Content rules online marketing. Although strategies such as pay-per-click (PPC) advertising and SEO are still essential to the success of your business, your content is the focal point of your marketing strategies.
The content you provide through your website and blog provides the resources that people need when purchasing your products and services. It offers value in addition to your primary offers while providing your business with a credible voice.
The Main Ingredients for Effective Content
Although there are many ways to create compelling content for your ideal customers, there are fundamental elements that must be implemented in order to achieve results.
If you aren’t a writer, understanding how to use these elements gives you the tools to create content that resonates with your current and future customers. The following are the basics of creating effective content for your business:
- A consistent brand voice
- Headlines that drive traffic into your content
- Subheadlines that make your content “scannable”
- Use of multiple forms of media
- Storytelling structure
The content on your website or blog is your first impression. It’s the first opportunity a user has to learn about the value you provide.
As a result, your content plays a critical role in the success of your business. Poorly crafted content that fails to include the elements listed above can limit the performance of your website and blog.
Consistency in Content
Creating a strong level of consistency in your content makes it easy for your audience to know what they can expect from you now and in the future. Consistency comes from developing a unique brand voice—one that resonates with your ideal customer.
The language, tone, and pacing of your content must mirror those of users who are most likely to purchase your products or services.
The best way to identify this voice is by reviewing the comments and feedback provided by your audience.
Your blog, social media campaigns, online reviews, and other forms of engagement give you insight into the needs of your prospects as well as the ways in which they articulate them.
Once you’ve identified this, then you can begin targeting specific topics through your content.
Many analytics tools allow you to see information related to the demographics of responsive users. This allows you to create highly targeted content that will have a greater chance of success when focused on a particular interest, location, or demographic.
What’s Your Story?
Today’s marketers emphasize the need for storytelling in content. Many businesses make the mistake of sticking to the rules of writing.
As a non-writer, you may have an advantage by not having to unlearn many of the rules that get in the way of creating compelling content. Blogs and other online content should not be confused with technical brochure writing.
Rather than focus on impressing your audience with your writing skills, try to create a story around your services, customers, and brand.
Your audience not only wants to be informed, they also want to be enlightened, inspired, and entertained. Using a story structure within your content accomplishes these and other goals.
A good story draws the reader in with a hook (i.e., your headline). It establishes the major characters. In the case of your blog or website, characters consist of your business, your customer, or even the product you’re selling.
More importantly, your story must establish a common cause. This is typically the problem that your audience needs to solve. By uniting your users through the use of a common goal, your content becomes far more compelling than simply talking about the achievements of your business.
Content marketing is critical to success in today’s marketplace. But you don’t need to be a writer to produce compelling content that works.
Understanding the fundamental principles that create effective content gives you the tools you need to provide more value to your audience and grow your business.