3 (well, 4) free tools for writing better blog posts

Becoming a better writer isn’t easy, but there are tools that can give you a leg-up.

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There are 2.75 million blog posts written and posted every single day. I’ll let that sink in for a second.

I wrote my first blog post in 2003 and despite working in content for as long as I have, it’s still a lot to swallow. With the sheer volume of content out there, mediocrity simply isn’t an option.

Becoming a better writer isn’t easy, but there are tools that can give you a leg-up. And if you find you need some more help, I’d love to see what I can do (drop the team a line here).

Step 1: Start with a blog post idea generator

Not sure where to begin? You’re not the first. As long as you’ve got a vague idea of what you want to write about, this little tool will start you off with a blog post title.

Have a go on the HubSpot blog post idea generator

Step 2: Let yourself get distracted – but only a little

Ever wonder why you have your best ideas in the shower? It’s because being a little distracted helps you think creatively. According to a peer-reviewed study from University of Chicago:

“a moderate level of ambient noise is conducive to creative cognition”.

I’ve always worked in shared workspaces, which can provide distracting environments. For the first few years of my career, I really struggled to work on meatier copywriting projects.

Then, in 2012, I heard about Coffitivity. It’s an app that plays the noise of a cafe in the background. That’s it. That’s all it does.

When I’m in a loud environment, I pop my headphones in and transport myself to the focused anonymity of a coffee shop down the road. Definitely worth trying for yourself.

Try Coffitivity

Step 3: Get a second opinion from Hemingway

Grammatical correctness is more than an appropriately-placed apostrophe.

If you’re not 100% confident* in your copywriting, paste your first draft in Hemingway. It highlights what you need to change and why; allowing you to hit ‘publish’ on copy that reflects your best voice.

*and even if you are (complacency kills)

Use Hemingway

Bonus for freelance copywriters: WorkAbout

I keep hearing this crazy stat that by 2020, half of the American workforce will be freelance in some way. It’s a swell I noticed a few years ago, and one that’s showing no sign of slowing down.

Freelancing comes with a wealth of opportunities for individuals and their clients. Having said that, I can’t deny two big obstacles:

  1. Where should freelancers work?
  2. How can they beat the loneliness often felt by sole traders?

A friend of mine is working on an app that tackles both of these issues and a heck of a lot more. The app locates the best public spaces to work in; and connects you with other freelancers and potential clients nearby. I’ve seen the roadmap for Workabout and while I can’t say anything specific just yet*, now is the time to hop aboard.

*let’s just say you’ve definitely heard of a company it’s working with

Join WorkAbout

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