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Yes, Sometimes Passive Voice Is OK (Really)

2017-07-20T17:22:43+00:00 April 20th, 2017|Blog|

Can you use passive voice? Sure. Should you? Maybe. (photo by Thinkstock)   When your company name is Active Voice Communications, you invariably get questions about active and passive voice. Do you never use passive voice? Do you hate it? Is it just absolutely the worst thing ever? No, I don’t hate it. [...]

Let’s Agree to Stop With the Over-the-Top Adjectives

2017-07-20T17:22:43+00:00 April 4th, 2017|Blog|

(Photo by Thinkstock)   In my early journalism career, I worked as a copy editor and wrote numerous headlines (good, brilliant, cute, meh) for newspapers and magazines. I’ve worked in marketing and public relations and have written countless headlines for articles, reports, brochures and blog posts. As communicators — whether we are in [...]

5 Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Freelance Writer

2017-07-20T17:22:43+00:00 March 4th, 2017|Blog|

You’re buried. You’re short on time and long on demands for content. It’s time to hire a freelance writer or two to help you out of this jam. If you’ve never hired a writer before, this might seem daunting. One of the most important things you can do is to make sure you know what [...]

7 Considerations for Content That Builds Trust

2017-07-20T17:22:43+00:00 February 23rd, 2017|Blog|

Trust is a tricky, delicate thing. (Thinkstock) We live in strange times. I don’t have to tell you that. Our level of trust for essential institutions is eroding. And that’s a serious problem. But, of course, trust is a tricky thing. It’s personal. It’s subjective. It takes a long time to build and [...]

Pop Quiz: Which Word Should You Use?

2017-07-20T17:22:43+00:00 February 8th, 2017|Blog, Which Word Wednesday|

  It's Which Word Wednesday. Most weeks we'll be offering up a training video addressing a specific set of often-confused words. Today, let's take a pop quiz on the lessons covered so far. In each of the sentences below, which word would you use? 1. Notorious or famous: Mark was a _______ philanthropist. 2. Eager [...]

6 New Year’s Resolutions for Content Marketers

2017-07-20T17:22:43+00:00 December 30th, 2016|Blog|

Happy New Year from Active Voice Communications! (photo: Thinkstock)   This is the time of year to reflect, plan, purge our junk (literally and figuratively) and think about how we want to be better in the new year. As you think about your New Year's resolutions for 2017, consider going beyond losing weight [...]

Wednesday Writing Prompt #42: How Will You Be Different in 2017?

2017-07-20T17:22:43+00:00 December 28th, 2016|Blog|

New Year’s resolutions aren’t for everyone. Heck, a lot of us get to a point where we know ourselves well enough to know we don’t stick with them for one reason or another. Personally, I’m guilty of making too many resolutions — it just ends up being unrealistic. I mean, really, what was I smoking [...]

Wednesday Writing Prompt #41: Your Impact on a Kinder, Better World

2017-07-20T17:22:43+00:00 December 21st, 2016|Blog|

After a big or challenging project, I like to step back and take time to think about the experience, to reflect on any lessons learned. In a previous job, we’d bring the team together in a meeting called a postmortem. What went well? What was disastrous? How can we improve processes? I often find myself [...]

Wednesday Writing Prompt #40: Try Something New

2017-07-20T17:22:43+00:00 December 14th, 2016|Blog|

  Packing my son’s lunch and snacks this morning, I stared down. Ugh, it was the same, old stuff. Several meals a week, he gets the same thing — some variation on chicken and rice, which gets paired with one of handful of veggie choices. We’ve fallen into this rut because he won’t try new [...]

Wednesday Writing Prompt #39: Your First Major News Event

2017-07-20T17:22:43+00:00 December 7th, 2016|Blog|

Pearl Harbor. (Photo by Thinkstock) On this date in 1941, Japanese fighter planes attacked the naval base at Pearl Harbor. News coverage of the event was scattered as news media had only bits and pieces of the information. Far different from the 24/7 coverage we have today — for better and for worse. [...]