emulateThis is probably the biggest writing secret I have ever given away.

I’m going to teach you how to write anything. Anything you need to write, this is how you do it:

It’s a simple “how to do anything” tenet. Watch how someone you admire does something and emulate their process. It’s no different when it comes to writing. Become a “reverse engineer.”

When I wrote in the corporate world, I had clients that ran the gamut from drug companies to non-profits. I had to match the disparate tones and voices of each industry. And, to this day, whenever I get assigned a freelance writing project, I always ask for an example of the client’s previous work. There’s no shame that game — referring to examples to hone your own copy.

Here are the steps to reverse engineer a piece of content so that it achieves your purpose and sounds like you! This works for anything from About pages to sales pages to blog posts to newsletters.

This is probably the biggest writing secret I have ever given away.

I’m going to teach you how to write anything. Anything you need to write, this is how you do it:

It’s a simple “how to do anything” tenet. Watch how someone you admire does something and emulate their process. It’s no different when it comes to writing. Become a “reverse engineer.”

When I wrote in the corporate world, I had clients that ran the gamut from drug companies to non-profits. I had to match the disparate tones and voices of each industry. And, to this day, whenever I get assigned a freelance writing project, I always ask for an example of the client’s previous work. There’s no shame that game — referring to examples to hone your own copy.

Here are the steps to reverse engineer a piece of content so that it achieves your purpose and sounds like you! This works for anything from About pages to sales pages to blog posts to newsletters.

This is Jeopardy!

The answers are already written. It’s your job to come up with the questions. And then, answer those questions with your own content in your own voice.

Here’s an illustration:

Note the structure: Take a look at my About page. Now, I’m not going to pretend this is the end-all-be-all (in fact, I’ll probably revise it yet again before this article goes live), but we can use it as an example. I start off with a my big, bold “I believe” statement. The I go into my dream for anyone who comes to my site with a passing interest in writing better to support their business. Then I go into what I believe I can help my clients do. And then why I believe I can help them do it. So let’s take that much and start the process…

As the reverse engineer, it’s your job to distill my content down to the questions you think my content answers.

You could start by asking yourself “What is my big, bold ‘I believe’ statement?” “What’s my big hope for my prospects?” “What do my prospects need to know about my journey?”

Write your answers.

Tone your content so it makes sense for your business. It is playful or determined, passionate or high-end. However you define it, find your tone and work your text so it starts to feel right to you.

Use your own “voice.” The only way this reverse engineering pursuit is going to work for you and your business is if you write in your own voice. Make sure it sounds like you. A couple ways to find your voice: Write how you talk, tell a story, write to one person: your ideal client.

I want to know what you make of this process. Which piece of content are you trying to write better? Who do you think is doing content really well, whom you want to emulate? Let me know in the comments below.

 

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