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Copy Tips

Here are some general tips for making your UB copy strong.

Avoid jargon.

Specialized language has its place in peer-reviewed journals, but always strive to make your work relevant to the general reader.

Avoid clichés.

Our work is original and unique. Our communications should be too.

One message is better than more.

Make a singular point and support it well. You’ll make a stronger, more lasting impact.

No shouting, please.

If it’s something you’d be willing to yell in a quiet room, use an exclamation point. Otherwise, don’t. Forced emotion will feel fake.

Find the balance.

Every “give” (attribute) has a corresponding “get” (benefit). Make sure they support and strengthen each other.

Make it about them.

Never stop thinking about the readers, and what the story might mean to them in a tangible way. It helps keep the information relatable and relevant.

Celebrate the unexpected.

Tracking traffic patterns though Twitter. Predicting the future with a 200,000-year-old sediment core. At UB, you don’t have to look far for compelling stories with an interesting twist.

Show outcomes.

Every story has the potential for an inspiring result, a concrete example or a goal achieved. Even pure research leads to new possibilities and breakthroughs.

Focus on the how.

Always remember that the University at Buffalo is as much a way as it is a place. When in doubt, refer to the messaging map and our personality traits, and write with a focus on how we arrive at amazing solutions, insights and discoveries. These three important elements will unify our content across all units and channels.

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