Deadly Sins of Marketing Copywriting

B2B Marketing Content Writer Copywriting

I do a lot of copywriting in my job: both for clients and our own promotional purposes (books, articles, etc.). Because of this, finding tips and reminders for how to be a better writer are always welcomed. I always want to make sure my writing and that of others at Fusion Marketing Partners is on target. Content is an important part of marketing strategy and writing produces content.

I came across the following post at: It talks about some important things “not do do” in your writing. The author is Bruce Coville. And he offers some sound advice. Here are his Seven Deadly Sins for Writers:

1. Dullness. No matter who you’re writing for, your work should “spark and sparkle,” according to Coville. There’s no excuse for being boring.

2. Repetition. Coville says there are two kinds of repetition. Repeating what’s been done by others, and repeating ourselves. A great book is only like itself.

3. Cliche. The words are dead on the page. They don’t say anything (of course, they can clearly say to the reader that the writer has no imagination).

4. Sloth. Sit down and do the work. Use what Ray Bradbury calls “ass-glue” to stay in your chair. Stretch yourself. Make yourself better.

5. Inattention. This comes from not thinking things through. Remember, no character moves in isolation.

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6. Perfectionism. This will stop you in your tracks. It is the enemy of the good, of completion, of achievement. Coville suggests using the first draft to “vomit” on the page. It won’t be much good, but you can’t edit something, until it’s on the page.

7. Clumsiness. This is lack of craft. Learn the ins and outs of the language. What works and what’s clunky. Editors and agents will spot clumsiness a mile away.

If I had to add an eighth deadly sin it would be “lack of focus.” If your copywriting has a marketing purpose, whether it be generating awareness, leads or revenue, you must focus like a laser at achieving that objective.

Christopher Ryan
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