Here are five tips to help you stay on target and turn out great content marketing for your audience.
1. Answer the Questions Your Audience Is Already Asking
One of the counterintuitive things about creating marketing content is that coming up with new, creative things to do can be a mistake, especially early on in your content marketing strategy. You don’t need a stroke of genius to create great content. In fact, a lot of the best content doesn’t try to be unique, it just answers the obvious questions that are already on your customers’ and prospects’ minds.
What these questions are specifically depends on your business and its target market. But if you know your customers pretty well, or if you’ve built good personas, they’re not too hard to figure out. Business buyers have common problems in the industry they’re trying to solve. Consumers have common interests that drive them to your industry.
Get the people in your company who know your customers best together and have a brainstorming session:
- What questions are on that audience’s mind?
- What do they search for online?
- What do they like on social media?
- What knowledge sets the noobs apart form the vets?
Then write about that. Outline a series of content pieces that answers those questions. That’s the content that will come up as results for those searches, get shared on social media, and helps the noobs stop embarrassing themselves.
2. Use the Specific Language They Use
This one can also be counter intuitive. After all, shouldn’t you show off how much you know with a lot of new buzzwords, jargon and 50-cent synonyms?
No. You should not.
In fact, the further you take your language away from the words and phrases your customers use, the more aloof you get, and the less accessible your content becomes.
Figure out the words your target audience uses when they talk about your industry, and use them. Use them exclusively. Use them from your headline, through your deck, lede paragraph, subheads and all the way through your conclusion.
Don’t use those terms in an unnatural way — unnatural repetition is bad for your readers and for SEO — but don’t try to swap them out for synonyms or euphemisms either. If those are the words your business is about, that’s what your content should be about too.
This has an added benefit in SEO, because it sends a clear message to the search engines that your content is about the keywords your audience searches for. That’s how writing for real people leads you to writing for SEO, too.
3. Give Them Something They Can Use Immediately
Content marketing is a trade. You’re asking the audience to give your brand attention in exchange for your content.