Content Marketing Essentials: Three Steps to Consistently Effective Content

Old-fashioned typewriter

It was once limited to customer magazines and direct mail, but content marketing today is a wide-ranging operation for many businesses. In order to stand out in today’s crowded online environment, blogs, email newsletters, articles, social media content, whitepapers, and video have become an important part of every business’ content marketing arsenal. Essentially, there are three ways to approach content creation, but when combined they can give your business the edge over the competition.

Persuade

Great content needs to be persuasive to get results. Many companies fall into the trap of using over-complicated language because they think it makes them sound knowledgeable, but this approach does little for credibility. Most readers are actually turned off by corporate-sounding content. In fact, research has shown that people respond best to advertisements with straightforward language. To be more persuasive, try to ensure your language is uncomplicated and sincere.

Using simple language does not mean your ideas have to be ordinary. Leading brands consistently produce content that is exciting and original. They share their opinions and are not afraid to show their individuality. What is stopping your business from doing the same? Use your opinions to generate interest in your brand. People are more cynical than ever before, and being passionate will only strengthen your brand in the minds of consumers who are looking for integrity. Bear in mind the popularity of your views and check they are in line with your target audience. When done right, this type of content can attract extensive media coverage.

Persuasive content is essential if your audience is not entirely sure what it wants. Explaining the benefits of your products and services should be the priority. Look at what you offer from the point of view of your ideal customer. How will they benefit from purchasing your products or services? Why would they be wise to choose your brand over the competition? Producing content that clearly explains how they will benefit from doing business with you is far more effective than uninspiring product descriptions.

Educate

The next step is to tell your audience something they don’t already know. Teaching consumers something new has always been an important part of content marketing because it makes people feel empowered and also enhances your authority. What do your prospects and customers need to know? Think about what they can learn about your products and services and turn it into compelling and informative content they will want to share with others. Many businesses fail to give practical advice even though this is exactly what many consumers are looking for online. Prove that your company can provide them with the solutions to their problems.

It can be difficult to stand out from the crowd, especially if you are among many other businesses in your industry sector. This makes it even more important to approach content marketing with originality and deliver content that is inspirational. Creating consistently unique content will help your company attract more attention and give consumers more confidence in your brand. Instead of rehashing old ideas, try to say something new. Why not communicate information in a format that others have not? For example, instead of writing another blog post, create a video that addresses the subject from a fresh perspective. A company study is another great way to attract media attention and promote your brand. Is there something your company can research and then publicize across various online channels?

Captivate

There are different ways to make content interesting. Storytelling has an important role in content marketing. It injects more personality into your brand and keeps readers coming back for more. Storytelling has always been a fundamental part of human communication and it can strengthen your marketing messages instantly. It does not necessarily involve creating long, drawn-out articles. Even a series of Tweets can build a narrative. Just remember to include useful information within your content to keep readers fully engaged.

Instead of simply publishing positive stories about your business, why not write about the difficulties your company has faced and the challenges you overcame? Admitting you are fallible will only strengthen brand credibility. People are more likely to remember content that they can relate to, so don’t be afraid to show the human side of your company. Photographs and pictures of employees will also help people connect with your brand. Using generic images of people found on stock photography sites does nothing to inspire confidence in your company.

The Next Step

Next time you are ready to create content, think about your target audience and make sure your tone and style matches your company philosophy. Once you have found your voice, make sure it is consistent across all your content channels to solidify your brand personality. Combining techniques from all three examples outlined above will make your content even more powerful in the long run. Publish persuasive, educational, and captivating content and your business will be ready to compete with the best in your field. With imagination and a consistent strategy, you can prove that you don’t necessarily need a big budget to succeed in content marketing.