To suggest that fake news is novel, new, or a secret suddenly revealed is naïve. The intentional act of exaggerating content and spreading false information for a desired effect has been in practice since long before print was first pressed to paper. Fortunately, so too has integrity and a desire to encourage the advancement of an informed public.

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Remember back in the old days when a Yellow Pages listing and a well-placed advertisement in the newspaper were all it took to market yourself? If so, you’re definitely showing your age right now. But more importantly, if you haven’t already, forget the marketing tactics that you used in the 90s and 2000s.

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There’s something terribly wrong with the current state of content marketing.

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Q: I’ve been trying to produce content that bolsters my online profile and optimizes my search engine rankings. I’ve studied nearly all of the online tips and incorporated the strategies of various thought-leaders into my own web content, but I haven’t seen any improvement. What gives?

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There’s a tendency to view marketing campaigns through a lens of cynicism. A lot of it has to do with the unwelcomed ubiquity of ads in every aspect of modern life. People see advertisements as daily hassles from people they assume are trying to sell them something they don’t need. The truth is that this assessment isn’t always too far off the mark.

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While today’s world of content marketing isn’t as Wild West lawless as it used to be, it’s still safe to say the spectrum of options is long and varied. Whether your internal team handles your content needs (blogs, copywriting, etc.), you scour Fiverr looking for the most qualified candidate for one-off jobs, or you invest part of your budget into quality content marketing from a professional outside source, you get what you pay for.

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When was the last time that you were so moved by an advertisement that you were immediately interested in their product? That inspirational moment that motivated you to spend your money on a product was likely their call-to-action, or CTA.

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I used to think I was a great writer.

Of course, that was back in eighth grade, before I had any serious education or formal training in the craft. Back then, all it took to be a great writer (in my mind, at least) was a great vocabulary and a desire to cram big words into small thoughts.

Ahh, it was a simpler time. You can imagine my surprise when I received feedback in my first serious writing class.

I saw red. Lots of red.

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Here at Words by a Pro, we work with narratives. It’s our job to write stories surrounding brands. Orders often run along the lines of “informative but entertaining” or “professional but accessible.”

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Regardless of your political opinion, it’s safe to say 2017 has already been a year worth remembering. A controversial wave started rolling in last year, and the American people are surfing its surface around the web in all different directions.

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