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5 Practical Steps to Write Powerful and Engaging Content

by Mihaela Bulacu on January 3, 2020

7 minute read

Marketing teams frequently encounter problems in creating engaging and consistent content that makes readers hit that Share button. While many think this is caused by a lack of writing skills or ideas, the lack of a sturdy action plan is the root of the problem.

Before starting to work on your content, think of your company’s current content marketing strategy, if it is inspired by your audience, backed by customer insights, etc., or if you are just throwing different types of content in their face and hope for the best. Something has to ultimately work, right?

Angry person.

Wrong. Your audience is far more complex than this. When crafting a marketing plan, you have to account for different variables. Think about where your audience is gathering information when researching solutions to their problems, what type of language they use, what social media channels are they the most frequently engaged with, and much more than this.

Fast Facts that Will Prove the Power of Content Marketing

According to Pew Research Center, 28% of US adults say they are almost always online. Some of them might be part of your audience. Besides, more than 80% of adult Americans go online daily. The good news is, all that well-written content on your blog section has higher chances to be read by them. This study has also found blog posts to be the most shared type of online content, so we shall focus on that exclusively. 

Below we have a small 5-step guide on crushing your content and putting together compelling and engaging pieces for your audience.

1. Find a Topic That Appeals to Your Audience

The key here is to create content that answers your audience’s questions in the most relevant and informational possible way. Bringing industry experts to contribute to your content helps you add credibility to your pieces. You can interview industry thought leaders or invite them to write guest blog posts on your website’s blog section.

Storytelling

Alternatively, you can start with a core topic and find relevant connections to explore. Use customer insights and customer research to map out topics from your main question and develop a more effective and engaging content plan. For example, don’t just ask your audience if they need a customer relationship management system. Instead, start with connected questions: 

  • When is the perfect time to invest in a CRM tool? 
  • How to make the most of your Business Intelligence System? 
  • X Ways to Make the Most of Your Marketing Automation Tools. 

2. Pack Your Content With Facts and Data

There is magic in numbers. And although bringing industry leaders on your content section will add to your credibility, facts and data will have the same effect. Readers judge you based on how accurate the information you provide is.

Facts and data.

When writing content where these are tricky to integrate, use other visuals to prove a point. For example, if you write a piece where you try to educate your audience on how to use a software product, it’s best to include screenshots and step-by-step tutorials in your copy. This strategy has a double purpose: to educate your audience and to prove a point - to offer readers a glimpse into your products. This type of content increases your readers’ chances to convert. 

TIP: Periodically, update your statistics and data and reshare older content. This is a great way to make your data-packed content evergreen and keep it relevant. 

3. Headlines Shift Attitudes

Regardless of how well-written, informative, and researched your content is, if you don’t have a compelling headline for it,  it will most likely go unnoticed. From this regard, the headline of your article is more important than the copy itself. While there are many best practices and tips that can help you improve your headlines, I narrowed down the list to the following. 

  • Lists and numbers. Just look at my headline. Right from the start, you are aware of how many steps or tips I’ll be offering you. It gives you a sense of structure. And the human mind surely appreciates structure.
  • Pair your numbers and lists with catchy phrases. Connect numbers with a clear idea of what your readers can expect from your content, such as Steps, Reasons, Ways, Statistics, Tips, etc.
  • Choose a headline that offers clues. For example: bad headline: “Sugar Connect” vs. good headline: “4 Reasons We Love Sugar Connect”. The difference is tremendous, although the content itself will most likely be the same in both articles.
  • Make visitors excited to read your article. Try using powerful words and phrases to add to your audience’s excitement. Maintain a positive and engaging tone throughout your content because discrepancies between your headline and piece will make readers disengaged.

4. Pick Your Communication Channels Wisely

If you want to ensure your content reaches your audience in the most efficient way, you have to carefully pick your communication channels. Factor in two variables: your audience’s go-to channels and your expected results. Think about where your audience is more likely to engage with your company. Is it your blog section? Facebook? LinkedIn? Email? YouTube? Are they more likely to go for white papers and ebooks?

Getting the word out.

The expected return should also play a crucial role here. For example, if you want to create buzz around a new product or service, social media works best. To educate your audience on how to use your products/services, your blog section works like a charm. But if you want to offer existing customers exclusive news, offers, and deals, an email will do the job.

5. Be Persistent With Content Promotion

Marketers shouldn’t be afraid of repetition. Psychology tells us that people need to be exposed to a message somewhere between 10 and 20 times to respond positively to it. While marketers are afraid of boring their audience to death by repeating the same message over and over again, it has been proven that redundancy works like a charm in being persuasive.

So, go ahead and promote your content on all outlets you have at hand: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest if that works for your business, and so forth. Use marketing automation tools to schedule your posts. This will add an extra dose of structure and strategy to your content marketing campaigns.

Key Takeaways

Create content that helps you connect with your audience. Take care of their deepest needs, most burning questions, their existential dilemmas, if you wish. You will notice a more loyal audience; an audience that can relate to your brand with more ease. Offer them factual information, tips they can work with, and apply in their real-life situations. Be genuine, and don’t sugar coat it. This will make them fall in love with your content and, well, your company. 

Give the team at W-Systems a call, we have more insights on creating powerful marketing content to share with you!

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