5 Must-read Blog Posts

I love reading, and if I have a quiet work afternoon then there's nothing I love more than reading blogs on copywriting, marketing or anything else relevant to my work. I also read far too many blogs which include cute animal videos...but that's a whole other blog post.

I've been noticing some inspiring blog posts popping up on Twitter recently so I thought I would share with you 5 must-read blog posts - most published this month - that anyone working as a copywriter or in the digital industry will appreciate. Here we go!

1. Why a Copywriting Brief Should Be Anything But by Brand New Copy

I love following Jamie's posts as there's always an insightful piece of information or something I didn't know to keep me interested. His post of 12th March looked at the importance of a tight brief for copywriters - something anyone who works as a writer has moaned about in the past. A good brief can mean the difference between a job that's relatively easy to start and one which takes hours of extra research and countless questions to the client - not ideal for either party. Jamie has even included a copywriting brief template that he uses with his clients - I'll definitely be using this for future projects!

You can follow Brand New Copy on Twitter @BrandNewCopy

2. 9 Simple Ways to Write Product Descriptions that Sell by Shopify

Ok, so this was actually published back in June 2013, but whilst hunting for some assistance and inspiration for a product descriptions brief I was working on, I stumbled across it and it's since been added to my (ever-growing) bookmarks folder. There's a lot of obvious advice, but also some really helpful tips such as 'justify using superlatives' - don't say something is the best without providing proof.

3. 6 Fixes for Repetitive Writing by the Huffington Post (via Content Simply)

This is an article rather than a blog post but it was shared by Content Simply, who I follow on Twitter. Tips for more concise writing are always helpful when working to a tight word count - avoiding endless paragraphs is probably my favourite section of this article. Paragraphs that run on and on with no end in site often leave me feeling lost as a reader.

4. How to Create Exquisite Subheads by Jerod Morris - Copyblogger

This is an MP3 download rather than a blog post but it's well worth downloading and listening to in quieter moments. Subheadings are something I always find a challenge; it can be hard to craft compelling subheadings whilst focusing on the main body of the copy. As this podcast points out, it's all about recapturing the reader's attention as they scroll down; subheadings are what will catch their eye and could ultimately mean the difference between an engaged reader or one who gets bored and goes elsewhere.

5. How to Write a Magnetic Headline (in under 15 minutes) by Jerod Morris - Copyblogger

This is the first in the Lede Podcast series and looks at best practice for writing headlines and how to incorporate the 4 U's:  that's be USEFUL, provide a sense of URGENCY, convey the benefit as UNIQUE and be ULTRA-SPECIFIC (in case you didn't know). This is another great podcast that's ideal for listening to on your lunchbreak or whilst sorting out your invoices.

Copyblogger in particular have had some really interesting posts this month, and I'm continuing to follow all the above writers to see what's next on their blog agendas. If you come across any blog posts that you've enjoyed as a writer, or that you think would be relevant to writers everywhere, why not share them with me - I'm always on the lookout for new reading material.