So you got that anticipated call that you have been names Communications Officer at one of the nation's growing companies. You are excited over what challenges will come your way. But your heart skips a beat when you skim through the various amounts of writing your new role entails. While journalistic writing is critical for news telling purposes, writing for PR can be quite challenging because not only do you want your organization to look good, but the various different writing requirements may not be so easy to fulfil. From creative content for ads, to press releases, feature articles, website material, letters, pictches, propoals and more, this may be a daunting task. However, the beauty with writing is that, the more you do it, the better you get at it. So what tips can help you:
Open with a strong, compelling lead. When writing any type of PR copy, your first step should be coming up with an engaging lead that grabs the reader’s attention. A good lead will set up your copy in a way that doesn’t overwhelm a reader but provides just enough insight to make them want to continue. So devote some time and attention to your lead and make sure you get it right – it can make or break your piece.
Read your copy aloud. You can spend hours editing and proofreading your copy but still manage to overlook grammar mistakes, run-on sentences and awkward phrases. While many public relations writers often skip this step, reading your copy out loud before submitting to your editor or client is a helpful way to catch any errors that you might have missed.
Immerse yourself in written content. The best writers are usually the ones who are obsessed with the written word and love to read. Reading content from other writers is a simple way to help you improve the way you write. Whether you prefer books, magazines, newspapers or any type of online content, any type of reading is a great way to expand your vocabulary and enhance your overall writing skills.
Eliminate passive voice. If you’ve ever submitted copy to an editor, you know that use of the “passive voice” is one of their biggest pet peeves.
Keep writing. The last tip to help better your PR writing is an obvious one, but it’s just as important as the others: practice. From driving a car to learning a sport to perfecting an instrument, the more you do something, the better you’ll get at it. And writing is no exception. No matter how much advice or feedback you get, repetition is the easiest and most efficient way to improve your copy.