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Why Your Harvard-Educated Writer Doesn't Attract Links

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Quality copy is supposed to attract links, so why don't you have any?

At last Tuesday's keynote panel at SES New York (I know you're sick of hearing about it, but bear with me), Jonathan Blum, Principal at Blumsday LLC, lamented the fact that beautiful writing doesn't attract traffic. He said his heart was broken that gorgeous writing was largely ignored.

Co-panelist Brad Hill, Director at Weblogs, Inc. / AOL was not heart-broken. And why should he be when sites like Engadget are so popular?

Thankfully, there are average folk who went to no-name schools in the sticks of North Carolina to provide the answer. Here it is. Brace yourself, Blum:

So-called "beautiful" writing sucks. If you need a Shakespeare dictionary to understand what the hell an uppity Harvard grad is waxing insane about, then it's crap.

There's a new beautiful in town and it's called blogging. It's short, sweet, and to the point. Blogs don't bog down with over-cooked insights from an academic type who has far too much knowledge and very little real-world application.

In my world, Engadget is beautiful writing. Lisa Barone is a beautiful writer. It's not just words, either. Ruffles and Stuff has glorious visual tutorials, and brands like KT Tape provide videos that help me tape my shoulder without needing a physical therapy degree. It's not Spielberg and it doesn't have to be. The four rolls of tape in my house right now are proof.

If beauty is in the eye of the beholder, then writing is in the eye of the reader. The reader has spoken, and casual content is the new black.

If you want content that attracts links, traffic, and conversions, skip the New York fashion show and go straight to the department store. Find out what the kids are wearing these days and give it to them.


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