“Although I don’t think of myself as a bad writer, Susan’s blog posts have increased my engagement on LinkedIn drastically, which is what I was hoping for.” – Sean Clegg, Founder of Tiny Jungle
Sean Clegg, of Tiny jungle, uses nature and natural elements to help people be healthier and more productive in their workspaces.
And he’s using LinkedIn to raise awareness of his business. As part of this Sean wrote a blog post (LinkedIn article) to inform, inspire and educate people about aspects of biophilia (the innate tendency for humans to seek connections with nature). And to get conversations going so people would build relationships with him, ultimately booking a consultation.
But his blog post wasn’t as good as he wanted it to be. So he asked me to improve it.
Sean’s blog post
Here’s what he wrote: Sean’s original blog post
Sean’s post has some great features:
- The title is intriguing. So I was curious to know more and wanted to keep reading.
- It’s conversational rather than formal, so I relaxed into reading the post and enjoyed it.
- And he uses short paragraphs and bold words which break up the text nicely.
All these things made the text easier to read and as a result Sean did get quite a bit of engagement on LinkedIn.
But he could have got more…
How I improved Sean’s blog post
I improved these things:
1. Title – it may be engaging but it doesn’t match the body text. While you eventually reach the part about Sean’s outdoor office (i.e. the walk and talk meetings) there is a lot about his personal journey first. And this disconnect is confusing.
2. Structure – Sean jumps around with his subject matter rather than flowing logically from point to point. So it was harder to read and understand than it should have been. This tends to happen if you start writing before you plan – all your ideas compete for attention in your mind and because you don’t want to miss anything out, onto the paper it goes. Seriously, planning first will help you structure your post.
So I reordered the text, split the post in two and gave each a relevant title: 1) Tiny Jungle: the birth of a business, 2) Walk and talk meetings: what’s the point?
3. Number of words – Sean’s post is waffly! Sure, it’s conversational, but unlike a face-to-face chat where unnecessary words can be part of the experience (though not always – ever heard the phrase ‘why use ten words when you could use two?’), when written down they hinder the reader.
So I removed superfluous words…
E.g. changing “The start of the meeting began at an oddly modern but environmentally conscious shoreline pier…”
To “We began at an oddly modern but environmentally conscious shoreline pier…”
Which do you find easier to read?
4. Call to action (CTA) – There isn’t one in Sean’s post! So I didn’t know what to do after reading it. Should I leave a comment? Or was I meant simply to enjoy the reading experience? You must always make the next step obvious to people so it’s easier for them to do what you want.
So I added a clear CTA at the end of both blog posts. As Sean wanted to engage people in conversation, I asked relevant questions at the end to encourage them. With the explicit instruction to leave comments.
And the final verdict?
“As a result of the great quality writing that Susan did for me, a prospective client visited my LinkedIn profile and contacted me. This has led to a wonderful opportunity to work on an exciting project with a reputable university. Thanks Susan” – Sean Clegg, Founder of Tiny Jungle