Quick Tip:
Handling Text Boxes So They Enhance Your Promotion

Pictures, graphs, diagrams, quotes, and other types of "extra" copy are all important pieces of a strong promotional package. They help build credibility and break the visual impact of an all-text page.

However, these extra elements can cause problems when you include them in the main body of your promotion (where you intend them to be).

These items have a way of shifting around when files are opened on different computers. In addition, as far as your client is concerned, the most important element of your promotion is the copy for the main letter – and including text boxes, illustrations, or the like can be distracting. You want him to concentrate on your words when he first reviews what you've written.

The best way to deal with this problem is to send two clearly labeled versions to your client.

The first one is the version that showcases your main letter. Extra elements like text boxes are relegated to the end of the file (before the end notes). Indicate where you want these elements to appear by inserting instructions along the left side of the document … like this:

{INSERT TEXT BOX #1 ("Dr. Smith's Love for His Father") NEAR HERE}

{INSERT FIGURE #4 (Dr. Smith's photo) NEAR HERE}

I prefer using curly braces and all caps to distinguish instructions from other types of copy.

The second version of your promo – clearly labeled – is properly formatted with all the images, text boxes, etc. in place. If possible, send as a PDF file so everything stays where you want it to be.

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The Professional Writers’ Alliance

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Published: September 17, 2007

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