August 29th Update: Too much to write; no training today.
Hey guys! So, today’s a Monday, and it’s the last Monday of the month — and in lieu of the past two months, that means we’re in the red line week. The red line week, which is a term I just came up with, is the last work week in the month wherein I typically keep my engines revved up to the point of red lining, trying to squeeze a couple of articles into my monthly quota and write as much as I can before the month ends. It’s not healthy, but the last few months have been rather dry so… *shrug*
So instead of talking about my training today (because there was none), I’ll talk a little bit about what it is that I do. If you haven’t read my About page, then let me summarize it for you:
I write for a living.
If you’ve spent any amount of time on the Internet, then you’ll know that the web is full of one specific thing: content. Content comes in lots of different forms. There’s audio content. Video content. Articles. Blog posts. Tweets, status updates, poems, macro images, Reddit posts, imgur uploads, 4chan postings, white papers, infographics, eBooks, webinars and comments.
I specialize in written forms of content; specifically articles, blog posts, press releases and social media. Now, content, for the most part, is either user-generated or paid content. When it comes to consumerism — which absolutely dominates the Internet — most of the content you’ll see out there is content commissioned by companies specifically for the proliferation of their own web presence.
That’s where SEO comes in. SEO stands for search engine optimization, and it’s the practice of ensuring that a web page is, in every way, as presentable as possible to Google, Bing and Yahoo as possible — so when someone keys in a search entry relevant to a certain business, that business will rank above its competitors due to SEO ensuring that it’s presented as the more reliable and qualitative website.
To do that, you mostly need content. Content will create more indexed pages that search engines crawl and attribute to certain business, giving it more authority on the web, and thus ranking the page higher. That’s why so many companies have blogs, Facebook pages, and Twitter accounts — through these, they can engage their demographic, attain more traffic on their website, and communicate with former or returning customers. All while boosting their online search engine ranking, and making it easier for potential customers to find them through Google et al.
I write mostly for businesses.
While my experience defines me as a skilled writer, my real asset lies in understanding digital marketing. Whether it’s the efficacy of video collaboration, the secrets of a good email campaign, how not to screw up a webinar or whether to invest in blogger outreach or a different type of customer co-creation, or really anything else, years of experience have helped me compound a relatively large intermediate depository of actionable knowledge regarding modern marketing (and its future) and the role content plays in business and society in general.
We’re living in 2016, and our society is data-driven one. But this doesn’t just abstractly refer to the “big data” that exists far above us in the locked and secure servers of large companies that store our habits, information and behavior to help drive up profits — it also refers to the metric tons of content we consume on a daily basis. What makes good content? Why is some content better than others? How can you truly satisfy and engage in your audience, not just to make a living, but simply to provide them with entertainment and education — with true value?
There are countless factors that go into good content, but the biggest is always honesty. There’s only so much tweaking and editing you can do before you lose your originality and message in pursuit of conforming to the standards of what a proper article should look like — you need to keep your voice, your presence. You need to, more than anything else, feel the need to present your readers with something of value.
That’s what I aim to do, at all times. The point of SEO ultimately is to sift content by intent — keeping content that is at least mutually beneficial to both readers and companies, and at best, purely written (or formulated) for the benefit of the reader.
That aside, though, I am really just a humble copywriter, with a passion for writing, writing away.
I’ve still got more work tomorrow and during the rest of the week, but I do hope that by tomorrow afternoon I’ll be done with the bulk of my responsibilities — just in time for BJJ. *flex*
Currently listening to: Stronger — Kanye West