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10 Editing Secrets Professional Writers Don’t Want You to Know

Expressing yourself with words is a wonderful ability, but it can also be highly frustrating – particularly if you experience a bout of writer’s block or simply struggle to see obvious mistakes time and time again. It’s not always easy to spot errors in your own work, but thankfully there are many things you can do to not only improve your overall writing skills, but to continuously communicate in the most articulate way possible.

Concentration, alongside a selection of super-specific editing tricks, will stand you in good stead to write poetry, novels, web copy, articles, blog posts, and many other kinds of literature, so take a look at the following tips:

1. Get the reader onside and ask questions which make them say “yes”

First impressions count, so be sure to draw the reader in from the start by asking questions which make them say “yes.” The more they say “yes”, the more your product or service will be relevant to their needs, meaning they’ll be more likely to invest. This kind of persuasive and emotive writing is a call-to-action and is particularly important if you’re trying to market a product, as what you are offering needs to appeal to your target audience – instantly.

This kind of persuasive and emotive writing is a call-to-action and is particularly important

Unfortunately, it’s a rather dog-eat-dog world and, if the consumer can’t see what you’re offering straight away, they might close your brochure, throw your leaflet in the bin, bounce of your webpage, and simply go elsewhere. Sound harsh? Well, it’s reality, so make them feel like you know what they need and help them.

2. Space your content out

In order to catch and maintain the interest of readers, you need to make your content as easy to absorb as possible. Large blocks of text can seem intimidating and overwhelming, so be sure to tap the enter button every one-to-three sentences. This is particularly important when writing for the web, as users spend an average of 15 seconds on a webpage so there isn’t long to keep them engaged.

Negative – or blank – space is a common trick used by both photographers and designers to create a focal point, but it can also be used by writers to draw attention to something important. It also gives readers a time to digest what they’ve read, gather their thoughts, and take a breath before carrying on the reading process.

3. Make the most of in-text formatting

To prevent all words from running into one another and to ensure a reader doesn’t miss anything important, why not make the most if in-text formatting? Everything from italicising and CAPITALISING, to backlinking and bolding your key benefits will help capture a reader’s attention and make certain points stand out. As humans, we are wired to detect things that are different or new, so stylistic changes can help people to focus.

4. Help your readers out by using bullet points

After a hard day at work, would you rather scan a large block of text for the information you’re looking for, or casually browse a list of bullet points containing all the essential text you need? The latter is, of course, more appealing, as not only are bullet points easy to read but they can help to:

  • Organise your text and make it more readable
  • Highlight key points and things you really shouldn’t miss
  • Summarise surrounding text in a clear, concise way
  • Offer a stylistic change encouraging readers to focus

5. Start sentences with trigger words

No matter what you write, try to keep the magic of literature alive

People download books to their Kindle or flick through pages of a novel because the stories they read excite them in many different ways. Reading is, ultimately, an enjoyable experience, so no matter what you write, try to keep the magic of literature alive. In other words, don’t just drone on and on, but instead think carefully about how your copy is arranged, and start sentences with trigger words which will evoke feelings of nostalgia or spark the imagination.

Words such as “imagine”, “remember”, or “picture this” let readers know that you’re about to tell them a story or jog their memory in some way, and this will encourage them to read on and find out more about what you have to say.

6. Try to use the word “because” as often as you can – without sounding strange

Think carefully and you’ll see that the word “because” is used to justify an action. It explains why you should (or shouldn’t) be doing something, and is an excellent word to incorporate into all kinds of persuasive copy (particularly sales related) as it gives people a reason to act.

Imagine you’re a mum looking to buy the latest computer game for her son, for instance. You might not be overly convinced that your boy needs another distraction, but that important word “because” in the sales copy might just tempt you and convince you to do so.

7. Speak confidently in the active voice

As mentioned above, you’ve mere seconds to catch people’s attention, so it’s a good idea to speak in the active voice rather than the passive. This will make your statements sound more lively and confident, helping readers stay alert.

  • Active voice = the subject is doing the action
  • Passive voice = the subject is receiving the action


  • Mo Farah won the 5,000m gold medal in 2012 – active
  • The 5,000m gold medal was won by Mo Farah in 2012 – passive

In order to spice up your copy, you can press CTRL-F to find passive words like “by” and work to make the sentence more interesting.

8. Rewrite your copy using the second person

One of the best ways to connect with a reader on a personal level is to use pronouns like “you”, “your”, and “yours” as this instantly makes people feel like you are talking to them on a one-to-one basis. Getting into the hearts and minds of people you’ve never met before is an incredibly difficult thing to do, but by knowing your target audience and simply writing in the second person will make it a whole lot easier.

9. Make the most of punchy verbs rather than adverbs

Want your writing to be outstanding rather than average?

Want your writing to be outstanding rather than average? Avoid the wishy-washy adverb-verb combo and instead opt for a punchy verb. For example, instead of writing, “She’s very cross”, you could write, “she’s irate” as this gets to the point quicker and is sharper. It’s far too easy to bulk your copy out with unnecessary adverbs, so scan what you’ve written and make the relevant tweaks.

10. Make sure your call to action is up to scratch

Before you print a batch of leaflets or do a mass email send, make sure your call-to-action is up to scratch. Not only should it be worded properly (and spelt correctly), but it must also be clear, concise, bold, visible, urgent, and compelling. In other words, it should not be generic or boring such as “call now to find out more”, but engaging and exciting such as “make a booking now for an adventure you’ll never forget.”

Writing is one thing, but ordering words in such a way that they are interesting, intriguing and inspiring is a more challenging prospect altogether, but the above ten tips should certainly help. To find out more about effective copywriting, you can speak to the team at Minerva Copywriting today. Simply submit an online enquiry or call FREE on 0800 180 4085 to transform the effectiveness of your content and boost online success.

Advertising That Sells (Part 4) – Big Ideas

David Ogilvy

4. Big ideas.

Unless your advertising is built on a big idea, it will pass like a ship in the night. It takes a big idea to jolt the consumer out of his indifference – to make him notice your advertising, remember it and take action.

Big ideas are usually simple ideas. Said Charles Kettering, the great General Motors inventor: “this problem, when solved, will be simple.” Big, simple ideas are not easy to come by. They require genius – and midnight oil. A truly big one can be continued for 20 years – like our eye patch for Hathaway shirts.

Previous entries

View previous entries in the ‘How to create advertising that sells’ series from David Ogilvy on the Minerva Copywriting website:

Discover more

Find out more about David Ogilvy’s acclaimed tenets of advertising across the Minerva Copywriting website, starting at the beginning of ‘How to create advertising that sells‘.

Alternatively, you can find out more about the copywriting services provided by Minerva Copywriting today. Simply browse our website and discover more about the SEO content writing, advertising copy, email marketing, and social media content services currently available from our friendly and experienced team.

You can even contact our friendly team today by submitting an online enquiry form or by calling FREE on 0800 180 4085. We’ll be happy to provide you with a free sample of work, and also quote you on any content or copywriting requirements you may have.

Advertising That Sells (Part 3) – Brand Image

David Ogilvy

3. Brand image.

Every advertisement should contribute to the complex symbol which is the brand image. 95% of all advertising is created ad hoc. Most products lack any consistent image from one year to another.

The manufacturer who dedicates his advertising to building the most sharply defined personality for his brand gets the largest share of the market.

Previous entries

View previous entries in the ‘How to create advertising that sells’ series from David Ogilvy on the Minerva Copywriting website:

Discover more

Find out more about David Ogilvy’s acclaimed tenets of advertising across the Minerva Copywriting website, starting at the beginning of ‘How to create advertising that sells‘.

Alternatively, you can find out more about the copywriting services provided by Minerva Copywriting today. Simply browse our website and discover more about the SEO content writing, advertising copy, email marketing, and social media content services currently available from our friendly and experienced team.

You can even contact our friendly team today by submitting an online enquiry form or by calling FREE on 0800 180 4085. We’ll be happy to provide you with a free sample of work, and also quote you on any content or copywriting requirements you may have.

Advertising That Sells (Part 2) – Large Promise

David Ogilvy

2. Large promise.

The second most important decision is this: what should you promise the customer?

A promise is not a claim, or a theme, or a slogan. It is a benefit for the consumer. It pays to promise a benefit which is unique and competitive, and the product must deliver the benefit your promise.

Most advertising promises nothing. It is doomed to fail in the marketplace.

“Promise, large promise, is the soul of an advertisement” – said Samuel Johnson.

Previous entries

View previous entries in the ‘How to create advertising that sells’ series from David Ogilvy on the Minerva Copywriting website:

Discover more

Find out more about David Ogilvy’s acclaimed tenets of advertising across the Minerva Copywriting website, starting at the beginning of ‘How to create advertising that sells‘.

Alternatively, you can find out more about the copywriting services provided by Minerva Copywriting today. Simply browse our website and discover more about the SEO content writing, advertising copy, email marketing, and social media content services currently available from our friendly and experienced team.

You can even contact our friendly team today by submitting an online enquiry form or by calling FREE on 0800 180 4085. We’ll be happy to provide you with a free sample of work, and also quote you on any content or copywriting requirements you may have.

Advertising That Sells (Part 1)

David Ogilvy 'How to create advertising that sells'

How to create advertising that sells

“Ogilvy & Mather has created over $1,480,000,000 worth of advertising. Here, with all the dogmatism of brevity are 38 of the things we have learned.”

By David Ogilvy

1. The most important decision

We have learned that the effect of your advertising on your sales depends more on this decision than on any other: how should you position your product?

Should you position Schweppes as a soft drink – or as a mixer?

Should you position Dove as a product for dry skin or as a product which gets hands really clean?

The results of your campaign depend less on how we write your advertising than how your product is positioned. It follows that positioning should be decided before the advertising is created.

Research can help. Look before you leap.

David Ogilvy

Content Marketing For Travel Companies


Minerva Copywriting in Kent provides a range of content marketing and copywriting services for travel companies. From providing new copy for your website or travel brochures, compelling blogs posts to high-conversing email newsletters, our team of experienced copywriters will create content that is engaging and informative, and which helps build and develop your travel brand into an industry leader. Below you can take a closer look at some of the content marketing for travel companies we provide, and you can find out more by getting in touch with our team today.

Travel Brochure Content Writing

Travel and holiday brochures represent a key requirement for any travel company. As such, it’s vital that the quality of your copywriting is of the highest standard. Employing professional writers to craft your content ensures consistent tone and style, helping customers develop and affinity to your brand and your company to communicate effectively and concisely. Our travel copywriting services ensure your content adheres to brand guidelines, highlights your USPs, and converts your customers into buyers.

Travel Press Releases

Press releases are fundamental to communicating your company messages to a wider audience, but need to engage with journalists and bloggers that are part of your mailing list. Our copywriters will develop press releases that present all the key information in a way that is engaging and easy to repurpose for an article. All-too often, press releases will go unnoticed, so knowing what works and what doesn’t will prove invaluable to achieving the media coverage you deserve.

Blog Posts and News

Keeping your website up-to-date and populated with fresh content on a regular basis is invaluable for the development of your online presence. Among the easiest ways to keep relevant is to produce news and blog posts on a consistent basis. At Minerva Copywriting, we will work alongside you in the development of the right tone of voice and the right form of content to produce; whether it’s commentary on recent travel industry events, or extensive blog posts talking about your range of travel destinations, we can help produce the content marketing material that you need to stay connected to your audience.

SEO Content Writing

SEO content writing is essential to ensuring your travel company is able to achieve the best-possible rankings in search engines. In order to be effective, however, you need to know which keywords to target and how to use them effectively in your travel copy. Thanks to our extensive experience in content marketing for travel companies, we can help you develop an editorial schedule that optimises web pages, integrating the right terms into your copy to maximise user experience.

Social Media Content Writing

Generating social media posts isn’t as straightforward as it seems, with tone, style and content usually differing significantly from other forms of content your travel company creates. For example, many travel companies need their social media content to be more conversational and personable in tone. Our travel content writers will help you produce such content regularly and effectively, helping you reach your target audience with the tone-of-voice that is necessary for the social media platform being used.

Travel Emails

Email copywriting and email newsletters play an essential role in retention marketing, reminding past travellers about the quality services you offer, updating them on the latest deals, and even just keeping them informed of company developments. The copywriters at Minerva Copywriting will help you compile a schedule for your email newsletters and will develop the content needed to stay connected with your customers via email.

Travel Content Marketing Services

To find out more about the travel content marketing services available from Minerva Copywriting, you can contact our friendly and experienced team today. We’ll be happy to provide you with a complete overview of the services we provide, as well as help you develop the content necessary to achieve your business goals. Simply submit an online enquiry form today or contact us on 0800 180 4085.

The Art of App Description Writing

In today’s short attention span marketplace, words are at a premium. We’ve gone from infinitely long blogs to Facebook-style snappy posts, and then taken things even further with Twitter, Vine and Snapchat. This has implications in the copywriting world, with brevity now king. If you can’t get your message across in 100 characters or less, you are in danger of being dismissed as “too long winded.” Nowhere is this more important than with app writing.

Though catalogue writing has never lent itself to volumes of words, online catalogue writing is a lot more competitive. In a traditional sense, all products are being sold by one shop, so competition between items is unlikely. But on Apple’s App Store, or the Google Play store, every app is fighting every other app for downloads. There could be hundreds, thousands, or even hundreds of thousands of competitors out there, so writing the right content is a case of sink or swim.

So how can you best go about it? Well, here are some tips and pointers that can give you the best chance of surviving in this overcrowded market place.

Know your marketplace

Much like how there would be differences between advertising in a kids magazine and advertising in a financial newspaper, there are key differences between the App Store and Google Play. Here are some of the fundamentals:

  • App names can be 255 characters on the App Store, but only 30 characters on Google Play
  • The Apple’s App Store has a keyword field, whereas Google Play does not
  • You can use five screenshots on the App Store, and eight on Google Play
  • Both allow video previews but Google Play’s (max. two minutes) is longer than the App Store’s (max. 30 seconds)
  • The App Store uses categories (one dominant, one sub) for each app (three for games), but Google Play uses only one
  • Google Play allows for social likes, via the Google + “+1” system, but the App store has none

The key difference to understand is that keywords in the description have no effect on ranking in the App Store (hence the inclusion of the Keyword Field), but they do have an effect on the app’s ranking on Google Play. Keywords are still important on the App Store, of course, as Google still indexes iTunes pages (and keywords within the content are a ranking factor), but it is a finer balancing act on Google Play.

Know when to fold ‘em

The “fold” in ASO (App Store Optimisation) speak refers to both the cut-off point of a description and the app name itself when looking from a mobile device. At some point, for the sake of compacting the screen, both will be cut off. That means that the first one or two sentences, or even the first few words, are critical.

As you can see from screenshots, you don’t get much. Generally speaking, 225 characters is the limit for iTunes description cut-off point, whereas the title will be cut off after about 30 characters. In more accurate terms, the title or description won’t exceed a certain amount of pixels. Make sure you preview everything to make sure you fit within these vague limits.

So, while you don’t get a lot, there are effective ways to work within these boundaries. To maximise effect, you have two choices – either sum up the whole app in this short space, or push the unique selling point. Hopefully, you’ll be able to give a complete description of the app in this short space. If your game app is simple, this is easily achievable.

If, however, your app can’t be described so succinctly, you have to change gears and focus on its USP. What does your app do that others don’t? When users are browsing, giving them a killer hook will usually be enough to at least warrant a closer inspection. Then the other characters in your description can take over.

Reeling them in

To use an ocean analogy, the above fold text is the bait on the hook you have cast off from your little boat. It’s designed to tempt the potential user, before you reel them in with the other tools at your disposal. The title and short description might be the combo that gets them hooked, but it’s the longer description that finishes the job.

Both stores have a 4,000-character limit in their descriptions. That’s a lot, and it’s important to use it all, and use it well. Users these days don’t want a lot of “fluff” content. Give them details, give them stats, give them reviews, and then get out of there. Obviously, you should do your utmost to dress this content up professionally, but don’t waste characters on something that won’t matter in the user’s final decision.

Otherwise, the best advice we can give is to use tried and tested short advertising guidelines. Short sentences, short paragraphs, smart lines breaks and useful bullet points will all combine to get the message across effectively. It is very important to get it right, therefore you should consider using a professional copywriting agency.

Lie detector

Finally, it’s important to be honest. The internet is not a great place for corporate “white lies” – they have a tendency to be found out. Overselling your game may pay dividends in the short term, but the truth will come to light sooner or later, which could have catastrophic effects on both the current app and any you as a developer launch in the future (due to lack of trust).

If including stats, don’t make them up. Don’t make up reviews. And don’t make your app out to be something it isn’t. But DO mention everything good about the app. If it cracks one million downloads, great. Tell new users about the large user base they would be stepping into. If a major reviewer gives it a great score, fantastic. Include snippets in the description. You may find it a struggle at first, but the possible pay off for the honest way outweighs the potential pitfalls of being deceitful.

So, in conclusion, the “art” of app description writing lies within a few simple disciplines. Know the differences between app stores. Be succinct and punchy. And above all else – accentuate the positives.

Why copywriting services are essential to online success

For any company looking to dominate search engines, effective SEO and digital marketing are a must, and key to such dominance are quality copywriting services. As more and more companies battle for limited space on page one of Google, gaining the upper hand in any way possible means investing in the most effective, most influential factors related to marketing. And, when it comes to influence, few methods have such an enduring effect as content marketing.

Of course, for content marketing to perform at its best, a combination of professional copywriting services and intelligent SEO is required. But what exactly are the benefits of copywriting services and why should your business look to invest? We take a look at five key reasons why copywriting services are essential to online success.

1. Fresh content pleases Google

Google likes relevancy. Whether that’s relevancy of subject or time-sensitivity, relevant content is the key to better online performance. As such, regular production of unique content is fundamental to better rankings. The more regularly you write and add content to your website or blog, the more regularly Google will crawl your website, the more pages you have indexed, and the more keywords and traffic you’re able to capitalise on. By investing in copywriting services, you can have a provider supply you with quality content, day in, day out.

2. Attract links

Creating content for the sake of it is, to all intents and purposes, a waste of time and energy. Any piece of content you create and post on your website should seek to achieve a goal, whether that’s to push towards conversion, engage with users, or attract links. And, as has been the case for many years, attracting links is all-important to online success. By taking the time to create high-quality content, you end up with a piece of work that is refined and detailed, informative and engaging. As such, the likelihood of attracting links and boosting your rankings is enhanced significantly.

3. Stay engaged

Generating a relationship with an audience plays an important role in getting more leads and converting more sales. By investing in copywriting services, you can benefit from the experience of professional copywriters who know how to engage with audiences of all types. Regardless of demographic, quality copywriters can adapt the content they create to engage on an emotional level, triggering the response you need to achieve your goals.

4. Convert

Connecting with an audience is one thing, converting that audience into sales and revenue is something altogether different. Working with an experienced copywriting agency enables you to develop a user experience that is tailored towards conversion. With persuasive content, evocative prose, and clear call to actions, quality copywriters will help guide users precisely where you want them to head, and boost the conversion rate of your website.

5. Promote social activity

Social media plays an integral role in modern business, with the power of effective social marketing able to boost sales and revenue to unprecedented levels. Key to social media marketing is content. Without engaging content to share, activity on social networks all but comes to a standstill. By investing in copywriting services and the experience of a content marketing agency, you can develop a social strategy that utilises the content created and promotes online interactions.

To find out more about how copywriting services and content marketing can help your business achieve more online, contact Minerva Copywriting today on 0800 180 4085. We take pride in developing high-quality content that will engage with your target audience. You can even receive a free sample of content by completing the form on this page.

5 Reasons to Invest in Content Writing Services


For businesses large and small, new and old, an effective digital marketing strategy is essential. Without investment in marketing, raising awareness of a brand, reaching out to new customers, and converting potential leads into guaranteed sales would be impossible. As such, investment in marketing should never be overlooked.

Of course, digital marketing is a multifaceted discipline. From search engine optimisation to paid advertising, there are a number of considerations to bear in mind when it comes to spending your marketing budget. One of the most effective and enduring options for marketing investment, however, lies in content writing services. Below we take a look at five reasons why content writing services should form a major part of any marketing campaign.

1. Exceptional ROI

When it comes to looking for great value for money, content marketing has few peers. While many companies my baulk at the thought of having to invest in content, the enduring value of effective, quality work cannot be overstated. Imagine investing in a 1,000-word article that attracts 50 links. Those links will prove invaluable to your search rankings, and will have a lasting effect on your website, attracting traffic and boosting sales for months and years to come. When compared to the short-term gains achieved through such activities as PPC, the ROI afforded by content is clear to all.

2. Support the buying cycle

Here at Minerva Copywriting, we’re huge advocates of the customer buying cycle and, when it comes to content creation, we like to ensure that the work we create plays an important role in the journey a customer makes. By investing in content writing services, you are able to generate the necessary marketing messages that push an audience towards a sale. From brand awareness and regular blog posts, email copywriting to social media content, every piece of content work plays an integral role in a successful conversion.

3. Engagement

Establishing a rapport and lasting relationship with a customer is essential for any company. While customer service represents one means of creating an enduring relationship, content marketing is another. Engaging with an audience is never easy, but with professional copywriting services, you can generate the marketing messages necessary to foster a rapport with your target marketing. Whether it’s through informative blog posts or detailed product descriptions, content can connect with an audience in a manner that last for years to come.

4. Get noticed

Social media has become integral to online and business success – no form of marketing can be quite as powerful as word of mouth. As such, you should look to invest in content writing services that promote the sharing and dissemination of your content. Invest in work that is engaging and interactive, informative and entertaining, and it will soon be shared on social networks. As a major SEO signal and playing an important role in your search rankings, can you afford not to have content that is shared socially?

5. Fresh content keeps things interesting

It’s worth remembering that much of the content you see online is time sensitive. Unless you’re able to establish yourself with evergreen content (how to guides, in-depth reports, etc.) you will need to keep posting new and interesting content in order to attract attention. What’s more, search engines place great value on the regular production of content, with publication alerting search engine bots to crawl your site more often and improving your SEO performance.

To find out more about how investing in content writing services can help your business achieve greater levels of online success, contact Minerva Copywriting today on 0800 180 4085 or by submitting an online enquiry form. Our team of experienced copywriters and content marketing professionals will be delighted to offer you the guidance you need to achieve more online through content marketing.

Travel Copywriting


Here at Minerva Copywriting, we know how important is it to be fully immersed in a subject matter in order to truly bring it to life. When it comes to generating marketing material for our clients, we’ve always found one topic to be far simpler than any other to get excited about: travel.

The world is a wonderfully diverse place, with so many unforgettable sights and sounds to savour; as such, being able to delve into the culture and history of some of the world’s most compelling destinations makes our job as exciting and fascinating as can be. And, if we’re working on travel copywriting for your company, we like to think that the excitement we feel about our work shines through.

Recent travel copywriting projects

Over the years, we’ve been fortunate enough to work on a number of travel copywriting projects. Those completed recently include engaging travel blog posts for the multi-award winning travel company, Holiday Extras, as well as extensive content work for the new Belle France website. Throughout both projects, we were able to thoroughly research and investigate the charms of chosen destinations, and provide a unique angle on what to see, do, and experience.

What’s more, the different audience types for the two projects meant we had the opportunity to diversify the tone of voice and type of content featured in the work. Such variation in terms of tone and content ensured that the projects were as challenging as they were fascinating – something which enabled us to keep content fresh and engaging.

Best of all, we received fantastic feedback from the clients regarding our travel copywriting work – what could be better?

Quality travel copywriting

At Minerva Copywriting, we enjoy working across all subject matters, but travel copywriting is undoubtedly among our favourites. By being able to focus our attention on some of the world’s most compelling travel locations – and dream that we ourselves were there – is as rewarding for us as it is for our clients.

If you’re a travel company looking to expand your target audience, reach out to existing customers, or even boost brand awareness, we have the travel copywriting expertise to help drive new levels of online success. Simply get in touch with us today by submitting an online enquiry form, or by calling our friendly, knowledgeable team FREE on 0800 180 4085.


Discover how we can help you achieve greater online success through our digital marketing, copywriting, and SEO services. Drop us a message today.