The ABCs of Brevity

In keeping with my KISS theme, I’ll skip a summary of my previous post and jump right into a new concise writing tip for Twitter, Facebook, and website SEO.

Take a lesson from hair stylists – and simply cut.

Words, that is.

Just like split-ends, some words just need to be removed to preserve the health of your tweets, posts, and pages. So behold the ABCs of Brevity.

Actually. By placing actually at the beginning of a sentence, you’re assuming that your readers won’t believe you otherwise. That means you not only have a problem with verbosity, but writer credibility as well. If you’re making a statement that’s difficult to believe, support it with facts, not a weak adverb.

Basically. If you’re attempting to summarize your previous sentence or paragraph, great. Go for it! Write a clear, compelling statement that makes the summary self-evident. But doing that by starting with basically is a rookie mistake.

Currently. If you’re writing about the present, you don’t need currently. All currently conveys is that you’re talking about the here and now – hence your use of present tense.

Cutting actually, basically, and currently can save you three words and 26 characters.

By the way, I take this advice to heart. I write short copy — and I have short hair, too!

Do you still need help shortening your copy? No worries! Sit tight for future posts in which I’ll continue to discuss copy conciseness. Or if you just can’t wait that long, give us a call at 410-312-0081.

–Chrissy Hoffmaster / Copywriter

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