Good Copy Versus Great Copy: How To Keep People Reading


When it comes to the copy you write for your website and other business-related marketing tools, there is a big difference between what is good and what is great, and finding a way to get to “great” will be what sets you apart from the rest of the competition. Good writing is timeless, not trendy, and basing your style on current cultural norms is a great way to ensure that your copy is only relevant for a short amount of time. Good grammar and strong vocabulary are the two key components to relevant, timeless, well-written copy.

Your copy is a window into the heart and soul of your business. You must communicate clearly and thoughtfully, remembering that the words that you use could be the difference between connecting a prospect with your company or losing that prospect. Grammar and style rules are great, but the key lies in how much you let personality come through in your words. It is possible to be both professional and personable at the same time, and the great writers know how to walk this tightrope in a way that clearly communicates while still being winsome and approachable.

You should draw the reader in from the very first moment, whether that is with an engaging and catchy headline or through a first sentence that compels a reader to stop skimming and keep reading. If you want someone to read all the way to the end, your writing must be compelling from the very beginning, or else it will fail in its ultimate objective.

Ultimately, great copy puts the reader first. From drawing him or her in with an engaging title to using language that is both accessible and informative, your copy should put the reader first in every aspect. Shift your perspective from what you think you need to say to what you believe the reader should hear. This shift in perspective, along with the grammatical and style guidelines every writer should follow, can be what pushes your good copy over the line to great copy.

By Meagan Kerlin for Vertu Marketing LLC

Was Your Pitch Rejected? Here’s Why You Should Keep Trying.


Your dream and your vision for your business are what drive you, but not everyone is going to share your passion and level of enthusiasm for what you hope to do. This can be painfully evident when you pitch an idea or try to close a sale with an investor or customer, only to come away empty handed and slightly embarrassed. Rejection stings, no matter who you are, and when you put significant time, effort and emotion into a pitch only have it fall flat….well, it isn’t fun.

There is the good news here: many of the best business ideas were first rejected, and some were even rejected multiple times. It may seem counterintuitive, but a rejection doesn’t mean you have a bad idea; it just means that you haven’t found the right investor or client yet. This is especially true if you are pitching an idea that’s novel and brand new. In fact, what were some of the most laughable ideas in the beginning have turned into some of the most recognizable brands and business on the planet. From Walt Disney to Bill Gates, many of the most successful people used the word “no” as a catalyst for more motivation, more inspiration and, eventually, more success.

Chances are, you will face a “no” at some point. Your pitch will not always land, and you will not always close a sale. Even when the stakes are incredibly high, do not let one bad pitch cause you to abandon a good idea. If you believe strongly in what you are doing, you simply have to keep fighting. You may hear 99 people say “no” before you hear one say “yes”, but it only takes one. So, while you may feel like abandoning ship and moving on to something easier and proven, keep trying. Pitch it again—you may just hear that “yes” today.

By Meagan Kerlin for Vertu Marketing LLC

Burnout: How You Can Fight Off This Career Killer


Even with immense passion for what you are doing, you may find yourself experiencing burnout. For many, burnout is an eventual career killer, an unstoppable force that slowly eats away at your joy and the meaning behind why you do what you do. Burnout is one of the main reasons why people not only leave their jobs, but also leave their entire career field and head for the hills. Entrepreneurs and small business owners are particularly susceptible to burnout, but recognizing the signs and symptoms of this problem can help you avoid traveling down a path that may ultimately result in the abandonment of your dreams.

Burnout comes from too much work and not enough of other important things in life, such as time with family and friends, sleep and self-care, just to name a few. It’s more than just working hard for a period of time, but it generally is a result of an extended period of stress, too little sleep and no breaks. It can be hard to know the difference between burnout and just a difficult period in the life of your business, but there are few signs that may indicate burnout, including:

  • Decline in your general health
  • Difficulty thinking clearly and making good decisions
  • Trouble maintaining personal relationships
  • Working all the time, including at home
  • Chronic fatigue and little sleep
  • Lack of motivation to work
  • Loss of purpose behind your work
  • Inability to do good work or do work you used to be able to do

You are the only person who can decide how to best fight burnout and save your passion for what you do. For some, implementing and following a strict schedule can help, while others need to be more intentional about maintaining work-free times with friends and family. These are not “pie in the sky” ways to make you feel better about your life, but they are ways that you can preserve your sanity and make self-care a priority again. If you are burning out, you are not your best self, and if you aren’t your best self, you probably aren’t doing good business. Be aware of what burnout looks life in your life, decide how best to fight it and work hard to protect your business and career from this dangerous issue.

By Meagan Kerlin for Vertu Marketing LLC

Impossible Goals And Alternate Realities


Like most people who start a business or launch an entrepreneurial venture, you likely started with a dream or vision of what you hoped to ultimately accomplish. Perhaps you are the accidental entrepreneur who woke up one morning to find that his or her hobby has morphed into a full-fledged business, or, perhaps, you are an individual who has yet to get started because what you want seems impossible. By nature, humans are driven by the concept of impossible goals. From manned flights to curing diseases, the unthinkable has become reality throughout history, over and over again.

Hoping to achieve something that only seems doable in an alternate reality is normal for innovative and creative individuals. For some, the connection to their impossible dream is strong, fueling the desire to keep moving forward and making every effort possible to move close to the goal. For others, they are content to visit this dream in quiet moments, continually shaping and pondering what will hopefully one day exist in this reality. Impossible goals are what drive human achievement, and like the many impossible dreamers before you, you may have to experience a bit of pain in the waiting, the hoping and the dreaming.

If you are sitting in the “not yet” phase of your impossible dream, it’s okay. Most goals aren’t reached overnight, and for you, it may be months, even years, before what you want is attainable. Every person with a goal must strike a careful balance between the pragmatic and the possible. Depending on where you are in your journey, a pragmatic approach may be best, but that does not mean that you must let go of dearly held dreams. Hold on to the things that seem impossible, even with both feet firmly planted in reality. Cherish those things, whether they are big or small, because there may come a time when you find yourself finally able to bring those goals out of an alternate reality and into fruition in real life.

By Meagan Kerlin for Vertu Marketing LLC

Easier, Better, Faster Decisions For The Indecisive and Time-Pressed


Making decisions is a critical part of life, whether you own and operate a small business or you are simply trying to decide what to order in the Chic-fil-A drive-thru. Decision making is inevitable, and for those of us who struggle with snap decisions or overthinking simple choices, this can be a major issue, both in life and in business. If you struggle with decision paralysis, there are ways that you can break this habit and train your mind to deal with choices and important decisions calmly and confidently.

When it comes to making decisions, people often say things like “Go with your gut,” or “Don’t overthink it.” This advice is all fine and dandy for many people, but you may need a more in-depth strategy to deal with this struggle. When it comes to just making a choice and moving on, whether it is a big or small decision, the following tips can make it a little easier for you:

  • Don’t take in too much information. Chances are, you can make a solid, thoughtful decision without knowing every bit of information. Ask for only the facts you need, not every single fact that exists about the situation. Information overload leads directly to decision paralysis. Process only the one or two most important facts.
  • Trust your instincts. Instinct is a powerful tool, but years of doubting that little voice can become a habit that is difficult to break. Important decisions should be made using a combination of both your instinct and information. Making decisions based on gut feelings may feel like a foreign concept to you, but it is okay to take a deep breath and trust your instincts from time to time.
  • Rely on your experience. In times when you find it difficult to move forward, think back over your past experiences. You can trust what you have been through, you can consider the results of past decisions (both good and bad) and you can use those experiences to make solid decisions today.
  • Ask for guidance. If you can’t decide and find yourself frozen in place on a certain matter, it is fine to seek the counsel of a trusted mentor or friend. In fact, an outside perspective can give you the push you need to make a choice and move forward.

If you are a person who obsesses over decisions, you are not alone. You may not be able to cure indecisiveness overnight, but with the right tools, what used to stop you in your tracks can become an easier, less painful process.

By Meagan Kerlin for Vertu Marketing LLC