Creating Content That Matters
I don't know about you, but sometimes I feel like I'm just floating in a sea of information overload.
Link after link saved to my iPhone promising that THIS is the thing you MUST do to succeed with your content creation, your branding, your small business strategy, your 'insert whatever here'.
But the truth is, I find the most inspirational and helpful resources to be the ones that keep it simple. I love to learn, and simultaneously not feel like I need a Master's degree in acronyms to decipher a free download.
So in light of these experiences, paired with my nearly twenty years in marketing, I've discovered that dedicating my content shares to foundational information is the way to go. It's a perfect fit for my marketer's heart and soul. I love that I'm creating a warm, welcoming home for small business owners to return to when they feel overwhelmed by the concept of marketing their services.
And the truth is, as much as I can offer my services within limited budgets, many small business owners are struggling, especially in the face of what is coming. It seems that now is the time to make myself, my knowledge, and my approach more accessible to the thousands upon thousands of small biz owners that will need to find a way forward without the overwhelm.
Let's prepare to face this "new normal" ahead, together. Below are foundational tips, tools and resources for creating the core of your content and things to keep in mind moving forward.
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Know Your Audience
Write your content in a way that will draw your reader in. Target the structure of sentences and the messaging in a way that it will appeal to your audience (a.k.a. target market).
How to Target Content
Reflect on who your target market is. What information are they seeking? What FAQs (frequently asked questions) would provide them with a greater understanding of the services you provide? What free insight can you offer so that they view you as a trusted, valuable resource?
Use Keywords Seamlessly (The Dreaded SEO!)
When writing online content, it is important to include keywords for search engine optimization (SEO) so people can find you when they search for related content. Once you have formed your list of keywords and phrases, be sure to craft your content as if keywords don’t exist. Include them in a way that they flow naturally throughout your content.
I'm far from the expert on SEO but I've learned enough to be dangerous. Some resources for keyword searches include www.keywordtool.io and if you are looking to see what others are searching for on a topic you are writing about I love using answerthepublic.com. Both are free (& valuable) resources but have limits on usage and extended capability unless you upgrade. I also adore Meg Casebolt of loveatfirstsearch.com. She makes things super easy to understand and provides many free resources to her followers.
Keep It Professional
Great content isn't just about what you say, or how you say it, but also how professionally it is presented. It is critical that all content, whether online or in print, is always proofread before hitting the send or publish button. Poor grammar and misspelled words can instantly discredit your content's value.
Pro Tool Tip:
Although nothing can take the place of a professional copyeditor/proofreader, Grammarly.com has an amazing free service that allows you to copy and paste your content into their screen and evaluate it. It offers corrections for spelling and basic grammar that you may accept or decline. The advanced version is paid, but the free version is still a great tool for those that tend to feel lost when proofing their own work.
Other Quick Bits
Brand: Make sure your content is on brand with your business and utilizes your brand voice.
Sensitivity: Acknowledge the current climate of the times and be sensitive to it (i.e. the state of things due to the pandemic).
Engage: Look for opportunities to connect and engage with your readers. Don't be afraid to speak from the heart or provide transparency on the values/mission of your business..
Updates: Periodically review existing web content, older blog posts, newsletter content, etc and consider how content can be refreshed, reworked and/or reshared.