Hacks for Brand Success

    Ever since before the rise of the Internet, branding has been a crucial way for businesses and professionals to stand out from the crowd. Those who haven’t taken up any kind of branding strategy for themselves or their business are often left struggling to be visible and grappling for customers’ attention.

    So how do you position your brand for success? How do you get customers to look your way long enough to pitch a product or service? Here are a few proven ways to make sure your branding efforts start on the right track.

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    Don’t Just Change a Book’s Cover

    To make sure your branding effort is as effective as it can be, don’t forget to go beyond appearances. Don’t just change your logo or color palette and forget to define the meat of your brand—your voice.

    Your voice is conveyed by your content and by how your writing comes across in your platforms and materials.

    It’s a vital part of a brand because if your voice contrasts with the message you want to get across, your content will only confuse and alienate your audience.

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    Once you have a concept in mind, build the visual aspects of your brand as well as your written communication around that concept. This means writing in a style that ideally encapsulates the image you’re trying to project.

    If your business sells sports gear, and you are trying to get a piece of the young adult market, speak in a language that resonates with young people and that sounds natural to them.

    Don’t write in your FB posts or tweets phrases like “This proprietary technology item aids in intensive training like no other.” If I read that, I would probably think the business catered to a very technical community, like mechanical engineers, rather than to young sports enthusiasts.

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    A better way to craft this sentence would be “Our exclusive gear is built to keep up with even the most hard-hitting training routines.” See how that sounds much better? It’s much clearer and simpler, and it doesn’t take more than a few seconds to understand what the message is about.

    Ditch the Corporate Speak and Ancient Buzzwords

    I don’t know if you’ve noticed this, but corporate speak has now been relegated to boardrooms and to stuffy settings where people can’t talk in normal language.

    Since we’re now living in a connected age, it’s important for your brand to sound human. This makes your writing easier to understand and leaves no confusion in readers’ minds about what you’re actually trying to say.

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    Imagine saying “Our systems development life-cycle is very synergistic” when you only mean to say that it won’t take long to develop your app. Your readers would no doubt go insane trying to work out what you were originally trying to say.

    Other buzzwords to avoid include disruptive innovation, convergence, leverage, robust, and a host of other terms that hardly have any real meaning.

    The Key Thing to Remember

    To recap, brand copywriting should be all about simplicity. If the meaning of what you’ve written takes more than a few seconds to register in your mind, those probably aren’t the right words to use. Writing brand copy is part art and part common sense—you have to use both or you’ll be left with copy that sounds like it’s past its due date.

    As the saying goes, real intelligence is when you can make a complicated thing sound simple, not the other way around. If you know how to do this, you’re one step ahead. You’ll soon be writing brand copy that engages and connects with your target audience, no matter who that is.

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    Jeanne San Pascual

    Freelance Copywriting Consultant

    Learn 3 Foolproof Copywriting Hacks for Brand Success

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    Last Updated on July 16, 2019

    7 Powerful Habits To Win In Office Politics

    7 Powerful Habits To Win In Office Politics

    Office politics – a taboo word for some people. It’s a pervasive thing at the workplace.

    In its simplest form, workplace politics is simply about the differences between people at work; differences in opinions, conflicts of interests are often manifested as office politics. It all goes down to human communications and relationships.

    There is no need to be afraid of office politics. Top performers are those who have mastered the art of winning in office politics. Below are 7 good habits to help you win at the workplace:

    1. Be Aware You Have a Choice

    The most common reactions to politics at work are either fight or flight. It’s normal human reaction for survival in the wild, back in the prehistoric days when we were still hunter-gatherers.

    Sure, the office is a modern jungle, but it takes more than just instinctive reactions to win in office politics. Instinctive fight reactions will only cause more resistance to whatever you are trying to achieve; while instinctive flight reactions only label you as a pushover that people can easily take for granted. Neither options are appealing for healthy career growth.

    Winning requires you to consciously choose your reactions to the situation. Recognize that no matter how bad the circumstances, you have a choice in choosing how you feel and react. So how do you choose? This bring us to the next point…

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    2. Know What You Are Trying to Achieve

    When conflicts happen, it’s very easy to be sucked into tunnel-vision and focus on immediate differences. That’s a self-defeating approach. Chances are, you’ll only invite more resistance by focusing on differences in people’s positions or opinions.

    The way to mitigate this without looking like you’re fighting to emerge as a winner in this conflict is to focus on the business objectives. In the light of what’s best for the business, discuss the pros and cons of each option. Eventually, everyone wants the business to be successful; if the business don’t win, then nobody in the organization wins.

    It’s much easier for one to eat the humble pie and back off when they realize the chosen approach is best for the business.

    By learning to steer the discussion in this direction, you will learn to disengage from petty differences and position yourself as someone who is interested in getting things done. Your boss will also come to appreciate you as someone who is mature, strategic and can be entrusted with bigger responsibilities.

    3. Focus on Your Circle of Influence

    At work, there are often issues which we have very little control over. It’s not uncommon to find corporate policies, client demands or boss mandates which affects your personal interests.

    Gossiping and complaining are common responses to these events that we cannot control. But think about it, other than that short term emotional outlet, what tangible results do gossiping really accomplish? In most instances, none.

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    Instead of feeling victimized and angry about the situation, focus on the things that you can do to influence the situation — your circle of influence. This is a very empowering technique to overcome the feeling of helplessness. It removes the victimized feeling and also allows others to see you as someone who knows how to operate within given constraints.

    You may not be able to change or decide on the eventual outcome but, you can walk away knowing that you have done the best within the given circumstances.

    Constraints are all around in the workplace; with this approach, your boss will also come to appreciate you as someone who is understanding and positive.

    4. Don’t Take Sides

    In office politics, it is possible to find yourself stuck in between two power figures who are at odds with each other. You find yourself being thrown around while they try to outwit each other and defend their own position; all at the expense of you getting the job done. You can’t get them to agree on a common decision for a project, and neither of them want to take ownership of issues; they’re too afraid they’ll get stabbed in the back for any mishaps.

    In cases like this, focus on the business objectives and don’t take side with either of them – even if you like one better than the other. Place them on a common communication platform and ensure open communications among all parties, so that no one can claim “I didn’t say that”.

    By not taking sides, you’ll help to direct conflict resolution in an objective manner. You’ll also build trust with both parties. That’ll help to keep the engagements constructive and focus on business objectives.

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    5. Don’t Get Personal

    In office politics, you’ll get angry with people. It happens. There will be times when you feel the urge to give that person a piece of your mind and teach him a lesson. Don’t.

    People tend to remember moments when they were humiliated or insulted. Even if you win this argument and get to feel really good about it for now, you’ll pay the price later when you need help from this person. What goes around comes around, especially at the workplace.

    To win in the office, you’ll want to build a network of allies which you can tap into. The last thing you want during a crisis or an opportunity is to have someone screw you up because they harbor ill-intentions towards you – all because you’d enjoyed a brief moment of emotional outburst at their expense.

    Another reason to hold back your temper is your career advancement. Increasingly, organizations are using 360 degree reviews to promote someone. Even if you are a star performer, your boss will have to fight a political uphill battle if other managers or peers see you as someone who is difficult to work with. The last thing you’ll want is to make it difficult for your boss to champion you for a promotion.

    6. Seek to Understand, Before Being Understood

    The reason people feel unjustified is because they felt misunderstood. Instinctively, we are more interested in getting the others to understand us than to understand them first. Top people managers and business leaders have learned to suppress this urge.

    Surprisingly, seeking to understand is a very disarming technique. Once the other party feels that you understand where he/she is coming from, they will feel less defensive and be open to understand you in return. This sets the stage for open communications to arrive at a solution that both parties can accept.

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    Trying to arrive at a solution without first having this understanding is very difficult – there’s little trust and too much second-guessing.

    7. Think Win-Win

    As mentioned upfront, political conflicts happen because of conflicting interests. Perhaps due to our schooling, we are taught that to win, someone else needs to lose. Conversely, we are afraid to let someone else win, because it implies losing for us.

    In business and work, that doesn’t have to be the case.

    Learn to think in terms of “how can we both win out of this situation?” This requires that you first understand the other party’s perspective and what’s in it for him.

    Next, understand what’s in it for you. Strive to seek out a resolution that is acceptable and beneficial to both parties. Doing this will ensure that everyone truly commit to the agreed resolution and will not pay only lip-service to it.

    People simply don’t like to lose. You may get away with win-lose tactics once or twice but very soon, you’ll find yourself without allies in the workplace.

    Thinking win-win is an enduring strategy that builds allies and help you win in the long term.

    Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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