If you're serious about content marketing, it's essential to improve your writing skills. In this short piece, I'll give you three simple tips.
Do we want to improve our writing skills?
Before I give you my tips to improve your writing skills, let's have a look at the interest around the topic on Google.
As you can see from the graphs below, the popularity of the query "improve writing skills" has been steadily growing since 2004 on Google Web Search and even more on Youtube (people love watching videos for tips).
Tip #1: read a lot of quality content
It might sound obvious, but an essential part of the learning process to improve your writing skills is to read a lot of quality content.
Your sponge-like brain will absorb the ways ideas are articulated in your reading.
One says that you need at least 10,000 hours practising a craft to become an expert. So you should develop habits to write content on a daily basis, besides the work you have to carry out anyway.
Here's an easy way to write for fun while sharing your knowledge:
Tip #2: answer questions on Quora
Recently I started answering a lot of the pending questions which had piled up in my inbox since my registration. And I said to myself, well, that's a great way to practice my writing skills while providing value to the readers.
It's usually much shorter than writing a blog post and you don't have to come up with the topic, it's kindly suggested by Quora!
More generally, I invite you to write a blog post each time you feel you have something valuable to share. It's a great exercise!
Tip #3: use Google, Ludwig, Hemingway and Linguee
Especially when you're writing in a foreign language, it's essential to know whether you're using appropriate phrases.
The easiest way to check if you're not the only one on earth using a particular wording is to type the exact sequence in Google with the quotation mark operator, i.e. "keyword".
If the search retrieves thousands of results, you're either making the same mistake as thousands of other people or using popular / acceptable phrasing. But if you only see a handful of suggestions, you might have been too creative.
You can also use an amazing dedicated tool called Ludwig which pulls examples from leading publications like The New York Times, the BBC or The Guardian to either confirm your creative intuition or suggest better wording. It's free to try and really worth the €4.99 per month of the annual plan (I've just activated mine!).
You can also try the Hemingway app to check the quality of your piece.
The tips given by this simple tool are directly inspired by the crisp writing style of the master himself.
When I'm writing a piece in a foreign language I also love using Linguee.
It will instantly display contextualized translation suggestions, which is much more accurate than the isolated results provided by Google Translate.
Have fun improving your writing skills!