The world of digital marketing is constantly changing and evolving. As a content marketer it can be tough to know exactly how to create effective content that is engaging and exciting. Here are three tips that can help you gain an edge with your content strategy and make sure that what you are producing is the best it can be.
1. Timing is Everything
Keeping your content relevant often comes down to getting it out there as quickly as possible once news breaks. While it’s important to make sure that your writing is grammatically correct, clear, and concise, it’s equally important that it is published in a timely matter.
This is especially true for news releases. If a large company like Google or Amazon announces some major change to their platform, getting an article published quickly can be the difference between a post that goes viral and one that disappears faster than a politician’s promises on election day.
Remember, you aren’t the only one who thinks that content is important. In some ways, content marketing is a race to get something published before your competitors. Again, that doesn’t mean that you can just throw something together and expect to “win”. Your content still needs to contain substance and quality.
2. Don’t Bore Your Readers to Sleep
Far too often a blog post or article gets caught up in the bureaucracy of being too formal and data-centric. I call this the “Elegant Windbag Effect.” These pieces come off as stiff and can be tough to read without some semblance of humor, sarcasm, or at least a unique perspective.
You might have the most data-driven, brilliant, informative topic the internet has ever seen, but if you can’t make it interesting and exciting, it just doesn’t matter. People won’t read it. Sometimes it’s important to take a step back and look at things from a different point of view.
Let’s say you are writing about what you ate for breakfast. Does the average reader want a minute-by-minute analysis of each bite with a statistical breakdown of the number of chews? Maybe, if it’s a science experiment. Otherwise, your readers will disappear faster than that breakfast sandwich you just inhaled.
Sometimes it’s better to look at things from a big-picture perspective. Find out what’s important and remove all the gunk and boring filler. Add in a funny pop culture reference or pun if it’s relevant. Relate your content to everyday life. People love to read something and think “hey, I do that too!”
Do something to make the reader enjoy the content they’re consuming, not just read it for the sake of reading it.
3. Know Your Audience
Along with writing something fun and interesting, you need to make sure you know who you’re writing for. Sometimes, especially in text for a serious document like a white paper or report, you need to understand that your audience might be looking for something more in-depth.
That doesn’t mean it needs to be dry and have all the fun sucked out, it just means it needs to be more analytical and detailed. In these cases, it’s the tone of your writing that allows you to keep the content engaging and interesting. Talk about what the data means, how it impacts the audience who are reading it, and what they can do with it.
Other times, such as in blog posts or social media, you can make your content lighter and more personable. You can still fill it with insightful statistics, high-level data, and plenty of factual information, but you can also add a little more fun to it. That doesn’t mean throwing a mountain of kitten memes into your post and calling it a day. Well, maybe just one. Who doesn’t love kittens?
The point is, your writing style should match your audience. Think about who you want to read your piece, and tailor the content around that. If it’s meant for business professionals and CEOs, keep it professional. If it’s a blog for the masses, make it more casual.
These three tips may not teach you everything you need to know, but they are a solid base from which you can grow and improve your content marketing strategy. If you keep your audience in mind, make your pieces interesting, and post them as news breaks, you’re well on your way to becoming a content expert.