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If I turned to the person on my left and said “what is content?”, they might say that content is blog posts and articles published on a website.
If I turned to the person on my right and asked the same question, they might say that content is short social media snippets.
And then you’ve got people who say that content is web copy like product descriptions. Or that it’s long-form white papers. Or that content is visual.
Content is a very tricky thing to define.
And this isn’t always what businesses want to hear. When there are so many different types of content, it can become challenging to see what type your audience wants to see.
If there’s a misalignment between what you consider to be good content, and what your readers consider to be good content, it’s not easy to attract and engage.
It’s important to know what content means to your audience and to provide them with something meaningful and valuable.
So how can you create great content that your audience really wants to see? Here are a few top tips...
It might sound obvious, but you’d be surprised at how many organisations pump out content without pausing to think about who they’re writing for.
To create content that your audience wants to see, you have to know what they’re looking for.
Your buyer persona comes in handy here. If you haven’t yet created one, check out my simple guide to building a buyer persona which covers all the core basics.
Understanding your audience allows you to tailor your content to better meet their needs, preferences, and interests. At the same time, it addresses their challenges and guides them towards solutions.
It’s also good for creating content that’s accessible. After all, if you’re targeting experienced professionals in a highly niche industry, broad, super-simple content may not be quite what they’re going to engage with.
Your business holds a huge amount of data about your audience.
Although some businesses find higher engagement rates with social media posts, news articles, and videos, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s true for your particular audience. Don’t assume that what works for others will always work for you, too.
You must conduct your own research, using data to identify engagement patterns with your existing content.
Tracking engagement with existing content means you can see what your audience is engaging with most.
Do they prefer long-form articles or short, snappy snippets? Do they respond more to a professional tone or a more informal message? Understand what works for your business, and what doesn’t.
Then use this information to create more high-performing content that attracts your visitors.
If you’re in the technology industry, your audience is probably going to expect content relating to the latest advances in AI, or machine learning, or other tech innovations.
They’re probably not going to expect news about construction. Your audience wants to read content that’s relevant to them. And relevant to the industry that you operate in.
I believe that every piece of content should begin with keyword research.
This shows you what your target audience is currently searching for, and allows you to plan content for each stage of the customer journey. This will give them what they want, when they want it.
Don’t work in silos; bring together all departments with insight into the customer journey, to create content that’s relevant to visitor needs.
The human brain works in very structured ways to help us store, categorise, organise, and recall pieces of information that we learn. And what many studies have found is that, in many cases, information is stored episodically.
This means that the brain tries to loosely connect bits of information to each other in a pattern or flow, for easier recall. The brain essentially turns lots of distinct pools of information into longer narratives.
It makes sense that content should be created in the same way, doesn’t it?
The human brain finds it easier to absorb information when it’s presented in a narrative form.
And so, incorporating storytelling into your content creation process can give your readers what they’re looking for… even if they don’t know they’re looking for it!
Try to create a natural flow in your content that guides readers through.
Perhaps the very last thing your visitors want to read on your website is something they’ve read before on your competitors’ sites.
They want something different. Of course, there are only so many potential topics out there.
So, rather than trying to find a subject that’s completely new, look at how you can convey the same message in a more creative way, or approach topics from a more unusual perspective.
For example, you could turn facts into infographics, or long subject matter into condensed ‘how to’ guides.
Another option would be to base your content on first-hand data; something that your readers really won’t be able to find elsewhere.
If you have data from customer surveys, previous focus groups, or from the research you’ve undertaken in-house, this can be just what your content needs to stand out.
You’ve probably heard the saying ‘content is king’. And it is. I mean, without content, you can’t create any sort of online presence.
Content is everywhere, from your web copy to your blog posts, to your PPC ads, to your directory listings… to absolutely everywhere else.
But your readers must be king, too.
There needs to be balance. If you put content before your readers, you’re likely to produce content just for the sake of it.
And if you put your readers before your content, you may not be doing much to properly promote your business.
The advice I always give is that nobody says you have to do this alone. At myCloud, we certainly don’t! We use marketing automation tools that help us to uncover what our clients’ audiences are searching for.
We use tools to analyse interaction with existing content. We ensure we’re delivering content that audiences want to see, and content that works for the business, too.
Thank you for contacting us.
We will reply to you in the next 24-48 hours.
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