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Writing for the web

Page history last edited by Richard Bailey 8 years, 5 months ago

Notes and links: 9 November 2011


Evolution of the news release


'PR is not about your boss seeing your company on TV. It's about your buyers seeing your company on the Web.'

David Meerman Scott 2010 


Social media release



Why is it needed?


  • To reinvent the news release for the social media age
  • To broaden its reach beyond journalists to bloggers etc 



Writing for the web


John Morkes and Jakob Nielsen: Concise, scannable, objective: How to write for the web


'Keep it short


  • Use short words, short paragraphs, bulleted lists and short pages'

Barr et al 2010, p5 


  • 'Delete fluff.  Direct, objective text  - not promotional copy - is more helpful to the site visitor, and readers perceive it as more trustworthy.' (p7)






Everyone loves a picnic, which makes this deluxe picnic basket set the perfect gift. You'll find it's fully loaded with plates, glasses, flatware, and napkins for four, plus a bread knife, a cutting board, salt and pepper shakers, and a corkscrew. It even comes with a fleece blanket for the family to sit on. Buy it now for only $49.99.




This deluxe picnic basket set makes the perfect gift. It's fully loaded with:


  • Plates, glasses, flatware, and napkins for four
  • Bread knife and cutting board
  • Salt and pepper shakers
  • Corkscrew
  • Fleece blanket

Buy it now - $49.99 




Search engine optimisation


'As a content creator, your best SEO techniques are (1) to write information-rich copy that people will want to read and (2) to figure out which words people are likely to use in searches, and then embed those keywords throughout your copy.'



'Good SEO copywriting makes your page more readable for both search engines and humans.  (p395)



'Optimize your site for people first - through clear, concise writing - and for search engines second.' (p395)


Copywriting for SEO


  1. Select the best keywords
  2. Add keywords to your page copy
  3. Incorporate links
  4. Use keywords in page titles and metatags 




Review this postgraduate class blog with articles by students. What do you think of the themes and writing style.


Now look at this blog about PR at Leeds Met. 


  • Your task is to write a short, 200 word article explaining why you chose to study public relations in Leeds.
  • The best article(s) - as selected by the site's editor - will be published in your name. 


Email your articles to rbailey@pobox.com by 8pm today. You will all receive feedback. 




Key Source


Chris Barr et al (2010) The Yahoo! Style Guide: The Ultimate Sourcebook for Writing, Editing, and Creating Content for the Digital World, Macmillan


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