Content marketing is the top digital priority for B2B marketers. (see chart). Companies are using blogs, newsletter, videos and social media to tell their story. But who are you telling your story to? When tasked to come up with content, too many creators are writing to impress their boss but not readers.
Here are some tips to help avoid boss centric content.
Even if you are creating an industry specific piece, write it so that the man on the street would understand your ideas and what the benefits of implementing them have been. Think about questions that a casual reader would ask that also have value for the more sophisticated user. Start with the question, in layman’s terms and provide the answer. For the expert, your question will pique their interest not only for content, but a curiosity as to how you may have answered it. For example, a real estate developer was focusing on architects. Part of the content creation went into explaining the value by noting the tons of concrete and miles of wire that have been deployed. Impressive, but more compelling to both the audiences would be dollars spent and jobs created. A veterinary research organization is discussing drug research to help people with their dog allergies. But rather than referring to allergies, they discussed the impact of the hypersensitive response of the immune system.
Look at how you are using quotes and titles. Organizations tend to give leaders great titles. Often you will see these type of references in press releases. Robert Alexander Smith is the John George Jones professor of Chemistry, professor of medicine, professor of materials science and engineering, professor of biomedical engineering, and professor of chemical and biological engineering and director of Global Institute for Materials and other Cool Stuff at Global National University. (this is an actual paraphrase of a real person) But who wants to read all of this? For the quote, just note him as Bob Smith of Global National University with a link. If your reader wants to learn more, it’s just a click away. Speaking of quotes, try to distill down the typical press release quote down to less than 15 words. Many press release quotes contain a two sided quote. First they put it into context, then provide the citation, then expand with more detail. On the internet, keep it short. Then you can provide a: Need to learn more link to the entire press release.
Lastly, use real pictures not head shots. The internet loves pictures. But readers like pictures of the experts in action. Authenticity gets a lot more traction than perfection. However, be careful about picture quality. In my work, I normally crop a picture and run it through a Photoshop program, just to insure picture quality.
Which one of these pictures is more engaging?
After you create your content, ask someone who is not connected to comment. Keep an open mind to their comments. Often as authors, we get defensive, but a great reviewer or editor has tremendous value. They don’t necessarily have to be impressed, but they do need to understand it.