Some things Ive learnedabout writing for business and sales
(11 to 15)
11.Art is a picture of a destination
Alain de Botton and John Armstrong
Corporate storiesbrandsare, by nature, aspirational. They describe who we intend to be,
not necessarily who are are today. Corporate stories should challenge us
and inspire us.
12.We sat togetherand talked of poetry.I said, A line will take us hours maybe;
Yet if it does not seem a moments thought,Our stitching and unstitching
has been naught.W. B. Yeats
It is difficult to craft a sentence, a paragrapha one-pager that clearly and concisely
communicates. In fact, the less effort demanded of the reader, the greater the effort required by the writer. Good writing is harder than it looks
and it takes time.
13.Never use a verb other than said
to carry dialogueElmore Leonard
Keep it simple.
14.We dont comprehend large numbers
The human brain is extraordinary, but curious. We think we understand terms such as a light year
or a billon, but actually, we have no idea. To ensure people appreciate the significance of large numbers, provide context: thats more than or
about the same as.
15.Im a surrogate parent
Whether our client is literally a client, or our boss, or the board, the business writing we do is most
often on behalf of someone else. As much, then, as we regard what weve written as our baby (and
will fight, as all parents do, to protect our baby), in the end its their baby and our work is done. Much
as it infuriates us, they canand willmake it wear that stupid hat.