Copywriting 911

A brilliant person is brilliant in anything. Take Einstein for example. There are many outstanding scientists who remain completely unknown for the masses, because their field of study is very particular, and 90% of people will never be educated enough to catch at least the basics.

When it comes to Albert Einstein, it’s quite another matter. The genius’ wonderful ability to clarify most complicated concepts in plain humorous English gained Einstein the reputation of a wise, self-ironic and pleasant person, contributing much to the popularization of his ideas. Though not related directly to copywriting, Einstein’s maxims are universal and can be applied to the art of content creation as well. Bet he’d make a great blogger ;) Just try on his 5 selected ideas, and become a five times more successful writer.

1. Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius – and a lot of courage – to move in the opposite direction.

Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler.

There are tons of articles accenting the importance of simplicity, but some authors still believe the longer and heavier sentences they write, the more competent they sound. If you agree with this, there’s an excellent bullshit generating tool online to help you appear a real expert. Anyway, be ready to face it: this kind of stuff is often hard to read and unlikely to be published (unless you do it yourself). Try and express your ideas in a simpler way so that even newbies can catch your point. Don’t put a spoke in your readers’ wheel, – choose simple words and syntax.

2. You see, wire telegraph is a kind of a very, very long cat. You pull his tail in New York and his head is meowing in Los Angeles. Do you understand this? And radio operates exactly the same way: you send signals here, they receive them there. The only difference is that there is no cat.

Actually that’s my favorite citation. No one could put it so clear and briefly as Einstein did. The rule of thumb is: the more complicated the object is the easier your explanation should be. Do remember your target audience and how much it is familiar with the object. A typical example is a story in which a little boy came to his dad and asked how to write the figure “8”. “That’s quite simple, my boy. It’s the same with ∞ turned to 1/2 π” So, be as clear as you can while talking about your ideas, especially if they are innovative, or if your audience doesn’t have an appropriate background.

3. The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing.

Of course, if a person knows letters and can write, he/she is able to read as well, however, some authors neglect reading, justifying themselves with something like “I‘m not a reader, I’m a writer.” The fact is that if you aren’t interested in anything, thinking your genius is all-sufficient already, you’ll be surprised how soon that magic spring of your creativity will dry. Develop your curiosity, be thirsty for knowledge and always slake this thirst. Visit the sites of your niche, read blogs and participate in forums’ discussions. If you have a website, it’s a must to know the best sources in the niche, keeping up to date. Moreover, there are a great deal of truly good writers on the Web, and you can get inspiration from their brilliance and professionalism.

4. A person starts to live when he can live outside himself.

Try to look at your writing from outside. Imagine you are a severe editor who never puts up with mediocrity and dilettantism in writing, let alone illiteracy or inclination to tautology. Do you like your own work? Or maybe there is still something to be changed? However you can’t rely only on yourself, especially if you are a beginner. If you know someone who can edit your work, or at least review it, don’t hesitate. Other people, provided they are well-educated and familiar with the topic, can be very helpful while editing.

5. The only real valuable thing is intuition.

If you follow these Albert Einstein’s techniques properly, there will come the day when you needn’t spend hours on cutting and editing, you will find the right words, syntax or topic by intuition. There is only one way to develop you intuition as a writer: you should improve your skills constantly, writing at least several sentences every day and reading the articles of pros. Remember that intuition is grounded on experience. So, take your time to gain it.

Meanwhile, whatever comes, don’t forget about another Einstein’s maxim:

Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.

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