The “cheat sheet.”
This type of content—when well-crafted—makes your job easier, your day more manageable, and your brow less furrowed.
As a content creator, the managing editor of the Content Marketeer, and a digital marketer, these cheat sheets serve as invaluable references for optimizing content and polishing your copy. Taken from my own bookmarks, they’re not all fancy—but they get the job done.
Social Media Image Guide
You’re going to find a lot of guides/infographics/posts on this topic. But Sprout Social’s sticks out because they regularly update their information. This blog post will remain relevant even as social media sites change their parameters and guidelines—which they most definitely will.
HTML Cheat Sheet
Marketers are becoming more technical, and understanding HTML is an increasingly important skill. This HTML cheat sheet from the wonderful folks at Skillcrush hangs next to my desk, and is a great reference while writing and editing blog posts, emails, or landing pages.
Commonly Misspelled Words and Grammar Mistakes
A treasure trove of clever cartoons and commentary, The Oatmeal has unforgettable ways of explaining grammar errors. The cartoon “10 Words You Need to Stop Misspelling” addresses some of the most common mistakes, including “its” versus “it’s,” “affect” versus “effect,” and more.
Getting the Length of Content Right
If your content doesn’t resonate with your audience, what was the point? This infographic from Content Champion is a great reference for ensuring your message actually lands with your audience and captures their attention.
Best Times to Publish on Your Blog and Social Media
I’m a firm believer that every marketer needs to test “ideals” for their own audiences. What works for one company may not work for another. However, there’s nothing wrong with learning from—and making informed decisions based on—the experiences of others. This cheat sheet from TrackMaven is a great start for understanding the best times to post content and engage your audience. Bonus: Their brand mascot is a corgi.
A Proofreaders’ Marks
Yes, we live in the digital age of tracked changes and revision histories. But, when doing final edits on an eBook or guide, I always print it out and edit with a real live pen. We’re so used to skimming on a screen, it’s amazing what we miss. If your writers and editors aren’t using the same proofreading marks, you risk producing less-than-clean copy. That’s why this Chicago Manual of Style cheat sheet (a printed-out version, of course) stays close to my desk.
Be a Better Writer and Editor
Writing and editing take a lot of brainpower. And sometimes, you need a little help keeping your mind sharp. The proofreading checklist from Articulate Marketing is a good one to share with freelancers and internal writers to ensure content comes in consistent and well-optimized. Also, it poses important questions to answer (US or UK English? Oxford comma or not?) when you’re creating your own brand style guide.
The list above features some of my go-to cheat sheets, specifically for editing and writing better marketing content. Let me know if I missed some of your favorites by sharing them in the comments section below.
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