Content marketing is a tough gig. You’ve got nothing to fall back on but your words, so those words have got to be perfect. If they aren’t, then you’re the one who’s going to take the flack when the general public spot the errors. There’s no need to worry, though. These nine tools are perfect for catching any problems before they go into print.
1. After The Deadline
Editing in a hurry? Every writer has been there. When you need feedback quickly, use After The Deadline. All you have to do is paste your work in, and it will show you instantly where the problems are. Make the changes according to their suggestions, and you’ll be back in business before you know it.
2. Australian Help
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Australian Help has a huge cache of information that any writer should keep bookmarked. There’s a plagiarism detector that stops you accidentally publishing work that sounds like someone else’s. There’s also word and letter counters, which are always helpful. Their best resource though is their grammar guide. It’s one of the most comprehensive around, and will be able to answer any of your tricky questions.
3. UK Writings
When editing, you really need a second person to do a pass through. Often though, you’re on your own when you’re working on a piece. If you need an editor, try hiring one from UK Writings. They know their stuff, and can do an edit for you no matter how tight your deadline is. It’ll save you a lot of time and effort in the long run.
4. Easy Word Count
Knowing your word count is more important than you’d think. Without it, you can easily go over or under your limit, meaning your content isn’t being filled with the right amount of information for your readers. Get a quick count of your words by pasting your work into Easy Word Count. You’ll have the feedback you need quickly and without fuss.
5. Clarity Jargon Buster
It’s so easy to accidentally slip buzzwords, jargon or corporate business speak into your articles. You may know what you’re talking about, but the average reader isn’t going to get it. Avoid alienating them by running your work through this Clarity Jargon Buster. It will flag any buzzwords it finds, so you can edit them out before publication.
6. Grammar Checker
Good grammar is important, whether you’re writing a blog, Facebook post, or product description. You’d think most people won’t notice simple errors, but you’d be amazed at how quickly they can be picked up on. Avoid this by running your writing through Grammar Checker. It only takes a minute or two, but it’s a minute worth spending to save making corrections later.
WordRake is a must have for anyone who uses Microsoft Word. It sits in the task bar, and when you click a button it goes through your writing, making real time edits and suggested changes. It tightens up your writing, knowing that less is always more when it comes to content.
StackEdit is a fantastic Markdown editor that lots of bloggers and writers use, thanks to its ease of use. You can create really professional looking pieces with it, and it even has inbuilt spell checking to grab those last minute errors. Once you’re done writing, you can send your work straight to your blog.
9. Grammar Check
This grammar checking tool can perform a really deep analysis of your writing, if you’re willing to subscribe. The tool can find harder to notice issues, such as run on sentences or dangling modifiers. If you really want an in depth look at how you’re writing, this is the tool you’ll want to try out.
Editing tips for content marketers
Every writer could use a few more tips on editing their work. Here’s some ideas to try out when you’re tweaking your writing.
- Work from the bottom up: Reading from the top down, as you intend the reader to, can mean you actually miss errors as you’re following the story. Read from the bottom up and you’ll catch more errors, as they’ll be much more obvious to you.
- Leave it a day or so: If you can, leave your work for a day or even more. When you come back to it, you’ll be able to read it with a fresh pair of eyes. You’ll be much more likely to spot errors that you hadn’t seen before.
- Have someone else read for you: You’re close to your writing. When you edit, you’ll miss problems as you’ll know what you meant to say, so your eye skips over it. If you can, have another person read it. They’ll have some distance, so they can spot errors you can’t.
- Look for the passive voice: Are you saying ‘Benefits of our product are…’ instead of ‘Our product will benefit you by…’? If you are, switch it up. The passive voice makes your arguments weaker, as you’re distancing yourself from the point. Make your writing involve the reader and excite them.
- Ditch the adverbs: Look for words that end in -ly, the words that aren’t as descriptive as you think they are. The girl doesn’t run quickly, she sprints. The door didn’t shut noisily, it banged shut. Make your writing stronger by replacing the adverbs you find.
- Be positive: Your job is to appeal to the reader, and show them just why they want your product. That’s why you have to nix any negative words from your writing. Find any cases where you’re focusing on the negative, and change them up. You don’t want to give readers reasons to feel down. You want them to feel buoyed up and ready to make changes.
With these tools and tips, you’ll start to see a real difference in the way you edit. The whole process will be a lot quicker and smoother. Now you’ll be putting out copy that really packs a punch to the reader.