Do You Know These 5 Secrets to Compelling Content?

5 Easy Pieces of Content Creation Advice

When it comes to creating content or blog posts what matters isn’t how often you post but rather the quality of your content. Face it, readers want your content to be a filling steak dinner not a few rice crackers full of air and low on content.

By creating compelling content on a consistent basis you establish your authority and thought leadership. These qualities are invaluable because they help you leverage business opportunities.

How do you keep creating quality content or blog posts on a regular basis? Here are five secrets to help you develop useful and entertaining content.

  1. Collect content ideas. While people collect everything from stamps to back issues of National Geographic, to be an effective writer or blogger you must always be gathering new ideas. To this end, capture ideas for articles, headlines and graphics whenever and wherever you’re inspired. Jot them down before they vanish into thin air. You can use an old-fashioned pencil and notebook or modern electronic device. It’s important to build the habit of securing the inspiration for future use.  CONTENT CREATION TIP: Organize your notes so that you’ve got most of your article already started when you’re ready to write. Contrary to what you may believe, once you build this writing habit, it’ll be second nature and will yield a stockpile of partially written articles.
  2. Have an editorial calendar. By planning out your writing schedule for the near future, you’re subconsciously preprogramming your mind to look for specific types of information. CONTENT CREATION TIP:  Streamline your editorial process by having a regular publishing schedule of topics. This eliminates having to brainstorm a month in advance to ensure you have on-going content. Use a set of two week rotating topics. Don’t forget to leave room for breaking news.
  3. Tell a story with a beginning, middle and end. Having been told stories since we were young, we’ve been programmed to remember them. Stories provide an emotional component and a human voice. Stripped down to its core, stories help your audience follow and remember what you’ve told them. CONTENT CREATION TIP: Where possible, make your stories positive. Research by Jonah Berger and Katherine L. Milkman using New York Times articles found that, the more emotion articles contained, the more likely they were to be shared but positive stories trumped negatives ones.
  4. Understand why readers find your content useful. Remember content creation isn’t about you—it’s about your readers. If they don’t find your writing helpful or entertaining, they’re on to the next piece. In today’s message laden environment where everyone always has a connected device nearby, getting your reader’s attention is the toughest battle your content has. CONTENT CREATION TIP: Create a set of marketing personas to give you a visceral sense of your readers. Don’t forget to give them a name to help you feel connected.
  5. Make your readers think. You don’t need to supply all the facts on a specific topic. Rather you must make a case and engage your prospects. Pretend you’re talking to your readers and need to grab them by the collar to make them listen. CONTENT CREATION TIP: Not sure of your readers’ hot buttons? Ask them for feedback or reach out to people who comment on your blog. At a minimum, add a question at the end of every article to get the discussion going. Of course, if you do this, respond to readers’ comments.

Strong compelling content is an important element of any blog or marketing program. To facilitate the process, develop habits to help you keep creating content readers want and need.

Do you have any other suggestions to help readers create compelling content? If so, please add you input in the comments section below.

Happy marketing,
Heidi Cohen


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  • http://www.thebryanproject.com Bryan Weller

    The worst thing for me is remembering to write down all my ideas as they strike me. Something gets into my head for awhile, I mull it over and somehow forget to write it down for later. Then I completely forget what I was going to write about! Arrgh.

    • http://riversidemarketingstrategies.com/ Heidi Cohen

      Bryan– Don’t worry you’re in good company. Many people can think through an entire post in their head. Once it’s done, their mind feels that it’s done the tough work. I recommend writing down thoughts during the day with the goal being to see how many days you write something. The added benefit is that it can help you with other aspects of your life. Happy marketing, Heidi Cohen

  • http://www.needagoodwriter.com Tracey Franks

    Love the idea about the marketing personas! I am always telling my clients they need to put themselves in the reader’s shoes and have an understanding of what information to put forth.

    Thanks for producing useful content that I can share Heidi!

    Tracey

    • http://riversidemarketingstrategies.com/ Heidi Cohen

      Tracey–It’s about thinking like your target market. The hardest is when you are the target market because you’ve only got one point of view! Happy marketing, Heidi Cohen

  • http://www.letskis.com/ Scott Herder

    Great post I think implementing a calendar is a great idea for writing, and of course notes.

  • http://www.wadeharman.com/ Wade Harman

    I think a lot of people can’t grasp the concept behind “telling a story” while providing information to their readers. To be honest, it’s not a hard one to get once you learn the correct way to do it, but you’ve got to keep them engaged in your content that way or people just lose interest.

    Great article Heidi.