The Hemingway Guide to Content Marketing

by Eloqua on February 6, 2012 in Content Marketing

Ernest Hemingway is one of the best writers of all time, but a great content marketer?

Sure, Hemingway wasn’t out to warm up leads or sell a product. (Well, maybe books.) Still, Hemingway’s writing process reveals great tips for content marketing.

Below we suggest some words of wisdom from Hemingway you can apply to your content marketing process.

1. Don’t Over Think It
“…I learned not to think about anything I was writing from the time I stopped writing until I started again the next day.”

Hemingway learned how to turn off. This is a particularly tough lesson for marketers, who often fixate on their work. Yet, turning off can help you find clarity that will make your work the next week better.

2. Get Good Editors
Ezra Pound. Gertrude Stein.

Hemingway’s remarkable talent often overshadows the stellar advice he received. This was a guy who hung around with F. Scott Fitzgerald.

Having good editors, fellow sharp marketers, whom you can bounce ideas off of is invaluable. Find someone who will give you real feedback on your content.

3. Read
“When I was writing, it was necessary for me to read after I had written. If you kept thinking about it, you would lose the thing you were writing before you could go on with it the next day.”

Hemingway read some of the greats as he worked on his own novels.

If you’re stuck on a particular piece of content, consider taking some time off to ingest other’s content. This will give you time away from your work (remember tip 1) and learn from peers. It might inspire you.

4. Get Out Among People
“It was easier to think if I was walking or doing something or seeing people doing something that they understood.”

It can be easy to forget that your content is going to be read by people, not just buyers and businesses. It’s important to remember those human emotion, reason and traits.

An easy way to remind yourself is to just get out of the office and be around people.

5. Remember Your Success
“I would stand and look out over the roofs of Paris and think, ‘Do not worry. You have always written before and you will write now.’”

When you’re stuck on a project or a campaign falls flat, you get discouraged. It happens to everyone.

Don’t get too down. Remember what’s worked for you in the past. What did you do differently? What made it successful? Remember you’ve done it before. You can do it again.

Any authors or thinkers inspire your content marketing process? Leave a comment and let us know.

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