Content Writing – 5 Tips to Lean, Mean Copy

Writing tightToday’s writers are well aware of the concept of writing tight. This is applicable whether your write nonfiction or fiction. It’s all about writing lean and mean – make every word count. But, in copywriting and content writing this concept is even more important.

It’s about using words strategically to motivate the reader to take the action you want. More specifically, it’s about motivating the reader to say YES to your call-to-action, whether it be requesting more information, signing up for your mailing list, attending your webinar, or some other action.

In an article at AWAI (American Writers and Artists, Inc.), it gives some good points on how to get your content ready for the ‘ax’ phase.


1. Don’t worry about tightening your copy until you’re sure the copy is clear and conveys your intent. This may take one or two initial edits.

The first couple of editing rounds should be focused on the message itself. It needs to convey exactly what you want and it needs to be easy to read.

2. Watch for ‘unbelievable’ claims. Suppose you write, “Following the steps in this program guarantees a minimum of $20,000 in income every month, year after year.” Chances are the reader will become suspicious. There goes your sale or YES to some other desired action you’re striving for.

If the content doesn’t sound believable, you’ll lose the prospect.

3. Check for engagement. The AWAI article mentioned not to make the copy sound too academic. This might include industry terminology, too many statistics, and so on. You don’t want the reader to get stuck on a word or boggled down with too many statistics. Again, the point is for easy reading that’s motivating.

4. Check for awkward content. You want your copy to read smooth, be easy to understand, and be engaging. It must lead the reader down the YES path. If you have an obstacle in the road, guess what, it’ll make the reader pause. This is never a good thing.

5. Once you cover the four elements above, then it’s on to cutting unnecessary words, sentences, and even paragraphs, if need be. Just keep in mind that when ‘cutting’ away, the copy needs to remain smooth, easy to read, and motivating.

To read the AWAI article, go to:
Making Every Word Count for More Convincing Copy

Tips on content marketing

The Social Media Marketing Smorgasbord and How to Navigate It
2 Simple Strategies to Website Traffic and Authority
Getting Visitors to Say YES to Your CTAs

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This article was originally published by Karen Cioffi at: