On Writing and Writers

27 Mar

I’m a communications consultant. I’m a brand positioning strategist. I’m a media relations expert.  I’m a public relations pro, with 15+ years at top agencies.  But first and foremost, I’m a writer.

As a writer and consultant, I counsel clients from the perspective of someone who filters every public and business communication I encounter — from product solution sheets, technical whitepapers, websites, op-ed articles, blogs or social media pages — from the point of view of, “how does this play?” I’m noting who is writing it, and who is going to read it.  How will they react? How could they have done it better?

Now, everyone writes.  My clients write clear memos. Their brochures demonstrate how their products meet a customer need. Their PowerPoint presentations successfully get their sales people and executives from point to point.

When I was with a big internatinal PR agency, my wife would sometimes ask me why clients paid all this money for something that, frankly, everyone can do themselves.  The simple answer is that business people are focused on other things.

Writers are different. We are focused, in the words of the construction trade magazine publisher where I had my first internship, on “making it sing.”  And like a good song, good writing does more than communicate — it sparks ideas, instigates converation and spurs action.  Good writing moves people — and that’s good business.

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