If you are anything like myself when I started writing, then you are asking yourself, how do you stand out from all of the others and get your audience to take notice and engage with your content?
When I started writing content at the beginning, it was hard for me to find anything to write down (with speaking I don’t have this problem) but, I had to change the way I was thinking of writing to begin with. I soon found out that in order for me to write good content, I had to make it feel like if I was speaking naturally. I had to write like if I was having a normal conversation with someone. To some it is natural but, others have learn and perfect their talent.
People are exposed to messages consistently, so much in fact, that it becomes noise. There are some key fundamentals that have to be addressed, like taking the time to identify and define what type of content will grab your audience’s attention. We’re often concerned as marketers, business owners, SEO professionals, and content writers, of creating content that is different from everyone else in our industry.
What if we lose our audience?
What if we’re too different?
There is a time and place for safe content, but there is also a time to be interesting, different and even edgy.
Don’t Be The Hero
The minute you make your brand the focal point of your content is the minute you lose your audience.
Your customer is the hero — bring them into your brand story, show them the integral role they play.
Having clearly defined personas or customer segments help you identify what’s important to your customer and how to engage them.
It’s More Than Keywords
If your content creation strategy is based solely on keyword research, it isn’t much of a strategy.
You have to analyze your keyword research through the lens of your content strategy (the overlap between brand goals and audience needs).
Only then will you be able to determine which keywords are truly going to resonate with your audience and map back to your business objectives.
Separate Yourself From The Crowd
Is everyone creating content about GDPR?
Sometimes the trending topics are unavoidable but, if you can’t provide a unique perspective on trending topics, you’re just contributing to the noise.
If you really want to avoid clutter, take a look at what your competitors are doing … and do the opposite!
Filling a gap in the conversation is a great way to push your thinking and engage your customers.
Learn From Your Mistakes
If you aren’t measuring what content is working and what content is falling flat, you’re missing out on valuable signals.
If your recent article/post failed to get the traction you were hoping for, your audience is most likely trying to tell you something. Get to know your customers or visitors and know what they want to read about.
Rinsing and repeating will likely serve up similarly disappointing results.
You might or might not know that evergreen content is an important part of any SEO and content marketing strategy but, it rarely has the opportunity to capture trending topics or cultural occurrences.
Leave room in your editorial planning for content that taps into themes important to your audience at specific moments in time.
Mix Up Your Editorial Planning
It’s time to mix it up.
There are wonderful content stories hidden at every level of your business (or your client’s business) you simply have to create an environment where they can flourish.
- Invite a member of the call center to your next planning meeting.
- Ask a product marketer to contribute some topics that excite them.
- Plan an interactive editorial brainstorm.
- Invite a representative from every department to participate.
Getting outside perspective is a great way to add diverse voices to your content mix, and will have your editorial calendar feeling fresh and exciting in no time.
Why Is Great Writing Important?
Great writing is important but, also because a true misfortune for any business would be to work hard to build a useful product or provide a meaningful service, but then fail to explain it in ways that resonate with not just your customers, but employees, vendors, shareholders and the communities you work in and serve.
Innovations In Your Field?
Traditional approach has been to tell/show your products, give a call-to-action and wait for sales.
Now we share our story to talk about not only our what (product or service we’re selling) and how (process we use to make product or provide service), but also our why (reason for being).
We are seeing this more and more.
The sharing of your purpose through thoughtful storytelling and the providing of events or activities that show your brand understands and maps to the ways customers want to engage with your brand.
Doing this develops more immersive, emotional, and transactional experiences for your customers in both the online channels they are on and the offline experiences they appreciate.
What You’ve Learned ?
You have a brain. It’s wired in its own way, uniquely for you. And however you’re using it right now, there are more applications, more uses for it. Have confidence in it and yourself.
I can’t promise you every other application of your creativity is better than what you’re doing now, but I can promise you there’s always another one out there.
Share what you’re thinking, dreaming, doing. Be honest. Don’t be afraid to reach out.
We are naturally curious, and the good ones of us will get excited by that curiosity and look for ways to help. So tap into that curiosity and positivity.
Become a Hoarder
At one point in my writing career, I wasn’t producing as much content like I wanted, mainly because of time.
If I told you how many articles, landing pages, and blog posts I was writing each month, you would think that I didn’t care about my business.
One of my secrets and something that help me a lot was a little notepad I kept in my back pocket.
Every time I came across something interesting, whether it was a magazine article, mailer, advertisement, etc., I would write it on my notepad for inspiration later.
If I heard something interesting on television or radio, I would do the same thing, I would simply jot it down and save it.
Not all of these items were relevant to my clients, but they did inspire creativity.
When it was time to write, I would go through the notepad and think of how I could use the topic, format, etc. for my own article.
Hey, It works.
Remember To Break The Rules
Almost every activity has a set of predetermined rules and ways of doing things.
Some of the most famous inventors, artists, and writers weren’t afraid to break the rules.
Who says you have to write the standard blog that follows the format, topic, and style of everyone else in your industry?
Think outside the box.
Look Outside Your Field
We’re taught to pay attention to our competitors and what they are doing. That is sound advice, especially when it comes to SEO.
However, looking beyond our competitors when it comes to content topics can help uncover a goldmine of ideas.
For example, if you come across a great article that has nothing to do with your field, dissect it. Analyze it. Re-mold it.
Think of ways you can use that article as a guide to creating your own content masterpiece.
This tip definitely depends on your industry, because it won’t work for all of them. Creating something edgy or shocking can get you attention, but both good and bad.
If you go this route, you need to first consider the risks and rewards associated with creating this content.
I would consider my target audience. Would they find this content intriguing?
Don’t fall into the trap of only creating safe and boring content. Stand out. Be bold. Be brave. Have some fun. And remember to write like your having a normal conversation with a friend. If you think of it that way, it will definitely make it easier to write more and better content that will keep visitors engaged and returning for more. Now the only thing to do now is to get started and be creative. Good Luck.