11 Ways to Create More Engaging and Better Content
The secret is out. Great content is the magic ingredient that can help your business produce more sales. Content is so valuable that businesses are feverishly trying to keep their websites and blogs updated with content that keeps their readers constantly engaged with their brand.
Your business could have a product or service that is better than your competitors, but if your competition has great content, they’re the ones your target market will purchase from.
Because of this, you need to learn how to create the type of content that people can’t pass up. This is the content that people read line by line to learn key insight about their industry, and then eagerly share what they have read on their social media profiles.
When you have great content, the sale of your products or services becomes easier. Your content does the selling for you because it demonstrates your expertise within your industry.
When readers see that you have vast knowledge in marketing, sales, or whatever they want to improve on, they will want you to impart your knowledge on to them. The reader’s goal is to learn how to become successful, and your content needs to communicate that you can help them produce the wanted results.
How to Improve Your Content
We provided you with the formula for outsourcing great content last month. If you haven’t read it, do so now. If you are hiring writers to create your content for you, this article will help you guide the writer towards producing great content.
If you’re going to be responsible for creating your own content, then you will need to know some techniques that will help you create content gold. Creating content is serious work, so you can’t just throw anything together and expect it to create the engagement that you want.
The authority blogs that you read put a lot of time into their content. The writers of very popular blogs go through a process of fine tuning their content to publish content that is nothing less than superior quality.
When editing, your favorite blogger will:
- Analyze the entire article line by line for any contradictions, repetition, or clarity issues
- Trim away filler words
- Reduce paragraph lengths
- Check for any grammar and punctuation mistakes
- Let an editor review their content before the final posting
If you want your content to help you sell more products and compel your readers to inquire about your services, you will need to implement the best practices that your favorite blogs are using.
The following tips will help you to create the content that not only builds your audience but also increases your cash flow.
1. Thoroughly Research Your Topic
Writing without doing research will lead to you creating low quality content. Low quality content is difficult to follow because you will be writing off the top of your head, making things up as you go.
Great content digs deep into the subject matter, so readers can completely understand why a problem exists and how a solution is produced. Knowing how to write in such detail, without including fluff, means that you have to do some research.
Doing the proper research will allow you to write with ease and create a well crafted piece of content. This is content that explains the subject in depth and which transitions well when writing about a different topic within your subject matter.
One of the best ways to research your topic is doing a Google keyword search. Type in the keyword you plan to use and view the keyword terms people have searched for related to the topic.
After doing your keyword research, look at other blogs that have written about the subject you plan to write about. You want to learn how they wrote about the subject. You don’t want to copy their voice or their words, but you want to learn about the main points you should cover in your content.
2. Create an Attention-Grabbing Headline
Your headline is the first thing that the reader sees, and sometimes the only thing, so it is often the deciding factor in whether your content gets read. Therefore, first impressions are everything when it comes to your headline. You want a headline that pulls people in, that makes them wonder what hidden knowledge could possibly be contained within the content you have written.
Don’t make the mistake of writing a headline that communicates what the content is about but which doesn’t communicate the value that is being provided.
For example, which headline compels you to read the following article?
10 Ways to Learn How to Make Money-Buying Websites
The 10 Steps to Make Your First $1000 Within 30 Days of Buying a Website
Obviously, you’re compelled toward the second headline because it is telling you exactly how much money you can make and within a specific timeframe. Your headline has to communicate to the reader that they’re being given something very specific, rather than generic information. This entices them to continue reading beyond the headline and preview sentences. If the reader knows there is value being given that can lead to immediate results, they will want to read on to learn how to implement the steps outlined in your content.
3. Educate the Reader About Your Journey Towards Success
People love success stories because they’re motivated to achieve their own success. But are you writing more about others’ success or your own?
Anybody can write about success that someone else has achieved. You have to write about your own success to show readers that you actually have produced results with the tips you are providing. This verifies your experience and your ability to guide others towards success.
Even if you aren’t the multi-millionaire internet entrepreneur just yet, it doesn’t mean you can’t write about your moderate gains. Showing your success as you are starting off will provide you with more validation than it would if you came out of nowhere writing about how you’re a seven-figure earning internet marketer.
Give your readers the honest truth, and they’ll be more willing to trust your content due to your honesty.
Bloggers may sometimes write about their journey towards success and place it on their sidebar as an archived blog to read. Most bloggers will write about their journey in the “about” section of their blog.
Entrepreneur on Fire is a podcast that makes over six figures a month. On their About page, they explain how Entrepreneur on Fire was developed, from the very beginning to where they are now. You should show the same process as your business grows over time.
4. Communicate Your Failures
Speaking of honesty, no one has a 100% success rate as an entrepreneur. There are times when your business ideas failed miserably. Instead of trying to hide these failures, write about them.
This is in no way celebrating failure. It’s more about providing your readers with your experiences that can be used as cautionary advice. Your readers will thank you tremendously for this type of content.
Writing about your failures shows that you have been through the ups and downs of entrepreneurship. You have the experience to understand what works and what doesn’t work.
Someone reading your content could be dealing with a failing business themselves, and your content could be the advice that shows them how to pivot or completely start over with a better plan of action.
Therefore, don’t discount the value of failure. Going through it and succeeding despite it can help in making you relatable to your readers.
5. Create a Conversation
Content that is written like a school lesson is extremely boring to read. Unless you are writing for scientists or technical workers, your content needs to be engaging and provide education.
Use words such as you when you are writing. This helps to include the reader by making it seem like your content is speaking directly to them. Now they’re following more closely as you’re guiding them through the process of whatever you’re writing about.
You also don’t want to write in a formal manner. Write as if you’re speaking to a friend, so your content is more personable. This doesn’t mean to disregard speaking proper English, but you do want to come across as a professional who knows how to educate without being too serious. Make the conversation enjoyable.
You also must make it clear to the reader you want to help them succeed. Let them know you both are in this together. Their success means your success because it validates your methods as being authentic.
For example: We understand you have been having difficulties making money blogging. We have also dealt with the same problems when we first started blogging, so we understand your frustration. We are going to show you how to implement the steps that will help you to start making extra income from your blog within 21 days.
6. Tell a Story
Your readers want to read the type of content that gets them excited and motivated. As a kid, did reading stories about super heroes what to make you become one? Yes, they did, and this doesn’t change as an adult.
Writing a story helps to open the mind of your reader. They’re imagining themselves being the subject of your story. They want to experience the success you’re writing about in such great detail that it feels like they in turn have succeeded.
A good way to do this is through case studies. In fact, writing case studies is a form of storytelling. You are communicating how a business came to you in an existing condition and how you helped to improve the performance of their business.
Not only is your story entertaining, but also it is perfectly communicating your expertise and knowledge. You are providing the full details of how you help businesses and individuals move to another level of performance.
7. Put Your Readers to Work
Your content isn’t valuable if it doesn’t push your readers to start making their own improvements. When your readers can say that your content actually helped them improve their performance, then they’ll be more willing to purchase your products or services.
Tell your readers to implement the tips you provided to them and to report their results back to you. Give them homework so that they have a reason to stay consistently engaged with your content.
You will find that your audience will be more engaged when you include them within your content. They’ll leave more comments under your post and will send you emails about how your content has made them become more accountable for their actions.
Having a large readership is good, but having readers who are active and become successful due to your content is more rewarding. You are forcing your readers to be accountable for their own mediocrity or success. If they choose to follow your writing, knowing you provide people with actions to create their own success but they’re choosing to not actively participate to improve themselves, then they will have no one to blame but themselves.
8. Provide Solutions to Problems
Just writing about the problems people are dealing with doesn’t help them. They already know what their problems are, so they need to learn how to correct them.
Communicate to the reader why their problem exists, and then guide them towards how a solution is produced. This isn’t just a simple answer that glosses over the solution. You want to explain the solution in detail so that they can understand the process step by step.
Writing content that provides solutions elevates your status as a writer of authority. You aren’t just a writer; you are someone who has major influence within your particular industry. Your products should also actively help readers solve these problems. Remember, your goal is to show why your products or services will provide immense value, so you must produce the content that motivates people to inquire about how they can partake in your offer.
Everyone wants to get paid for their value, but it is important to communicate that providing solutions is your primary focus. When the reader sees you are focused on working to improve their life, they will be willing to become your customer.
9. Add Visual Support
Even though great writing is powerful, it doesn’t hurt to enhance your content with visual support. Adding images, video, and audio helps to keep your readers engaged with your content.
Infographics are a great type of image to include within your content. They help you communicate your content through both words and images. This information usually includes statistics that wouldn’t be as fun to read if written through plain text.
Audio works great because not everyone enjoys reading. If you make a podcast around your written content, then you can give it the ability to gain more exposure, especially since people love to listen to audio content in their cars.
Videos are extremely useful, especially when you consider that YouTube is the second most visited site in the world. Take advantage of people’s obsession with videos and include them. These videos can be as simple as following you along a typical workday or covering an event around your new product release.
10. Don’t Be Too Smart
Writing big words and complex sentences to try and appear smart will not help your case. Remember that we said you want to make your content easy to read and follow.
When you can actually break a complex topic down into simple words, it shows you have a full grasp of your craft.
You are probably familiar with K.I.S.S. This stands for “Keep It Simple, Stupid,” and it is very effective in giving your content impact.
Write short and concise sentences. Write with the intent of wanting an eighth grader to understand you. Anything beyond that and you will tend to lose most readers.
11. Study the Experts
You should already be following the writing of those who have authority within your industry. You want to know what they’re writing about and how they’re writing their content.
The experts are basically providing you a free guideline of what your target market wants. All you have to do is take this content and write about it from your point of view. By taking up their ideas from your position in the industry, you’ll reframe their knowledge in your own, unique voice.
Never copy anyone else’s voice. You want to be 100% authentic as a writer.
As your content grows in popularity, the experts you follow will soon come to recognize you as an authority. When this occurs, you will find that your content is being shared on popular blogs and websites. Now you’re in the big leagues and experiencing more demand than you can handle.
Bonus: Never Forget to Edit
You can never create content of great quality without doing the proper edits after your first draft is completed. Yes, first draft. When you complete the writing of your content for the first time, it definitely isn’t ready to be published. A revision process must happen.
When you’re in the process of writing, you are trying to flesh all of your thoughts out onto your computer screen. Many times, this flow of thought isn’t well defined. Therefore, it is important for you to go back over your work with not only your eyes but also the eyes of another person.
Editors are an important part of the writing process. They help you catch mistakes you overlook as you are moving forward to finish your writing. If you aren’t able to pay an editor to revise your content, you can check out some resources that teach you how to edit your content yourself.
Take Your Content to Another Level
Don’t just read this content and immediately forget to implement the tips provided. You don’t have time to waste when it comes to your content. You have products and services to sell, and your content plays a major role in that effort.
As your content improves, you put your business in the position to profit greatly. You understand that your content is an investment, so make sure every piece of content you write works to bring a return on your investment.
Isn’t it time for your content to establish you as a leading authority in your industry?
Photo Credit: Luis Llerena