It’s no secret that there is plenty of web content available today. I was recently thinking about why some content works and why some doesn’t. What truly separates good content from great content?
Like any skill, sometimes in order to improve we must recognize what can go wrong.
There are many groups of people who could make it on this list – for example, the digital marketer who does not optimize content for digital platforms or the analytics guru who does not measure the right analytics.[jetpack_subscription_form title="Subscribe to Out of Office:" subscribe_button="Sign Me Up"]
However, I have decided to focus on four common groups that many content marketers fall under.
- Content that’s too complex
If you can write a great 400 page dissertation on… well, on anything, good for you. I’m impressed. However, this is not a skill you should employ when you are creating web content.
Content marketing is a different beast from essay writing. For starters, the form is much different. Here are a few helpful tips:
- Avoid long paragraphs.
- Use lots of headings and subheadings.
- Break up paragraphs with bullets and lists.
- Make it really easy to scan.
- Write less formally (unless your target audience requires formal writing, more on that later.)
Remember, you’re not writing for a prestigious scientific journal. It’s your blog, not rocket science.
- Content that’s not targeted
Let’s say you do everything right. You create this incredible piece of content that could easily be on BuzzFeed, Mashable, or any of the hip websites that focus on a younger generation and get hundreds of thousands of visits a day. This could go viral. It’s just that good.
All of those shares, however, won’t do you any good if your business is targeting older business owners and decision makers.
Your content should not be written purely to “go viral.” It needs to be written to “go big among your target audience.” Otherwise, how does it help you? Think about your marketing goals when you write, and your great content will work to help you achieve them.
- Content without variety
You can’t just throw up walls of text or it’s going to do exactly what walls do – keep people out. Break up your writing with other types of content. There are many other elements you can employ to attract readers.
Content with relevant and engaging multimedia attachments tend to get better engagement and more social shares.
- Poorly edited content
Nobody is perfect. So if you make a gramatical mistake, typo, or spelling error every once in a while, it is understandable. However, if these typos and mistakes become frequent, people are not going to want to read what you are saying and they’ll stop trusting you. It doesn’t matter if you know more about the topic you are discussing than anyone else, poor editing can hurt your credibility.
Always remember to double and triple-check your spelling and grammar.
Take time with your content. With a little extra time and avoiding these four pitfalls, you can get the most out of your content and your audience will get the most out of your expertise.