We all have at least one great lash or business article to offer, even if it’s our first time! Here’s some simple steps to get you started quickly and easily. It’s all in the planning!
1. How to start your article
Any article or story usually has a start, middle and an end. It’s that simple.
Needs to immediately draw your reader in so they know what’s coming and they’ll want to read on!
Pack it with exciting content that offers value to the reader and is worth their time and effort for your time and effort.
Summarise or draw a conclusion by affirming the purpose of your article or encourage your reader to try something new!
Before you start writing
Make some notes about what you must cover.
You may find that it naturally belongs in the middle section. Once you know the outline, writing an introduction and conclusion will be easier.
2. Draft a gripping article
Your opening statement and paragraph is important. You want inspire your readers to engage with you and read on.
Look back on how I started this piece. I wrote;
‘We all have at least one great lash or business article to offer, even if it’s our first time! Here’s some simple steps to get you started quickly and easily’.
You clicked here as you’re interested in writing an article and you are looking for help. You may not be sure if you can do it so I’m telling you that you can and that the steps are quick and simple.
You can open with a story, an anecdote, or ask a question. Here’s a couple of articles that I wrote in 2016 that were published that year. The topics had been queried in several forums with lots of responses, so I knew that there was a lot of interest and I thought that I could help offering my experience or offering options.
First example: This article offered advice about whether to treat brides so close to their big day. I opened with a catchy headline, ‘Here comes the bride, all bleary eyed!’ Not all the original words to the song, but catchy nonetheless.
I gave my blushing bride (twice) story and explained that after years of issue-free beauty treatments, my brows were burned by a hot wax treatment the month before my wedding day. That made me rethink my treatment schedule for sure.
I offered advice about setting timescales for treating brides with strong rationale that linked back to my story. I tied the knot (sorry, couldn’t resist!) at the end by saying that ‘no one wants to wear a reaction down the aisle, just style!’ This concluding point was designed to back up my point about not treating close to the big day.
Second example: This was a debate about whether to talk to clients during treatment. I opened with a question, ‘To talk or not to talk, that is the question!’
So once your client is prepared for treatment, is silence essential or is it a chance to chat and build a rapport? I posed a few pros and cons along with a couple of stories to accentuate the points. I concluded that it is matter for you as it’s your business but I’d given readers some considerations to think about!
I wrote the first article in 45 minutes. I had just seen a ‘last call for articles’ message and quickly got to work using the notes App on my iPhone late one evening whilst in a cocktail bar on holiday. I then emailed it to the editor and was surprised that it was printed word for word. The second one took a bit longer (an hour!) and that was with a hangover the following morning! I share this as at the time, I was an inexperienced article writer but I gave it and go and got on with it!
The best part was being emailed by several readers to say thanks as they had changed the way they worked as a consequence. It felt good to have added value…..
As you can see with my two examples, I had concluding lines that tied neatly to the topic.
3. Proof read and edit
Good articles are quick and easy to read when they flow well. To check, you could:
- Read your article out loud to yourself.
- Read it to someone else or let them read it out loud to you.
It’s best to ask someone with little or no knowledge so they’re not able to fill any gaps with assumed knowledge. If you are writing about something technical, ask a non-technical person to check if it makes sense to them. Make sure that your ‘critical’ friend is prepared to give you honest feedback and you can take it. It’s a pointless exercise otherwise!
When reading it out loud or hearing it, were you tripping over words or needing to read a line more than once? Did anything sound a bit long winded, wordy or awkward? If so, rework it and check again.
Some useful tips;
Keep your sentences short, so under 20 words.
Avoid waffle or you will lose or confuse your main point.
Stay within the word count.
Check your spelling and grammar.
If you use a programme like Microsoft Word, you can use its Word Count and Spelling & Grammar checker.
Once you get used to writing, you can draft something quickly and easily.
4. How to sign off your article
- Add you name to tell the reader who you are.
- You can add a title too. It could be ‘CEO of’, ‘Lash Stylist and Trainer’.
- You can add the name of your business if you haven’t used it in your title.
- You can include a website address and / or a social media link (please give us the link and not just @lashedmagazine for example. We want to be able to link you accurately and quickly.
Congratulations! You did it!
Now think about what images you have that can complement your work, including a photo of you so your readers can ‘meet’ their writer.