How to Safely Republish Content From Your Blog

September 24th, 2014

Content is a big investment for small businesses. The days of paying 50p per article are (thankfully) behind us, and good quality content is enriching the web thanks to an increased spend on good writing. The quest for original content has resulted in fewer plagiarised posts, too, which is good news for the people who are paying for the posts.

Copying contentBut you can only purchase a certain number of pieces per week, and higher quality inevitably means investment. Many of our clients need to post guest blogs to build authority, while also gaining traction by populating their own blog.

Without rewriting every single piece of content, it can be difficult to decide which content would be best suited to each destination.

This leads us to a logical question: is duplicate content an issue with republishing, or can you safely republish that killer blog post more than […]

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15 Ways to Make Technical Blogs More Shareable

September 19th, 2014

As a technical writer, I’m trained to create documents that are ‘pure’. Software user guides a good example. When writing a user guide, it’s bad practice to weave marketing content into the text. You should simply provide guidance and instruction.

giving an idea bulbWeb content writing is completely different. It’s less structured. More conversational. And often, it allows the writer to express their own view. If you don’t make web content accessible, people won’t care enough to share it.

In content marketing, the ultimate goal is to get incoming links in a natural and organic way. That means sharing is still vital.

In order to do content marketing well, our clients need a high level of technical accuracy with the right amount of promotional content or editorial comment. Time and again, clients tell me that their writers struggle to blend these two disparate content types. I want to look […]

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Why Your User Guide Needs a Style Guide Too

September 18th, 2014

Editing is arguably the most important process of technical authoring, and the one that takes up most of our time.

I’m a technical author, and I find editing quite challenging when we have several projects on the go at the same time.

Every company has their own branding guidelines; some also have special terms or acronyms that they use. Often, the rules and preferences for the editing process overlap from client to client, and we need to know everyone is getting what they asked for.

The Editing Process

When we edit a technical document, we might simply correct a procedure or document a new feature. The edit may coincide with a new release of the software, so we might just tweak a few screenshots.

TypewriterTechnical editing also includes bigger changes:

  • Alterations to the structure of documents
  • Changes to product specifications
  • Branding changes
  • New fields in forms
  • New annotations for images
  • Language changes (such as British English to American English)
  • Changes to […]
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The All-New Zapier: Automate Your Business Admin

December 12th, 2013

As 2013 draws to a close, we’re looking forward to a new year and a raft of new technical writing projects. Over the last couple of weeks, we’ve been thrilled to work with new clients and secure new contracts for the year ahead.

As a company, Red Robot Media prides itself on keeping everything in-house. All of our content is produced by two people. That means we’re busy, and we need to minimise admin if we can.

Zapier IFTTTI’ve previously posted about Buffer, and IFTTT. These services enable the automation of certain tasks on social media, and/or integrate cloud and social media websites with each other. We still use IFTTT and Buffer on a daily basis, but I’m always looking for new cloud tools. And with an increasing admin workload, I […]

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The Importance of a Great User Guide

November 22nd, 2013

User documentation Service DeskMathew and I now offer technical authoring services, but we both have a history of working in IT support.

Mathew worked for BT and the NIHR before becoming a technical author. I worked at Mazars and StepChange before getting a great service desk job at the NIHR, part of the NHS.

Our service desk experience has helped us to understand the benefits of a good user guide. Great documentation is crucial for end users, and it also really helps the service desk team to give consistent, correct answers.

Mathew and I often rely on our own service desk experience when designing system documentation; we know what users are looking for and can predict the questions they will ask.

Service Desks and Technical Authors: What’s the Connection?

When you understand the importance of the service desk and its role in an […]

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