Though you invest heavily to create inspiring and informative content, it may not be interesting enough and can go unnoticed. With a goal of creating content your target audience cares, here are some basic but important tips:
1. Know your audience – buyer personas
Before you start creating your content, first know who you are writing for. The more you know about them, the better. The details you learn will be helpful when creating buyer personas.
A buyer or consumer persona is a representation of your ideal customer(s) based on market research and real data about your existing customers. When you create a buyer persona, you should include not only demographics like age, gender and jobs but also their goals, hobbies, interests and challenges etc. – as much information as possible will help you understand “who are they?”
2. Answer their questions
After you have identified who you want to talk to, the next step is to consider the best way to answer their questions. A resource often disregarded but very useful are the employees of your company. For instance, the staff in the customer service or business development departments work with many customers each day and should know their questions and needs.
Another resource is Quora. Quora is a website where questions are asked, answered, edited and organized by its users. This is great for finding questions which you can turn into a strong content piece by simply answering them.
3. Show, don’t only tell
According to Cisco, video accounts for 69% of all customer internet traffic and other type of visual content such as infographics, slide shares and so on are more preferred types of content. Many are living in a rat race and may not have enough time to “read” content. 65% of people are visual learners and 90% of the information coming to the brain is visual. Don’t limit content to text only. Graphs, charts, images, infographics and videos can help deliver ‘ah-ha’ moments and inspire people to take action.
4. Stay on top of trends
It is very important to keep up with trends in your industry. Even if your content is perfect, readers will not be impressed if it is out of date. This includes keeping up with trends related to your industry. As discussed, visuals are extremely important and though marketing may not your field of expertise, you still should be familiar with how your customers are connecting with your content to stay relevant.
5. Make it easy to read
When you were a little kid, did you like to read? Did you avoid certain books? This might have been because the books were not interesting enough, had too many sentences or too few pictures. As people mature the issues of getting and keeping there is like capturing the hearts of kids. Especially important when you share a complicated topic, be careful to make your content easy enough for people to read. Shane Snow on Contently shares how most best sellers are written at a 7th grade level or below.
6. First Impressions are Lasting Impressions
The first impressions of your personality AND of your content are equally important. First impressions determine whether they want to keep reading. To give a good first impression, consider the previous point about understanding what people are interested in. If you offer ubiquitous content that is self-evident or ‘common’, or content that appears to be too complex, you can lose them in seconds. If you are creating content for rocket scientists? Deliver information they have not yet heard about and write it in such a way that only rocket scientists will understand.
Creating interesting content will not only keep your existing customers and visitors engaged but will also attract new potential customers. But before you begin to write, until there is an app to help us read minds… listen.