Your business needs content to survive online. Killer content if you want to thrive online. But how do you know if the content you’re creating will capture your audience’s attention, separate you from your competitors, and generate leads?
Just like that old Dolmio pasta sauce ad, to wear that all important killer content grin, you need to put the good things in. My trick to remembering the ‘good things’ is all in the word – Creative, On-point, Narrative, Targeted, Engaging, New, Timely
This may seem like a bit of a no brainer, but you might be surprised at the number of businesses who subscribe to the ‘churn and burn’ approach. Basically, they know they need to produce content, but don’t pay much attention to the purpose or value of the piece they are putting out there.
For your content to stand out amongst the noise, it needs to be creative. Try injecting a bit of personality or incorporate storytelling to convey your message. There is nothing worse than stumbling onto an About Us page that begins with “Our business was established in 1999 by blah blah blah…”
Don’t be afraid to take a different approach when communicating your business’ value, service and / or product. Think about what motivated you to start your business, who was involved, if anything unusual or interesting happened in the development process. These stories can spark creativity and help you produce content that is engaging.
And don’t forget to add value. No matter what you are writing or talking about, your audience needs to understand from the outset that they will get something out of investing 5 minutes or so digesting your content. If the value is not clear, they will lose interest and move on. Potentially to your competitor.
When I say on-point (apart from utilising an ‘o’ word to fulfil this blogs’ premise), I am referring to your contents’ purpose and relevance. Not only should your content reflect your business and expertise, but your content needs to be relevant to your audience. To do this, you need to step into your customer’s shoes, listen to their problems, and respond with timely, targeted and relevant content.
While you should mostly aim to produce what is known as ‘ever green’ content (those long-standing articles that can be reused and repurposed), it can be pertinent for your business to inject articles in your content plan that respond to current events or situations that are relevant to your audience. This will not only indicate to your customers that you are on top of the latest trends and issues that are occurring in your industry, but will also help you to establish authority in your field.
Gone are the days when a toothy-grinned salesman in a suit could snag a customer’s interest. Your customers want more than just flashy features or corny catchphrases. They want a solution, and possibly the chance to buy into a certain lifestyle or experience. One of the best ways to present your solution is through good narrative or stories. Stories can help your business connect with customers on an emotional level, augment trust, and demonstrate the true value of what you are offering.
It is important to remember that regardless of whether your marketing is business to business, or business to consumer, you are engaging with people. People don’t like to do business with brands. They like to do business with people. Through narrative, your killer content can harness a personal touch that provides your audience with a unique insight into what makes your business tick and why they should engage with you.
Producing targeted content has become a pretty major trend in online marketing. Essentially, when we talk about targeted content, we are talking about content that is created for specific subsets of your general audience, or as they are often referred to as personas. You know, those target groups that are brought down to a fictional character like Sales Sally or Manager Matt? The idea is that you have a good understanding of who the people are in your target audience and create content that speaks directly to them.
So why should you go to the effort of understanding and creating personas? The answer is simply that you will be able to successfully market to their needs. By producing content that specifically caters to the needs of an individual, you will elicit better engagement, increase sales, improve customer satisfaction and build your authority.
In this ever-increasing clickable-shareable-tweetable-pokable-scrollable world we live in, you want your content to stop your audience in their tracks, perhaps even take their breath away, and absorb something unexpected, enlightening, entertaining and interesting. How can you do this? By creating something that is truly engaging, and I believe that the best place to start is with a good story.
I have already spoken about using narrative to offer a personal touch, but stories have an ability to tug at the heart strings and drive emotional engagement. Using stories and taking an emotional approach with your content will help your customers believe your message, relate to the context, decide and remember the experience. And we all know that being memorable (in a good way) is key to encouraging return visits and purchases.
One of the most important things to consider when writing or creating killer content is that it should be new. Now this doesn’t necessarily mean you must come up with completely new ideas every time you produce a blog or video. But you should be sure to make it your own. By producing your own stories, and not just ripping off something from a website that you liked, you will be creating unique and new content for your audience.
Killer content requires a mix of planning and spontaneity. You should be flexible in your approach to creating content so you can ensure you are responding to current topics and issues, while still offering value. But remember, when producing timely content, make sure it is relevant to your industry and doesn’t seem as though you are talking about it just to maintain credibility.
Timely also refers to the time you choose to share your content. Be smart about the platforms you choose, and assess when your audience is using it. Are you best to share your content in the evening, or are your people more active during work hours? Knowing when to share can mean the difference between just your mum sharing the piece and you hoping that Aunty Susie catches wind of it and shares it around the world, or getting your killer content in front of the eyeballs of those who matter (sorry mum).
When creating any form of content the goal is for it to be seen, consumed, loved and shared. If you can produce an About Us page, a video or a blog that speaks directly to your audience, offers true value, responds to their needs, and provides them with a unique insight into the what, when, where, why and how of your business; you have nailed the killer content concept.
Drop me an email if you are looking to lift your content game and need some help creating killer content for your business.