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Words in Motion

from WordDrive Communications
Writing in service to your voice

March 2010

Polish Your Writing: the Art of Brevity
In the mood for some practice? This month, how to do the cutting that makes your message stand out clearly. Marcia Yudkin, author of "Persuading on Paper," advises aiming to cut at least 20 percent from your initial draft.

Here's an example that I've taken live from the Internet (and disguised):

BEFORE:  Since 1902, Memorial Hospital has built upon the legacy of its beginnings as a reliable medical resource for residents of the capital city of Nebraska.

AFTER:  Since 1902, Memorial Hospital has reliably served the residents of Lincoln. (from 25 words to 11=56%)

Take a moment to figure out what's been cut. Is anything essential missing? How important is it that Lincoln is the capital of Nebraska?

Now, try this one yourself:
Mountain Medical Partners has been designated as a Blue Distinction Center for Spine Surgery and a Blue Distinction Center for Knee and Hip Replacement by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kentucky for providing high-quality care and safety in knee and hip replacements and spine surgery.

Any luck? I managed to reduce this one by 17 words, or 37%--perhaps too ruthless!

Share your rewrites! Send them to me and I'll post them next month on my website (anonymously if you prefer) so you can compare notes with other readers.
Making your case for a worthy project
I'd love to have help with that project," the communications director said, "but the funds are just not available."

The truth of the matter is that money can almost always be found for any really worthy project--the challenge is in getting management to agree with you. Sometimes it's a matter of patiently, persistently persuading.

Is there a project you've been longing to launch? A new brochure, an email newsletter, a set of communications materials for a new service?
Here are some tips for making your case:
  • Think about every possible advantage of your project, and list them in bullet form
  • Estimate any additional revenue that may result, and compare it to the estimated cost of the project
  • In your estimated costs, include staff time and any outside help
  • Present your findings on a single page, starting with a short paragraph that describes the project and summarizes its advantages.
WordDrive can help you make your case to leadership for the funds and outside support a project sometimes needs.  Contact Jane for more information.
News: Sherwin Certified in Email Marketing

Constant Contact has just certified Jane Sherwin as a trainer in "The Power of Email Marketing."

Stay tuned for scheduled training sessions--or contact me if you'd like to know more.

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In This Issue
Polish Your Writing
Making Your Case for a Worthy Project
News: Sherwin Certified in Email Marketing
Social Media Snapshot
Two more links to useful information on the use of social media:

Some physican practices making good use of Facebook

Substantive advice and information for hospitals using social media

Save the Date!

"Renew, Refresh and Retool" Workshop

"for the people who do the writing"

Another opportunity to strengthen your writing  and discover the right ways to get the communications job done.

Friday, April 23
8:30 am-12:30 pm

Announcement coming soon.
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