Read these 11 Content Creation Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Content Marketing tips and hundreds of other topics.
What's a website without content? Boring, for one thing.
Dynamic information, photos, breaking news, helpful articles and even videos keep people coming back to your Website. But high quality website content can help in other ways, too.
Share your slides and join the thought leadership bandwagon! Free services such as SlideShare.net, SlideRocket.com, and dozens of other communities allow you to get your thoughts out in presentation form and the views in. Add audio to your slides for maximum effect. These are truly communities, so join the fun and share great presentations.
A website dedicated to a focused topic allows readers to delve into the full story. Include words, images, video, white papers, guides, mobile feeds, and RSS feeds to offer greater opportunities for engagement and means of measuring success. Microsites also allow you to optimize certain phrases for the search engines to drive traffic from a wider pool of long-tail keyword phrases that are based on a particular theme. It's also easy to test their business-building potential because landing page optimization services are much easier to deploy site-wide.
Web readers move at high speeds, making it difficult to move them down the sales funnel. An eBook download catches them on-the-fly, induces trial, and showcases your experience. Associate your brand with something that solves problems, enlightens, and entertains by offering information in an eBook.
Offer free PDF downloads in exchange for action on your website helps improve conversions, not to mention that eBooks offer motivation for sales. An eBook exports your brand offline, straight into the hands of prospective customers. It's a cost effective solution that offers measurable returns.
Illustrate the features and benefits of what you offer to prospective customers by providing case studies of your current clients' positive experiences with your products, people, and services. Develop these case studies with your prospective customers' needs and wants in mind then jazz them up with informational graphics and good design. There's no better way to show them how you solve problems and delivered the ROI your clients demand.
Blogging is a great a way to earn trust and drive sales when (and here's the catch) it's done right. Expert experience shows that blogs need to be pubkished and kept up by your company's leaders to be effective. If necessary, educate your leaders on the fundamentals. Then reach out and start conversations on the web. The combination of a steady stream of engaging posts on your corporate blog along with posts on other sites will attract readers and support sales.
Know your customer base. Some customers want all the juicy details. In this case, longer, more thorough articles will appeal to this kind of reader rather than short tips and bulleted lists.Usually articles are more suited for complex subject matter, but don't let that distract you from the end goal: make a boring subject palatable. Just because it's long doesn't mean it can't be entertaining.
Ideally, web content should consist of short paragraphs of three to five sentences. Readers are looking for quick information and often find longer paragraphs unappealing. Shorter paragraphs allow readers to scan the information in order to determine whether they want to continue reading your website. Remember that, while shorter paragraphs may encourage readers to stay on your website longer, it is interesting and accurate content that will keep them there. Keep it short and keep your customers. Use bullet points to highlight the key points in your articles, giving readers a good overview of the article's contents. Easy-to-read text will also keep visitors interested and returning to visit. It never hurts your search engine placements to provide content that readers find appealing.
You already have one strike against you: readers view information sites created by companies as "biased" and ergo less valuable. But turning your website into a "destination" site for your target audience is an attainable, albeit ambitious, goal. When possible, commission industry leaders from outside your company to create smart articles and videos to validate your commitment to knowledge vs. sales. Keep rich content free of promotions and offer free tools that solve problems to confirm your commitment to thought leadership.
Don't trade bulk for quality when it comes to content; you have an obligation to evaluate the usefulness of your content to readers. Make it a habit to trim out the fat, replacing fluff with good stuff. Increase your traffic by offering interesting information, quality product or service descriptions, and helpful advice that solves problems. Though it may be tempting to focus merely on search engine optimization (SEO) strategies that are geared toward increasing rankings rather than providing a quality website, just remember that readership time on your site will decrease as a result of poor content. Search engines may be tricked, but readers will not. If your visitors are not impressed with your content, you'll never win the war of the words on the web. Great content is clear, simple, and easy to understand. Does your content meet those criteria? Or does it require explanation from sales people? Readers won't act on information they don't comprehend. Cut the fat and KISS--keep it simple, stupid. Communicate effectively by using smaller bits of information in clear, concise language.
You need more than just useful information to keep readers coming back for more; great content needs compelling and entertaining. Searchers and browsers are readers, too, so begin your successful content marketing strategy with great writers who can craft a story and tell it well. When reviewing prospective writers, ask them for content that goes beyond just useful information. If they don't have it, ask for a short sample will give you insight. Screening freelance writers' work carefully is important. Hire only the best, and you'll be doing your readers--and your business--a favor.