Great content is like a piece of heavenly chocolate. You take a look at it and your first reflex is to take a bite. Once you taste it, it’s all you expected it to be and more. You take your time and enjoy every piece as long as you can. Once you finished it, you feel complete and want more of it. You’ll even introduce it to your friends and recommend it to your colleagues.
But what makes great content so great? And which ingredients do you need for that perfect piece of chocolate?
If you’re open to it you’ll find the right content at the right time. At least, it seems like it was a personal discovery of the right content at the right time. Because when it comes to online content we all know there is no such thing as a coincidence.
Here are 2 scenarios:
- You want to receive personalized content based on your interests so you sign in to an online newsletter of your favourite shop = you are consciously looking for content.
- You are presented with content while scrolling to your social feed. It looks like the right message at the right time. But in reality different algorithms make sure that the right content reaches you at the moment you are looking for inspiration = you are targeted.
Now they have your attention it’s all about the next steps. Many content marketeers or brands are happy with results based on range, views, impressions… But a passionate content marketeer wants to take the next step. That’s when good becomes great.
Great content becomes great when:
1. There is a clear value proposition. A good introduction is key, you need to promise your reader/viewer they are going to find what they are looking for: solutions, inspiration …
2. It is relevant, right here, right now, within the budget.
3. The right tone of voice is used. The content is as much in the “right” language as possible. Short to the point articles are easier to grasp, unless more explanation is needed. Testimonials are very powerful because people hear the message from their peers. When you fully read the article it is important that the content is comprehensible for your audience. You can show an expert opinion, just make sure that they don’t use terminology which your audience doesn’t understand. If you show terminology, try to explain it along the way. For each piece of content you should consider the importance of your source: is it important that we show an expert, a team member or a peer.
4. You know how to use images. Great content is the perfect balance between text and images. Images are often used to reinforce your message. You should always consider the relevance of text and images. It is possible that your image says more than words, in that case there is no need to repeat what we can already see in the image. Other than images you can also use illustrations, infographics or video.
Look at the best way to distribute your message. Always tell the essence of what needs to be told (value proposition) and be critical in how, when and where you do so.
5. It consists of different information layers. Your message, promise or call to action must be visible as from the introduction. Headlines and quotes are very important for the quick scan of the article. We call it “writing for the eye”. What do you want for the readers to instantly pick up while they quickly scan your article or watching your video.
6. All pieces fit together. All your little pieces need to fit into the bigger story. It is like reading a good book, it has a beginning, great story lines with different characters and an eye-opening plot. At the end everything comes to a point where your formats, distributed through different channels come together as one story.
7. You act from a clear point of view: your call to action. Everything starts from this question “Why are we creating this content?”. Do you want to gather data, create loyalty, increase engagement, create awareness, generate sales …? With these objectives in mind you can start and think on your strategy as you match the questions with insights on your audience and their needs.
8. You show empathy. Show interest in your audience, what do they dream about, what are their questions, which problems do they face … Try to think like them. It’s the only way you will be able to come with a solution that actually helps them. Content marketeers can be considered the social workers of marketing.
9. The empathy is mutual. You need a strong relationship with your audience, they need to love and believe you. That’s why it is important to highlight every aspect of your brand story. Take this aspects in consideration when you create content: does it makes sense that your brand tells this specific story? Does it highlight our services or enhance our activities? Every article, all your storytelling, your online content … must make sense. It is very simple, when you are telling the truth, people will believe you.
In the end everyone wants to feel like they’re eating that piece of chocolate: once they see your story, they want to take a bite and never let go. Nothing wrong with a kind case of chocolatism 😉
And that’s what makes great content great.