A guide to creating valuable content
With reduced attention spans, a rise in ad blockers, and a growing desire to adhere to consumer demand, traditional advertisements aren’t all that effective anymore. That’s where the importance of valuable content comes in.
What it means when they say content is king
The content that you create is one of the most important aspects of your digital marketing strategy. What you produce in terms of content is what provides value and education for your target demographic, in turn building trust and a connection with your dream clients. It also acts as a catalyst for other marketing techniques, as strong content can be linked to all over the web, increasing traffic to your website and boosting your online visibility, both in terms of SEO and social media. It’s the base upon which you promote your business online, so it’s extremely important to produce good content.
Content marketing requires a steady investment from a business. It takes time, energy, and money to develop a successful content marketing strategy and plan. However, if executed properly, the payoff has the potential for huge returns on your investment.
So how do we create valuable content that is as effective as possible at connecting with our target audience?
Here, I’ve outlined a step-by-step guide to creating valuable content!
Research your target demographic & locate them!
Before you create your content, you need to do the work and figure out who your dream client is. There’s no use in you creating content without a clear audience in mind, or your efforts will be wasted. You’ve got to do the work in identifying your audience, finding out where they are, and then making an active attempt to reach them. Consider if your audience might be reading blogs, looking for a free give-away, found on social media (on a specific platform), subscribing to newsletters, following competitors’ websites, watching YouTube or even listening to podcasts.
Once you’ve located your dream client’s online sphere, you can create content that will be best delivered to your specific audience on those platforms. The content that users read quickly forms their opinion of you and your company. That’s why the most successful content will deliver value-first information and continue to satisfy a reader’s needs throughout.
Develop a content strategy
A content strategy is what will keep your content fresh, thoughtful and engaging for your intended demographic. When devising a content strategy, it’s important to identify the core topics that your business aligns with. While it’s important to include trending topics to keep your brand relevant and visible, it’s also important to have other ways to source ideas for your marketing strategy. Here are three ideas to help plan your topics as well as your overall strategy:
Your target demographic: Ask your potential clientele about what topics they’d like you to discuss in your content strategy. Use surveys, social media polls and talk to existing clientele to find out what people really want you to talk about. Check out Google Trends, Twitter, Facebook, and join LinkedIn groups where customers and others in your industry sound off on what’s most important to them.
Competitor content: Check-in to see what your competitors are doing, what’s working for them and what’s not working for them. You’ve got a shared audience, so taking inspiration from their strengths will help to build a content strategy that your audience is truly interested in.
Annual events: Events that happen throughout the year can also provide inspiration for upcoming content.
Create an engaging headline
If you want to get your content noticed, you’ll need a great headline. This starts from the headline, and which is why “click-bait” posts are so ubiquitous these days. Make your title so clever that your audience will HAVE to check out what it’s all about!
Write creative, unique & valuable content!
In order to build your brand and give clients a positive opinion from the onset, the focus should be on delivering content that is creative, that understands the industry and uses familiar topics, but STILL stands out from the rest. This is no easy task, and one that demands a fresh approach to content creation, outside of templates and keyword goals. Consider the following questions to determine if your content is rave-worthy and shareable:
Is it readable?
Make sure to keep the topic on point and use headings that create a logical flow to the content. Try to break up sections and avoid using industry jargon which might confuse your reader.
Is it relevant?
Make sure your content topic is currently fresh and relevant, capturing the interests and acknowledging the pains of your dream clients. Make sure that the topic relates back to your business well and includes a story that your audience can relate to.
Is it personable?
Remember that through your content, you’re delivering a narrative, which is essentially telling a story. Your content needs to be emotive to be able to connect with your audience. Make sure that your content includes actionable insights to help your audience answer pains or give guidance on your expertise.
Is it actionable?
The whole point of creating content is to influence your dream client to take action after reading your content, so make sure to include a clear call-to-action to make that happen! If your content is share-worthy, your readers might want to tell their friends and peers to read the same content, so also make it easy for them to comment or share to make this process as streamlined as possible for them.
Remember that creativity doesn’t stop with your content. It should be found in every aspect of your digital marketing strategy, from content to design and even how and where you share!
Expand your reach
One of the best ways to expand your content marketing reach is to get exposure through someone else’s audience. Here’s how:
Create high quality and shareable content on your website to show off your expertise within your zone of genius.
Partner with other companies that have synergy with your brand. You should both be willing to share and engage with each other’s content; consequently, opening you up to both of your audiences.
Reach out to outlets looking for guest writers and experts to contribute to their site, blog or publication. This is a great way to expand your reach and get referral traffic from high-traffic niche sites.
Stay active on social and interact with your audience, partners, and other thought leaders—especially if it’s on other people’s high quality content.
Make sure that whenever your bio appears somewhere—on your website, under a contributor post, on social media, etc.—that it links back to your website.