Have you ever read through an article only to walk away asking yourself what the real point was? If this sounds familiar then you’re not alone. I recently read what I thought was going to be a compelling article judging by its witty title, however, when I finally got to the end I thought to myself, ‘Wow I didn’t learn a thing I didn’t already know.’
In content marketing, you hear the word storytelling a lot. While every story needs a beginning, middle and end, it also needs a point. As a business, your goal is to persuade a customer to take action, whether it’s downloading your latest whitepaper or ebook or leaving a comment on your latest blog post.
Odds are if a customer comes to your site, he or she has already studied up on what your company does. So instead of boring prospects with what your product is, explain how it can address their specific pain points. It’s important to remember that the content you produce not only needs substance, but it also needs to teach your readers something new. For example, if you’re writing a post about a new industry study, don’t just reiterate the statistics. Instead, tell your readers how the results from the study will affect them and why.
As content marketers, it’s easy to get lost in our words. Oftentimes, we focus so much on the “what” that we fail to address the “why.” However, the most compelling content will show customers why what your writing is so important to their business and needs. Interviews, Q&As, how-to’s, infographics, whitepapers are all types of articles that demonstrate your commitment to quality, original content.
So how do you ensure that your content is making a point? Before you sit down to create a piece, think about your target audience. For example, a high-level executive or CEO has different concerns, motivations and expertise than a customer service representative, meaning your content needs to reflect the interests of your intended audience.
The next step is determining two or three key points that you want to drive home. These key points will serve as your roadmap throughout the writing process. The final, and oftentimes most overlooked, step is re-reading your content back or asking someone else to review it to ensure that it makes the point you wanted.
Don’t think of yourself as a content marketer, rather as a teacher who always needs to leave your readers educated.