Web-Writing Insights from Master Communicator John Ettorre

“The web is a giant learning machine,” stated International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) presenter John Ettorre, “if you commit to learning, you’ll leap ahead.”

Ettorre, an accomplished writer, editor, marketing consultant and writing coach, was invited to present at the September 22nd luncheon program titled Writing for the Web & the World of 140 Characters.

Speaking to an audience of 74 professional communicators, Ettorre encouraged colleagues, clients, and consultants to “harness the opportunities of the web and meld them into your business.”

IABC Awards Program Director Kate Hawk introduced the program by revealing that 95% of the IABC community has expressed interest improving their writing skills. Certainly, the web is a platform that is demanding written content and communicators must keep up with advancements in this space. Ettorre presented case studies, lessons, and life experiences that demonstrated this sentiment and provided best practice solutions.

So how does a communicator stay on top of the changing trends? John suggests adopting hockey legend Wayne Gretzky’s effective philosophy to "skate where the puck's going, not where it's been." Staying on top of trends will undeniably award writers and content developers unique communication opportunities.

Technology aside, communicators must still rely on their traditional abilities to craft messages. “Tell great stories,” suggested Ettorre, “but don't just narrate. The Internet provides abundant opportunities to enrich your story including video, audio, blogs, images, and social media.” Additionally, Ettorre suggested that communicators recruit designers on projects as their ability to create engaging media will visually enhance messages.

The next IABC Luncheon on Thursday, October 20th titled Emerging Technologies for Communicators will provide a terrific follow up to this program by revealing strategic applications for social media, mobile technology, and collaborative software tools.

Hosted by International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) Cleveland at The City Club, 850 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., with opportunities for networking. The presentation will begin at noon. Cost to IABC members is $17; to non-members, $32; and $10 for members-in-transition and students. Register online at iabccleveland.com.

- Geof Pelaia