An editor’s guide to writing: Blast through the clutter, make your content irresistible to readers

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What You’ll Learn:: 

Like you, journalists every day face brutal competition for readers. Michael Sebastian, a veteran of the street wars of Chicago newspapering, unveils the tricks that will get employees, customers and reporters reading your memos, stories and news releases.

Michael offers practical tips to get readers to click through your content:

  • Do you know the “one breath” rule? Michael shows how it leads to headlines that lure readers:“Don’t leave yourself gasping for air when you read your headlines.”
  • He warns against verbiage and long corporate names in headlines and ledes. He explains how numbers, stats and lists, are your best friends: “List stories work,” he says. “People love lists. Don’t fear the list.”
  • Michael shows how to interview people so they talk about the most interesting things they do.
  • He suggests how to humanize lifeless stories about campaigns or computers. “You have to tell a story about people,” he says.
  • He tells you why good writing means good SEO, and offers three tools for writers and editors to use.
  • He demonstrates how to use keywords without overdoing it. And he puts you in the shoes of a Google searcher.

From zippy ledes to eliminating jargon, Michael gives you a dynamic new direction. Plus, he’s a load of fun. Don’t miss this one!

October 2011

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Presenter bio: 

Michael Sebastian is the founding editor of PR He’s also filled several editorial roles at Ragan Communications, including staff writer and online community manager. Before joining Ragan, Michael was a newspaper reporter, freelance music writer, and editorial assistant.