Content strategies that work

I’m pretty sure you already know, but in case you didn’t, here I’ll pass you some important information.

If you have a business and want to attract organic traffic to your website in order to sell your products or services you have to create content that people want to consume.

Nowadays every business is on the Internet and therefore there are millions of posts that are published every day. To be more exact there are about 440 million blogs in the world, so you get the idea.

Once you get over the funk you got into thinking about the amount of content that is published every day, what can boost your spirits is to come to the conclusion that if there are so many blogs it’s for one reason.

Because creating content works.

Publishing content helps to reach more people and create a relationship of trust with your target audience.

We all work very hard to earn a salary and that’s why we’re not willing to give our money away to just anyone. We choose very well what we want to buy, either because we like the product very much or, most of the time because we like the brand (or the person) behind it.

Sometimes building that relationship with your target audience takes some time, as with any type of relationship. First there is a phase of getting to know each other in which we decide if we like each other.

It’s the same with brands.

If you want to get your ideal customer to choose you from all the existing possibilities you have to build that relationship little by little.

Aggressive advertising doesn’t work, people don’t want to be told what to buy, people want to feel they choose.

And how can you start that conversation that will allow you to touch your target audience’ hearts?

Creating quality content to make yourself known and offer value for your audience to choose you when they are ready to buy.

Now let’s look at the main points to take into account in order to create quality content.

1.      Find your voice

In a business world full of online presence, it becomes very important to have your own voice. Don’t be afraid to be different and offer your point of view.

This is what will differentiate you from the hundreds of blogs that talk about the same subject and offer similar products or services.

Working as a copywriter and content creator I’ve met some clients who were reluctant to use a different tone or to talk a little bit about their personal story.

It’s been proven that if you offer a little bit of your personal story to your audience, they will feel more connected with you. It’s the same when we meet someone. We want to know a little about their lives so we can feel closer to them.

You don’t have to narrate your life in detail but including personal examples when you are writing a post on a specific topic or when you write your About Me page brings the reader closer to you and her interest increases.

In the end, behind every business, there is at least a person, people don’t want to hear business gibberish but stories that resonate with them.

Each person is unique and so is each business.

Write down anecdotes that happen to you while doing your shopping or going on holidays and use them in your content to illustrate a point of view or to give examples.

You don’t even have to say that it happened to you, you can use the typical cousin to whom all sorts of things happen.

Recently in a post I published on how to write email marketing I included an anecdote that happened to me personally. I explained in detail why an email I had recently received had worked so well and how they got me to buy what they offered.

By providing examples you explain a concept in a clearer and more enjoyable fashion.

Some people use humour, others suspense. You can play with words and even experiment with the tone.

Professional content creators like me can adapt our voices to each client according to the tone they want to convey.

An example of a company with its own voice is Laser Kitten

 

This irreverent high/low fashion brand for punky unicorns as they call themselves has 60K followers on Instagram and a peculiar voice.

They definitely have their own audience and you can like or not their products but they definitely have a unique and original message.

You can also find your voice, you just have to be yourself.

2. Create content on a regular basis

Unfortunately, publishing content once in a blue moon and when we have time for it doesn’t work.

Only by publishing content on a regular and scheduled basis will you get the results you want.

And I don’t say it just to be annoying, but because it has its logic.  Publishing content frequently will bring you these two great benefits:

  1. Your audience won’t forget you
  2. Google will allocate you a better position on the results page

To have a good relationship with your audience you have to think in the same terms as when you meet someone, if you suddenly disappear from their lives that relationship won’t go anywhere.

Well, it’s the same with your audience, you have to be there without being a pain. Publish content that interests your audience so they get to know you and can count on your expertise on a certain topic. Or they simply go to you because they have a good time watching or reading the stories, photos, videos and infographics you publish.

The second reason why it’s important to create content on a regular basis is that you’ll have a better chance of being given a more favourable ranking on the results page by Google.

As we have already seen, millions of posts are published every day, but Google gives priority to those websites that publish often and are therefore active.

There are also blogs created by people who are on it only as a hobby or even businesses that actually have inactive blogs, so Google will not offer those results except in very specific cases.

3. Share

In addition to getting organic traffic by direct search on Google, what will ensure you more visits to your website is sharing your content on social media.

Choose 3 or 4 channels (Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn) and make sure you share your content, always including a link to your website.

If you don’t add a link to your post on social media the traffic will stay on those channels and will not be diverted to your page, so don’t forget to make it easy for people to click on your link.

Audiences are different on each channel, the profile of people who are very often on Instagram is not the same as the one that reads content on LinkedIn.

You have to know your target audience very well to know where they are and what their preferences are.

Create content for them and share it on the channels they use.

For example, if you are a B2C company you will have to be present on Instagram especially if your audience is young.

If you offer B2B services you have to be on LinkedIn and perhaps Twitter, especially if you are in the marketing sector.

Almost everyone is on Facebook, for sure, all B2C products and services companies.

Study your target audience to find out their preferences.

If you opt for Instagram you will have to work your photos very well, since the content on this channel is mostly visual.

Tweets on Twitter should contain short and powerful messages, where a few words say a lot and provoke the desire to click in order to find out more.

YouTube videos attract a lot of organic traffic, especially if what you offer is an explanation of how to do something or a definition with practical examples.

Choose your channels and share.

4. Use informal and direct language

Most people don’t read anymore but scan. A person opens a post that interests him and his eyes start scanning the title, the headings, the phrases in bold.

Only if the content is very well written and the reader feels that they are speaking directly to him will he read the entire post.

Therefore, you have to write using a simple and direct language that touches the reader and doesn’t bore him.

Use short sentences and paragraphs of no more than three lines. When editing your text read it aloud to check the rhythm. If you think there are fragments that are monotonous try to break the rhythm by interspersing longer sentences with shorter ones.

You can also break the seriousness of the text by introducing some personal anecdote or funny example to attract the reader’s attention again.

Let’s look at an example. In this paragraph of an article I wrote on how to sell more to international customers, I explain why English is an easy language and why it has become the international language.

Talking about grammar is never fun, so I decided to add a personal anecdote to make it more enjoyable.

Writing content for marketing is very different than writing fiction. I’m telling you this from my personal experience.

I’ve been writing fiction for years and I’ve finished a novel that I want to publish someday.

When I started writing content for business I had to completely change the way I write. I had to relearn how to write for people who scan and read very fast.

I learned to break paragraphs and reduce the use of literary vocabulary to instead use a much simpler and direct language.

Fiction and business are two completely different ways of writing and reading.

If you also read fiction you’ll know what I’m talking about.

To be able to write either fiction or business content, you need to read a lot. Books will not only teach you many things about the subjects that interest you, but you also process new vocabulary and learn to express yourself better.

I’m always reading two books at the same time, one fiction and the other one about non-fiction topics that interest me.

5. Stand out

In addition to differentiating yourself from others finding your own voice, you also need to stand out.

And you can achieve this by doing things differently.

If you see that your competition only publishes articles, you can choose to create videos or infographics.

Or if you see that your competition publishes posts of 800 words try to write posts of 3000 words.

Do things differently to stand out without fear.

In an Express Writers’ article, they call this the Content Differentiation Factor.

And how can you find your Differentiation Factor?

By offering your point of view, which provides a slightly different and new twist on topics your readers have seen before.

It’s your way of looking at things.

Nowadays many people are afraid to give their opinion and to take a position on a certain topic. I perfectly understand, since there are many haters on the Internet that can make your life difficult and people don’t want problems.

But at the same time, if you always stay on the surface and don’t give your perspective on anything you will never be able to stand out from the crowd and ok, you won’t have haters, but you won’t have enthusiastic followers either.

You can’t please everyone.

 

Ver esta publicación en Instagram

 

Una publicación compartida por Laser Kitten (@laserkitten) el

I don’t ask you to be like the brand Lasser kitten that are super original but you get the message, right?

6. Quantity and Quality

Two concepts that should never be at odds. Choose, realistically, the frequency with which you want to publish content and make sure you publish quality.

Don’t sacrifice quality for quantity, otherwise, your effort won’t get the results you expected.

There is no point in publishing every day if the content is bad, boring or a mere piece of copycat which offers nothing new.

It is preferable to publish twice a month if the content is useful and enjoyable.

If you don’t have time to create frequent, quality content, one option is to hire someone to do it for you.

7.  Offer value

Choosing the topics you want to talk about is not an easy task. You have to put yourself in the shoes of your target audience and think about what they need and how you can help them.

Think about the problems they face every day or the type of reading or videos they consume.

There are several ways to learn more about the kind of content your audience likes.

  1. Looking at the Analytics results to see which posts on your blog have worked the best
  2. Asking your best customers what they would like to read
  3. Observing the comments they leave on your blog or on your competitor’s blog
  4. Developing concepts that have fallen short in other blog posts

By using these sources you will find topics to talk about and get your audience to follow you with interest.

Sometimes we think that everything has been said but surely no one has said it like you. You can always offer something new.

8. Write for others

When you start writing a blog or creating content for your website no one knows you. For the first few months you’ll only have friends and acquaintances who follow you. Then as long as you publish content regularly other people will become interested in what you have to say.

A quick way to get more followers is to write as a guest in other blogs of people in your sector who are well known.

Even if it hurts, you will have to reserve the best posts for those other blogs because slowly but surely they will bring followers to your own blog.

Maintain a good relationship with those well-known people in your own sector and offer to write for them.

The day someone asks you to write on your blog as a guest, you’ll know you’re on the right track.

If you’re like me you sure don’t like asking for favours or being a flatterer.

But you don’t have to see it that way.

If there are people you admire but they are far from your circle reach out to them and be honest in your comments, people like to receive positive comments if they are sincere.

Offer them help and always be considerate.

If they like what you write, they’ll probably say yes sometime.

If you don’t try, you’ll never get it.

9. Don’t give up

via GIPHY
Building a community of followers takes a long time. All the blogs you follow that have thousands of social media shares have been doing this for a long time.

The important thing is not to despair and persevere without getting in a funk looking at the anaemic results that Analytics spits in your face.

Celebrate your little successes, that post that was shared more times than ever, those 3 more likes your Facebook profile received last week, etc. The important thing is that you don’t stop.

Create an editorial calendar each quarter to simplify your work.

Sit down at the end of each quarter for a couple of hours and write down the topics you’re going to talk about in the next three months.

This way you’ll be more productive since you won’t have to spend time every week thinking about what you want to write and you’ll be able to crack on with your post or video quicker.

If you’re a creative person like me, being so organised will frighten you at first because you have the idea that planning is the worst enemy of creativity.

But you’ll soon realise that’s not the case. Many creative people schedule time on their calendars to be creative and generate ideas and although it may seem contradictory, it’s not. The brain is a muscle that can be trained for virtually anything.

Planning your editorial calendar ahead will make it easier for your creativity to fly free.

What I do is to reserve a space for improvisation too. Sometimes I change the calendar and introduce a topic that wasn’t planned simply because I want to talk about it. Maybe I read a book or an article that inspired me or perhaps I had an inspiring conversation. Whatever the reason might be.

The fact is that it is also important to feel free when creating content.

Conclusion

Creating quality content on a regular basis is what will bring organic traffic to your website and therefore more sales.

It’s true that it takes a lot of time and dedication, and it will be much more bearable if you like to write, but what is certain is that it’s an essential part of your business.

You basically have 2 options; one is to reserve at least 3 hours every week to create content and the second one is to hire someone to do it professionally for you.

Here I leave you an infographic so you can have it at hand when creating content.

Do you have any more advice for creating memorable content?

Leave your comments here. Thank you!

2 Comments

  1. […] with stories from Airstreamers so they can build a community of followers. As we saw in my previous article, having a content strategy and publishing posts and videos on a regular basis is really important […]

  2. […] something that didn’t exist in his time, we are talking about the 70s and 80s) is to have a content strategy which offers […]

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *