9+ ways to create content that converts
Updated Sept 2018
It's everywhere. We love it and we hate it. But we can't get rid of it. Content. Why? Because it works. The right custom content can generate leads. It can turn leads into sales. Strategic content creation can keep that customer coming back and bringing all of her friends. Or that content can just sit out in the endless expanse of the internet universe, dying a slow agonizing death.
You want the first kind of content. But do you know where this magical content comes from? Is it a mysterious cave? Your uncle's attic? Some far away island in the South Pacific? No. It comes from you and that creative mind of yours. You just have to unlock it to develop content that converts to sales.
First a few interesting stats.
90% of customers find custom content to be useful.
The # 1 reason that customers follow a brand is because of their custom content.
78% of customers say they feel "closer" to brands that produce interesting custom content.
Effective content marketing works. But what is effective?
10. Understand where creative ideas come from
Creativity is building things that never existed before. It is making new connections. It adds value to a customer's life that they are not getting anywhere else. Here is a great article on places to find Epic Content Ideas.
9. Stop Reading. And Start Writing.
Okay. You love content as much as anyone. So I'm not really telling you to stop reading or viewing what's out there. But if you find yourself endlessly surfing through the sea of what's already out there to find your inspiration, you're just going to sound like more of the same. Listen to your inner voice instead. Picture your target customer. What does that customer want to know about? How do they want to receive that information? This is your inspiration. Just start writing with the customer in focus and the rest will happen naturally.
8. Don't Regurgitate
It's gross. No one wants to see what you had for lunch. And no, they don't want to see what you just read, re-written in a slightly different format to pass Copyscape. Not only is it "plagiarism" and therefore unethical. But Search engines are getting smarter when it comes to recognizing "spun content" , And you don't want to make the Google gods angry. You kind of need them to share your content with the world through their search engines.
Where's the market differentiation? Someone's already done it. If you can't find a totally new way to "spin" a piece and add value that isn't there, then don't do it. If you like the piece, vote with your fingers and share it with your audience. This actually gives you a bit of credibility with your audience because you're showing appreciation for someone else and not just "me, me, me". You are betraying your audience's trust when you try to pass it off as your own.
7. Avoid Tangents
Feel the flow of your writing. Understand the message you are trying to send. The "delete button" is a writer's best friend. You wouldn't want to say everything you think. So don't feel that you can't delete something that goes off in the wrong direction. Align your words with your purpose. Don't be concerned if it drops your word count. Because ineffective words that feel out of place can kill your momentum and do great harm.
Read your piece out loud. Make note of how naturally you are able to move from sentence to sentence and idea to idea. And then cut the junk that doesn't add value and convey the right message. The same applies to whatever content you are creating, images, videos, charts.
6. Know your target
Content marketing is still marketing. And this is Marketing 101. Creating a bunch of content that no one cares about is a black hole you do not want to travel down. Waste of time, money and energy.
Who is your target customer?
What would brighten their days?
Get them excited?
Urge them to buy?
Foster brand loyalty?
It never hurts to ask actual customers. They are a greatest resource. Encourage customers to share what they would like to see and what would make their content consuming experience more worth while.
To write content you need the know to mechanics of the language in which you are writing inside and out. You need to know many, many ways to say the same thing in terms of vocabulary, sentence structure, syntax, metaphor, etc, etc, etc.. To produce videos, you vary your shots, cut the reel, align your background music and dialogue.
Saying or showing things in the same way over and over gets boring fast. There is something to be said for consistency, branding and style guides.. But don't let it hijack your piece and send your passengers reaching for their parachutes. Like all art forms, you should be able to feel your content. Know your art. But know your science as well. One without the other will truly be an uninspired piece of work.
Not only does this improve your SEO, but it says to your customer:
I really put some thought into this.
I wouldn't share it with you unless I really thought it was right.
I value your time and your business enough to only give you my best.
And I want to give you access to additional resources if you want to know more.
Today's educated consumer is skeptical. They want to know that they aren't being sold a bunch of fluff. Even if you are absolutely sure that you know what you are talking about, show customers you care by backing yourself up and giving them more should they want to explore. Your due diligence will be rewarded.
Yes, Google does consider longer content to be higher quality . But don't completely abandon shorter content. There is still value to the quick read/view when it comes to actually converting leads to sales. Your customer does not want to think that they are committing to viewing a 15+ min video or a book of long form content every time your content comes up in their feed. If they did, they would very quickly stop clicking on your must click headlines. Vary lengths of content. Keep them guessing. If you're going for 1000 words, make them count. If you could say it in 500, do so. Every word should add value. They'll want to read your longer content sometimes if you are giving them valuable information, but variety is the spice of life.
Of course you are ultimately doing this to gain leads and convert sales. But losing sight of the customer will make your investments all for naught. Content/Customer comes before SEO. And it definitely precedes the CTA. The #1 reason that content converts is because it seems to come from a place that value customers and works to give them what they want.
1. Get the right return on investment
When you invest in a marketing strategy, you expect a return on investment. Your own success depends on your ability to consistently and effectively release custom content. With the rise of content marketing, many business are trying their hand and becoming their own marketing departments and Content Marketing Professionals are finding it difficult to keep up with Content Creation demand. But, 62% of businesses have found greater success through hiring a professional who understands how to write content that converts to sales.
A top-notch content architect pays for themselves by utilizing effective strategies to drive drive and inspire action. If you are ready to sharpen your competitive edge and take your business to the next level, contact our content development team who will begin working with you to develop an effective content marketing strategy that provides you with that return on investment you need to grow and thrive in a competitive marketplace.
Team up with us and get results. Contact us today to get started with the right custom content marketing strategy for you.