Business Writing Virtual Master Class

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Wednesday, October 11, 2017 - 12:00pm
3 hours

12:00-1:05 PM

Enthrall: 7 secrets of storytelling

Through evocative storytelling we have the power to connect with our audience, whether in a press release, a meeting or onstage. Novelists, screenwriters and playwrights deliberately employ narrative tools to create compelling stories, transcendent moments and page-turners. Use these same tangible tools and transform corporate communiqués into gripping and memorable stories.

Key Highlights:

  • Use the top three rhetorical devices to make any story be both hard-hitting and Tweetable
  • Identify and use a magical object for storytelling impact
  • Construct your stories with insight that catches readers' breath
  • Hunt for the compelling story hidden within the dullest of topics
Justina Chen is the former speechwriter for the president of Microsoft Entertainment & Devices

1:10-2:05 PM

Just say what you mean

You write to make things happen: to motivate action, drive sales or influence change. To get that kind of response from your audience, you've got to speak their language. Since corporate-ese is no one's mother tongue, you may need to do some translating. In this session, you'll learn what it takes to be a plainspoken voice of reason for your organization.

Key Highlights:

  • Commiserate over hilariously complicated messages—some made up, some sadly true
  • Study and imitate some of the best models for clarity and brevity
  • Identify words that don't belong in your audience-focused vocabulary
  • Practice translating complex messages into simple ones (and vice versa, just for fun)
Beth Nyland is lead instructor at StoryStudio Chicago

2:10-3:00 PM

Creating compelling copy: The secret, yet simple approach to nailing it quickly

What makes copy compelling? Well, what stops YOU in your tracks? Guaranteed it isn't the use of dead words like 'solutions' and 'paradigm'. Great copy starts with simplicity and then delivers an unexpected yet emotional punch to the reader—inspiring an action, a response, a share, and more. But it's not always easy to deliver, is it?

Good news: Through improvisational writing and before-and-after copy exercises you will be able to successfully tap the creative corners of your mind—even when you're under extreme pressure to perform. These methods will allow you to quickly write copy people want to read, share and act on.

Key Highlights:

  • Free association exercises to let the words come freely
  • Creative translation exercises to breathe new life into your words
  • How to uncover hidden words and topics by using unconventional inspiration
  • The creative process that transformed the marketing of James Hardie Building Products, BASF & Firestone
Mary Olivieri is the SVP and executive creative director of CBD Marketing