Content is king, the phrase which is all over the internet now is the title of an essay written by Bill Gates long back in 1996. However, it was until recently when people realized the super impact of content marketing that this phrase gained immense popularity, due to the meteoric rise of online content activities.
It needs no rocket science to answer why content is king? Simply, because it is the content that helps you first connect with the audience’s mind. It assures them that your content is the solution to their problem.
It is the content that builds trust with your audience and lets them know that you can answer their questions efficiently.
Indeed, content rules everywhere when it comes to the realm of Content Marketing, however, do you ever think where the Queen exists?
Do you ever wonder how and where the Queen comes into play, whenever you come across the phrase ‘Content is King’?
Ok, so without much ado, let us all welcome the Queen, who never leaves the King alone, and if it ever does the King may just not be able to reign supreme – it is the Engagement – yes, you read it right.
Content is certainly the King, and it is the engagement that keeps the King ruling.
It is always the engagement aspect of your content that serves the purpose of driving the desired traction.
And creating a content piece that is not engaging is like a fish out of water.
We all are aware of the fact that on digital platforms, people have shorter attention spans as compared to offline mediums.
Moreover, there is vast information flooding every moment around every single thing.
So, while creating the content, just believing that ‘Content is King’ is not enough, you need to pay equal heed to the Queen of content – which is engagement.
How to write engaging content
To write content that engages audiences, you need to know some proven techniques involved in the process.
These techniques give your content the catch it needs to drive results you desire.
Indeed, there’s no instant recipe to it, however, if you start practicing these tips in your content creation activity, you would soon make the cut.
– Smart research, best results: how does a piece of content become valuable when it educates the audience with something they did not know or maybe knew but not in deeper details. And that’s where your research plays its part.
Research should be an integral part of your blog writing process. Often, the blogs that are based on good research tend to attract more readers as compared to content pieces that lack research.
This is because everyone on the internet is looking for answers to their questions and solutions to their problems, and you can help them only by giving out well-studied information.
Also, a well-researched content gives an impression of your good hold on the topic you’re writing upon and expertise in your industry. Make sure you go through a good number of references (which could be online articles, blogs, videos, or any offline source you have access to) before finally coming over at the writing part.
So, spending hours on research will always help you create content that adds value to the reader’s mind and convert them into your prospects.
– The simpler, the better: On the digital media, you probably don’t know the language understanding of the person sitting on the other side of the screen. Therefore, it’s always advised to use simpler language in your blog or article, which is understandable even by a 10 – 12-year-old kid.
While writing a content piece, make sure that you keep your sentences crisp and to the point. When you write sentences which are too long and complex, it often confuses the reader.
The purpose of any blog or article is to make the audience stick around to the end. And for that, you need to frame your sentences in a manner that conveys the message but in simple words.
And even if you feel the need to write complex sentences in certain areas, ensure the flow is maintained and the meaning is met. Or you could break down complex concepts in simple language – which is one of the traits of well-written content.
– Let your title be the catch: there is an old wise saying, “Never judge a book by its cover”. And yet, the authors spend a lot of time and money on designing their book covers. Why? This is because, even though a book’s cover does not define its worth, it is the cover that draws the attention of a buyer in the first place.
Similarly, when you write a blog, it is the blog title which makes it stand out. The title of your blog should contain something awe-inspiring related to the topic you are writing on.
So, there are three basic parameters which you should tick off while setting out the title:
A) It should be concise yet covers the gist of your content.
B) It should arouse curiosity.
C) It should have your focus keyword intact.
D) As per buffer.comthe ideal length of a title online should be 6- 8 words. And usually, the reader absorbs the first 3-4 words, so make sure you draw the attention at the beginning of your title only.
However, the parameters do not restrict to the above-mentioned only. There are other tips like curating the title in question form, using numbers, making a promise, and the list goes on.
Remember, the title is the gateway to your blog as that’s what your audience on the internet encounters first. So, the better you construct a title, the more clicks you are likely to get.
– Power of words or power words? Well, both of them. It’s important to use vocabulary which is suitable to your audience considering the industry you are writing about.
This is particularly important for industry-specific blogs. For instance, if you are writing a blog which is about any IT related topic, you must be using words or terms which your audience group is well aware of.
Also, there are certain power words, which you can incorporate into your blog. What are power words? These are the words that evoke a strong emotion – that could be – encouragement, fear, love, hate, curiosity, or any other emotion which compels the audience to take a certain action. Examples of power words/phrases, pain-staking, life-changing, mind-blowing.
You can use power words either in your headline or anywhere you want to drive emotions. However, make sure you don’t stuff too many power words, otherwise, it would make your content look unnatural.
– Know your audience: have you ever seen a train running without a destination? Probably, not. And just like a destination is to a journey, the audience is to your content.
If you miss out on taking into account your audience’s problems and needs, you will miss reaching your destination.
Knowing your audience implies, knowing the buyer’s persona and the buyer’s journey. Where buyer’s persona represents the buyer’s interests, motivation, demographics, dislikes and such details of their nature which affect your business, whereas buyer’s journey is the process they follow while purchasing a thing.
The buyer’s journey usually consists of three stages –
Awareness stage: where the buyer becomes aware of the problem or need.
Consideration stage: where the buyer gives a definition to their problem or need and starts looking for solution-giving avenues.
Decision stage: as it says, this is the stage where the buyer zeros on the solution.
Remember, the audience’s persona and their buying tendencies vary with industry. So, all your efforts boil down to one thing that you know your audience and convert them into your customers.
– Carve a story: How do big brands make an indelible mark on their audience’s mind? It is through their story. This is because a story makes the reader feel something, and people usually don’t forget how you made them feel.
Storytelling is a powerful tool, and if you can implement it in your content – your content will speak for itself. This is especially true for brand-focused or business blogs, where you can tie your content to your brand story or case study or client story or a story campaign.
– Don’t miss out on formatting: If there are two blog pieces on the same topic, where one of them is written with proper sub-heading, quoted texts, white spaces, bold texts, and the other one is in plain writing, which one would you read first? It’s probably the former one.
This is because formatting enhances the readability scale of your writing. When you divide your writing into sub-heading, it makes it easy for the reader to catch the gist of your blog.
Similarly, you can blockquote or bold the part of the text which you would want to highlight in your blog. The use of whitespaces also add to the clean appearance of your blog.
– Support with graphics: just like the formatting plays an important role in the text, the images too add up to your content’s engaging elements. Support your content with graphical representations of your points to make it more appealing.
So, backing your content with suitable infographics or charts or short videos, makes it appear all the more rich and catchy.
Is writing the engaging content enough?
You have written the most engaging content, that has tick off all the boxes of how to write good content. But, what else does it take to drive engagement? It is the sharable attribute of your content.
For this reason, it is suggested that you look more and more ways to promote your content. And the easiest way to start the promotion of your content is utilize your nearest brand advocates. Why? Because, they become the channels through which you spread the word.
Here are different types of advocates you can find just around you to deploy for your initial content promotion :
Partners: your partners are your nearest advocates. Whether it’s your channel partner or sales partner, they would always be there to support you in growing your sales. And in order to allow this to happen, you need to provide your partners with all relevant information in the form of content which they can use to promote your business. You can also opt for social media collaboration where they can easily post your content on their social media – where their followers will get in an indirect touch with you by seeing and reading your content. It eventually increases the engagement on your content and grows your outreach.
Employees: Nielsen Global Online Consumer Survey unveils that 90% of buyers trust goods/services recommendations from the people they know. This shows that employees are another form of advocates who can prove truly effective in sharing your content. Furthermore, employees are always going to be your nearest supporters as they want your business to grow as much as you do. So, even if you ask 20-30% of your employees to share your content on their social networks, and say you have 5000 employees, you are creating 1000-1500 more chances for your content to be seen.
Influencers: influencer marketing needs no introduction as it’s already one of the huge trends in the world of content marketing. Lookout for influencers in your industry or niche and engage them in your promotional activities. Influencers are influencer for a reason and when they post your brand’s content on their social channels, it reaches directly to your target audience.
It’s just the beginning…
Remember, the answer to how to write engaging content is not limited to the points mentioned above – it goes far and beyond as and when you advance the stage of writing. And there’s a lot you can do by tapping the creativity in you. However, these were some proven techniques you can rely on, just like our Digital Marketing services which can help you take your overall online engagement a notch higher in this era of high competition. And till the time you get a hand of these methods, we shall come up with something more extensive to guide you through the right path in the pool of content marketing.