Journalism/Storytelling/Writing

My Latest Freelance Articles in Horizon Airlines, Other Magazines

Posted by M. Sharon Baker
My Latest Freelance Articles in Horizon Airlines, Other Magazines

In addition to writing B2B content for corporate clients, I continue to flex my journalism muscles from time to time.

Redefining Retirement photo

I wrote a fun article about what Baby Boomers are doing in their retirements for Horizon Airlines, which published in its December issue.

From moving to Mexico, to landing patents and starting a business, to becoming an artist, this story covers a lot of ground.

I posted Redefining Retirement here for you to read.

 

 

Another ArticleComfort &Value at Home

I’ve been remiss in posting a previous article I wrote for Horizon called Comfort and Value @ Home, which I’m including here as well.

The story is about how homeowners are renovating their homes for sale or to better match their lifestyle needs.

Click to Read: Comfort at Home Horizon Story.

 

 

Flying the Friendly Skies in 2015

I’m happy to report I’m writing two more articles:

  • Being Financially Fit in 2015 for Alaska Airlines
  • How homeowners are adding green items to their homes, for Horizon

 

My story for Seattle Business on Evluma, a fast growing Seattle firm you probably haven’t heard of, was recently published as well.

Check out Evluma Shines with Streetlight Retrofits here.

 

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Journalism

Retired or Semi Retired Baby Boomer in Western U.S.?

Posted by M. Sharon Baker

I’m writing a story for Horizon Airlines magazine on what Baby Boomers – aged 52-68 – are doing in their retirement years and what tips they have to share for others contemplating retirement.

I’m looking for stories about:

  •  How you are taking charge of your health and dietcolored pencils in can msb
  •  What you’re doing to keep your mind sharp
  • Where you are traveling
  • How are you cultivating and nurturing your social life
  • How are you developing new friendships or learning new skills
  • Have you started a new business
  •  Moved into a retirement home
  •  Started a farm
  • How are you pursuing your passion

 

I’m looking for people in the Western U.S., specifically  including:  Eugene, Medford, Klamath Falls, Redmond/Bend, Coos Bay/North Bend, EurPalouse clouds (2) (640x427)eka/Arcata, and Redding.

Also Fresno, Santa Barbara, Long Beach, Boise, Sun Valley, Idaho Falls, Pocatello, and Lewiston.     And also: Bozeman, Missoula, Great Falls, Butte, Billings, Yakima, Walla Walla, Bellingham, Wenatchee, Port Angeles, Denver,  Sonoma County, Monterey, and the Reno/Tahoe area.

Seattle, too.

In addition to telling me your story, please include tips do you want to share with those getting ready for retirement.

I am also looking for expert sources who can talk about what Baby Boomers are doing in retirement.

If you’d like to share your story, please put your city and some idea of your tip or story in the subject line, and email me at:

msharonbaker@hotmail.com

Please  include your age, location and previous occupation in the email. I will select sources for the article based upon your responses, so be sure to include a lot of details.horses running outline (640x427)

Feel free to share this with your friends who are doing cool things in retirement or semi-retirement.

Or, you could leave me your story in the comments.

Your choice. Thanks for your help.

 

 

 

 

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Journalism/Writing

Freelance Journalist Wins 4 WA Press Association Awards

Posted by M. Sharon Baker

Once in a blue moon, I find I need to write a press release about myself. Here’s the latest, which I’m writing for my local newspaper.

 Freelance Journalist Wins WA Press Association Awards

Freelance Journalist M. Sharon Baker won four awards from the Washington Press Association for her online and magazine work.MSFT The One That Started snip (415x527)

The Anacortes resident won two First Place awards, a Second and a Third from the WPA, which is an organization of Washington State professional communicators including print and online journalists, public relations practitioners and students in these fields.

Baker won:

  • First Place, Features, food for “Seattle’s Pizza Wars”, a story about the growth of startup MOD Pizza and other new pizzerias that plan national rollouts, which ran in the March 2013 issue of Seattle Business.

 

 

  • Second Place General News for “Startup Generates Electricity from HVAC System Thanks to UW Design, Testing” for the University of Washington’s magazine, The Trend in Engineering.

 

  • Third Place Business/Technology for “The One that Started It All:,” a story on Microsoft Corp.’s efforts to help startups for ID8Nation’s Seattle digital magazine.

 

A former reporter with The Skagit Valley Herald, The Puget Sound Business Journal, and the defunct Journal American of Bellevue, Baker has been an independent journalist since 2001. Her recent work appears in Nation’s Restaurant News, Alaska Airlines magazine and Seattle Business, among other publications.

Baker is also a freelance content writer who helps companies connect with customers by writing case studies, white papers, web copy and other marketing materials.

–30–

 

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Content Marketing/Journalism/Writing

Why B2B Marketers Hire Journalists to Create Content

Posted by M. Sharon Baker
Why B2B Marketers Hire Journalists to Create Content

(I’m busy gathering additional samples of good B2B content since story telling is top of mind for many marketers. In the meantime, I was asked why journalists are being touted as good hires to create content. Here’s my take.)

A number of content marketing experts are telling corporations to hire experienced journalists, which they sometimes call brand journalists, (a term that causes me to wince – here’s why) to create a lot of the content needed for lead nurturing programs, web site copy, and other marketing materials.

NRMPR-book_aThese experts include David Meerman Scott, author of The New Rules of Marketing and PR, Joe Pulizzi, author of Epic Content Marketing and co-author of Get Content Get Customers, and Ann Handley, co-author of Content Rules.

Businesses of any size looking to create great content have a simple solution: hire a journalist says Scott.

Adds Pulizzi:

 Let’s face it: Marketers are busy focusing on driving demand for their products. It’s difficult to step back and think about products from the customer’s informational perspective. But that’s just what journalists’ do.

Why journalists, you may ask. And don’t all of them work for newspapers or magazines, you may wonder.

Many journalists lost their jobs during the recession, others saw what was happening and left on their own. From 2000 to 2010, the last time I looked, 66,000 journalists had lost their jobs due to layoffs. Here’s a sampling of the 30,000 or so that lost their jobs in the three years of 2000 to 2003, which I mentioned in my first blog post. So there are a lot of journalists looking for work.

Scott, Pulizzi and Handley, who previously was a journalist, recognize that journalists possess the skills and training that allow them to create interesting, compelling content effortlessly.

content rules book cover

17 Reasons Marketers Should Hire Journalists

Journalists:

  • Know how to tell a compelling story with tension
  • Are great listeners and superior interviewers
  • Are quick studies and critical thinkers
  • Are resourceful and full of creative content ideas
  • Know how to research and find things quickly

They also:

  • Are experts at dealing with deadlines
  • Easily juggle multiple tasks
  • Think and organize before they write
  • Use snappy, active words
  • Keep themselves out of their writing

Get Content cover

 

And, they:

  • Write tight
  • Write conversationally
  • Shun adjectives, puffery and jargon
  • Write short sentences moving readers along
  • Often can summarize a story in a great headline
  • Know how to change writing styles to match different audiences and media types
  • Provide an outsider’s view of your company

 

The ability to write tight, get to the point quickly and keep things simple are concepts every corporation needs, whether they are selling a product, building a brand or looking for leads. Journalists are a good match to help busy marketers that need to focus on more strategic aspects of their jobs.

 

What traits am I missing? Are there other reasons for hiring a journalist for B2B content creation?

 

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Case Studies/Content/Journalism/Marketing/Writing

Case Studies, Articles, White Papers, Press Releases & Blog Posts: What I’ve Been Writing

Posted by M. Sharon Baker
Case Studies, Articles, White Papers, Press Releases & Blog Posts: What I’ve Been Writing

I profiled Betsy and Warren Talbot of Married with Luggage for Intuit's Small Business Blog

It’s summer and I’ve been so busy creating content for clients and magazines that I have not had time to brainstorm topics for the blog or update my website.

Many times, this content takes a while to show up on the web.

Below is a list and some links to what I’ve published/created so far this year.

In some cases, confidentiality or still in progress work prohibits me from sharing.

 

Writing for Corporate Clients:

I profiled Betsy and Warren Talbot of Married with Luggage for Intuit's Small Business Blog

I’m a member of the blogging team for Intuit’s Small Business Blog. Some posts include:

For Intuit’s Go Payment Blog I’m writing case studies paired with videos:

 

I continue to write case studies for RainToday.com

 

I collaborated with Gail Harker and her students to write a contributed article for a new industry publication called Fiber Art Now.

Developing the Fiber Artist Within at The Gail Harker Creative Studies Center

 

I’ve written several  press releases, including:

I'm helping Carol Tice and David Lester promote their book

 

 

I can’t share details, but I’ve also been working on:

  • 2 White papers, 1 for data center client, another for a high tech firm
  • 4 B2B Lead Nurturing Articles plus emails, three for networking client, one for call center
  • 16B2B Blog posts for networking client partners
  • Press Release and Media Pitching for financial firm

 

 

I also still “commit” Journalism:

 

For Tech Target:

For Nation’s Restaurant News:

 

 

  • Open Kitchens, Diner Involvement: Keys to Cashing in on Chef, Cooking Craze
  • Vegetarian Sausage, Burgers, Other Vegetarian Items Now Mainstream

For Seattle Business:

  • Mothers of Invention: Despite the daunting economy, Washington has plenty of ‘mompreneurs” bravely starting new businesses.
  •  Later this year, another story on Women-owned Seattle Area Businesses

 

By taking stock of what you have accomplished this year, you can see what might be expanded into a case study, additional links for your website or a list of people to survey for testimonials.

 

How do you keep track of what you’ve done so you can use those projects to your advantage? I’d love to hear your best practices in the comment section below.

 

Photos © Warren Talbot, M. Sharon Baker, MOD Pizza

 

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