Content marketing continues to be the workhorse of B2B marketing — today 93% of B2B marketers use content marketing. Understandably so, since content marketing feeds the continuous need for information from the consumer. But not all content is created equal. So, if you are wondering how to create great content, read on.
Why is it that some content goes viral?
And other content maxes out at 100 hits?
What’s more, the content that does take off doesn’t seem to be much better than the content that can barely get any traction — at face value anyway.
How to Create Great Content in 6 Steps
The truth is there are several tricks to the content marketing trade. This post will explain how to create great content your audience will care about in six steps.
Step 1: Make Your Content Relevant
First and foremost, you need to know your audience. What keeps them up at night? What makes them tick? What are they afraid of? The more you can develop your target buyer personas the better you can cater your content to their needs.
Based on your target audience, use implicit information at your disposal to research what kind of questions people are looking for answers to:
- What they are searching: Google AdWords, keyword search tools (e.g. Wordstream)
- What they are sharing: social media monitoring, topic search tools (e.g. Buzzsumo)
- What people are asking: Quora, Yahoo Answers, and other industry forums.
Is there a top keyword with a high search volume in your niche market? Once you’ve developed a solid understanding of who your audience is and what they are looking for, you can create content that will appeal to them.
Make your content interesting and valuable — teach your audience something that will make their lives easier and applies to their problems and challenges. The more targeted your content, the better.
Step 2: Make Your Content Easy to Digest
The best content is thorough but succinct. That means every important detail is addressed but not exhausted. Today’s marketing best practices suggest content writers strive to write content that is upwards of 2000 words — but to break up the content to prevent boring your readers. This can be achieved with:
Headings make your content easy to browse (and improve your SEO), while visual elements enhance your content and break up your long-form text.
Step 3: Don’t Make It About Selling Your Services
Time and time again we have mentioned the importance of educating your audience. It’s not about you; it is about them! Capturing attention in today’s distracted world is tough work for a marketer — if you can’t quickly cater to your audience’s needs by appealing to their interests, you’ll lose them in a heartbeat. Focusing your content on your own products and services is a surefire way to bore your audience. Save selling for another medium, not your educational content.
Step 4: Spice It Up!
Repetition of messages in your content can help your audience retain information, which is what you want as a marketer. However, if you repeat a message and it leads to tedium, you will reach a point of annoyance. And when that point of tedium is hit, your brand becomes associated with negative emotions, which catapults your business into an unfavorable position in the minds of your buyers. To prevent reaching a point of tedium, you need to keep your content fresh and interesting.
Find a unique angle and don’t be afraid to take the road least traveled when creating content. Of course, you need to keep in mind the previous steps — ensuring your content is relevant and valuable to your target audience.
It’s not an easy task to keep your finger on the pulse of your audience’s interests, but it’s well worth it when you can draw your audience in and keep them coming back for more. Think about using different mediums, leveraging leading-edge industry research and even conducting your own research reports on issues critical to your audience.
Step 5: Know How Your Audience Consumes Content
Know where your target market will consume content, and leverage the benefits of that medium. Will it be consumed on mobile? On desktop?
[Side note: Google has just announced that its search results index will prioritize mobile content first, due to the fact that mobile search queries have surpassed desktop.]
It is important to understand how the medium you use can complement your content and how your content can best fit into each medium.
When thinking about how to create great content, think about using:
Ask yourself which will best appeal to your target audience? You need to make it drop dead easy for your readers to consume your content.
Step 6: Promote Your Content
Last but certainly not least, you need to get your content in front of the right people. If your audience can’t find your content, they can’t care about it! To ensure your content gets the exposure it deserves, you need to work it. That means leveraging email, social media, and influencers.
Master the art of the perfect email subject line, be crafty as a fox when you write your CTAs, and hone in on your social success. If it is content you’re really proud of, think about using paid advertisements to extend its reach. The bottom-line, creating great content isn’t enough — you need to put the leg work in to promote it.
Learn More About How to Create Great Content
At Total Product Marketing, we specialize in digital, strategic and inbound marketing for Cloud, Hosting, and Channel companies. Our Cloud Marketing Blog is always filled with great tips and insights on how to create great content.
Need help converting more leads into opportunities? Learn about TPM’s Cloud Sales Accelerator, a turnkey content marketing automation solution for MSPs that will position your business as a Cloud Authority.
Or join us on February 1st, where we’ll discuss “The 4 Secrets of Successful MSPs and Sales Partners” — learn more about how to turn your stagnant leads into opportunities!