Improve Your Writing with These Free Tools
Content writing is a hard task, and it grows harder when you factor in the time it takes revise, edit, and proofread your text. Fortunately for writers across the world, there is a growing number of tools to make the process as painless as possible. As a content marketer, I am writing every day – and I have shaved hours off my writing process with a few simple (and free!) tools: Grammarly, Hemingway, and the Headline Analyzer. Take a look at the advantage of each:
My usual practice is to write in Microsoft Word and then copy the text into our blogging platform. I don’t have a profound reason for doing things this way, other than the fact that I’ve been using Word for the last 20 years. I’m comfortable with the tools and it works for me.
But Word isn’t always on the cutting edge of technology. So when it comes time to proofread and edit my posts, I turn to Grammarly. It is so much more powerful than Microsoft’s spell and grammar check. Grammarly will find, not only misspelled words but commonly confused words. The grammar check is also much improved over Microsoft – both in finding errors and not marking non-errors.
They have options once you sign up for a free account – you can paste the text into their website text editor, install a Chrome extension that checks most of the text you enter across the web, install Grammarly for Microsoft Office to check within the Microsoft suite itself, or the Grammarly Windows app. It’s easy and free – there’s no reason to not run all your content through Grammarly.
After correcting grammar and spelling, I turn to the Hemingway App. Hemingway is designed to help your writing be simple, active, and punchy – like its namesake. Once you copy your text into the website or app you get feedback on adverb usage, passive voice, complicated phrases, and complex sentences.
I have a love/hate relationship with Hemingway – the app not the author – because I tend to write long, relatively complex sentences (like this one). But remember that Hemingway offers style suggestions – not hard-and-fast rules – so don’t feel bad to ignore its advice from time to time.
I paste my text into the Hemingway app and go through their suggestions to simplify my text where I can. Readability is an important part of writing for both people and SEO. Hemingway provides a great tool for ensuring that your stay readable.
Once the content is free from mistakes and optimized for readability, it’s time to turn to the headline. The headline is just as important as the content, so coming up with an eye-catching headline is vital to good writing. Many writers suggest spending equal amounts of time on the content and on the headline – but with CoSchedule’s Headline Analyzer you can cut that time down.
The tool measures your headline based on word choice (common, uncommon, emotional, and power) and type (Generic, how-to, etc.). Then the Headline Analyzer spits out a score on a scale to 100. My general rule is to only use headlines that score above a 75 – but sometimes I’ll make an exception for something I like. Another great feature of the Headline Analyzer is that it displays your recent headlines along with their score. It’s a great way to try out five or ten options and pick the best one.
Creating consistent content – for a blog, social media, or website – is a difficult task. But you can lighten the load by employing the above tools. I sometimes still struggle with writing content, but my proofreading and editing process has been revolutionized with Grammarly and Hemingway. And instead of spending an hour writing 20 headlines, I spend 15 minutes with the Headline Analyzer creating a winning title.
If you’re struggling with content creation, Fusion Group USA can help you with blog writing, website content, or social media posts. Our creative team is ready to tackle any content creation task – contact us today to see how Fusion Group USA can help your business through the SEO-based blogging and writing.