Adapting Journalistic Skills for SEO and Web WritingPublished: November 20, 2013
Web editors, TV producers, reporters— you already have the skills you need to transition to a more up-and-coming field.
Maybe we won’t say “dying industry,” but newsroom consolidation is here. You might be part of the shrinking staff tomorrow. Might. But for a little peace of mind, basic SEO knowledge can help you two-fold:
- if you’re downsized from your journalism job, you already have the tools for a backup career in a more stable field— content marketing.
- Knowing these concepts can also help you repurpose content for the web for your journalism job, making you a more valuable employee
Certainly, there are complexities of SEO copywriting in marketing and blogging. But, the most basic, important skills are the ones you’ve been honing for years and that you could learn with this seo service in Singapore.
Here’s how the journalistic concepts you already know will help you write SEO content, and how to adapt.
1. You know how to write simply.
As a journalist, you’re communicating with the masses. So you write on a 5th grade level, so everyone can understand you. Kudos, you know how to make your message widely accessible.
Adapt the skill for SEO: Be aware that your audience as a marketer might be different. If your target demographic is significantly more educated, don’t talk down to them.
2. You can whittle down your writing and be concise
Journalism is to-the-point, so you know how to eject useless words from your copy. And that’s good for web writing, because people don’t like to read useless text. Being economical with words means the ones you do use have value.
Adapt the skill for SEO: Have a little more fun– as long as you’re still being economic. Instead of using the simplest word, try a more flavorful synonym. Most importantly: use action verbs. They’re powerful.
3. You understand the science behind inverted pyramid
You know the most important details go first, just in case people stop reading. Again, web readers don’t want to read more than they have to, so give them what they want.
Adapt the skill for SEO: People scan the web. So, you can make all the important points stand out without them necessarily having to be at the top. Use subheadings. Bold main ideas. Link to further information. You still want people to be able to get the point right away, but you have more freedom to change what they see first.
Example: this post on 1-word writing tips. It’s a list. Not all 5 of these tips are in the lede, but they do all stand our on first scan.
4. You can craft a story
You know the difference in a color quote and a fact with quotation marks thrown around it. You can do a 30-minute interview with someone, and pluck out their most important, most compelling statement.
Adapt the skill for SEO: As long as you’re focusing on the key elements of a story, you can play with style a bit more. Be creative if you’d like. Or not. Either way, you’ve got the basic idea.
BONUS POINTS! TV producer? You might be ahead of the curve, because:
5. You know how to write a teaser
“Coming up: this simple tool can save your child’s life.”
Cool, all the mama bears will be back after the commercial break. If you can keep people at the screen, you can make people pay attention, one of the most vital tools for an SEO writer.
The more reliable your content, the more people will engage with it. Therefore, engagement is a key feature of SEO. Social media crowdsources the vetting of your content. Get clicks, get shares, Google knows you’re producing something worth seeing.
Adapt the skill for SEO: You also need to deliver. A great teaser headline might draw people in, but if they click your story and the content doesn’t deliver what you promised, your audience will immediately close it, bloating your bounce rate. Say goodbye to that search boost, because now Google knows your content is a sham.
Think you can you master both writing styles?