10 Ethical guidelines for effective communication online
Writing relevant research articles, reports and surveys is a great method to create exposure for yourself and your Internet projects. In fact, I would consider the online world one of the best PR, PA and marketing tools you can use.
Here are 9 very basic guidelines to ensure quality, integrity and readability of your articles to be published online.
1. Write serving a specific purpose.
Before writing an article, ask yourself what problem it will help others solve. Some of the more common issues people deal with revolve around a lack of something, whether it's time, money, self-confidence or just joy in life. How will your article help with these issues.
2. Grab the attention of your readers early.
If possible, intend to "hook" your reader right from the beginning. Ideally, your title should be the hook. When creating the title, ask yourself if it would make you want to read the article. Your first paragraph should also serve as a hook, as well as a general introduction to the article content.
3. Write to one person only.
Forget the fact your article will be read by many people and write as if you were addressing one specific person. Think of him in front of you and tell him your story.
4. Keep the a very clear and logical sequence.
This is where it shows if you have done your homework in school.
If you have not, you should better look at who writes good and outstanding reports and copy and refine its basic writing structure.
5. Keep your paragraphs short.
Ideally, 4-6 lines per paragraph is what you want to shoot for.
It looks and feels much more appealing to the reader to see "bite-sized" paragraphs.
6. Inspire action in your article.
If your article is, in fact, intended to solve a common problem, give people practical suggestions for taking action.
7. Let others understand your story.
When possible, create analogies with other situations or concepts that your readers can easily refer to and identify with. Make it easy for your reader to relate to your ideas. That will also make it easier for your reader to apply your ideas in their life.
Summarize the article in the final paragraphs. Briefly review the main points of your article, and provide guidance to your readers in how they can now transfer and apply the insight derived into their life or professional interests.
9. Don't forget the resource box.
Provide a brief resource box following your article. It should tell a little about you, your credentials and your organization, how you serve others and how to contact you. Be sure to include your URL and email address with an invitation to contact you or visit your site.
10. Give reference.
Provide as much annotated reference and links to other relevant content, sources, and complementary articles available online as possible.
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