There’s a great quote from one of the original Mad Men, Howard Gossage*, who said

“The real fact of the matter is that nobody reads ads. People read what interests them, and sometimes it’s an ad.”

This applies to all content put out there as part of the promotion of a product or service – it’s got to be of interest to someone. Now if your ‘perfect clients’ are rocket scientists, just don’t ask someone who is not a rocket scientist whether they think what you’ve written is ‘interesting’!

Whether you’re writing an ad or an article, or a social media post, always have your reader in mind, and why they might want to spend their time reading what you’ve written. Is it going to help them in any way? Will they come back to read more of what you have written? Will they follow you or sign up to your emails? Will they follow your advice and get value from it?

If you know who you are writing for it makes the process of writing much easier. If you’re up for it, a great way of testing a piece of content is to see if it passes the ‘journalist test’. Call up a journo in your field and pitch your content to them. If they’re interested enough to write something about it, that’s a good sign. If they suggest you speak to the advertising department, that’s not (and yes, that’s happened to me).

More quotes from Howard Gossage

*and a hat tip to Roop Bhadury from engag3d for first telling me about this quote!

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