11 Ways to Offer Value and Grab The Reader’s Attention With Your Writing
If you run a business today, whether it’s a local mom-and-pop shop or a large national corporation, it’s a safe bet to assume you have become a little familiar with the basic concepts of digital marketing. At the very least, you likely understand how important it is to have the essentials: a sleek, professionally designed, and easy-to-navigate website, a presence on social media, and killer content.
A few years ago, someone coined the phrase “content is king,” and it’s still true today, whether it’s written content, video content, or a hybrid of both. You don’t want to try to execute an online marketing strategy without a content plan in place. And a huge part of great content is exceptional writing that grabs the reader’s attention and leaves a lasting impression. But how exactly do you accomplish that? We’ll discuss a few ways to do it in the post below.
This may seem like an obvious point, but it’s easy to get caught up in the fray of simply writing filler content or shallow ideas to meet a word count or desperately trying to pump out a high volume of written material. A reader knows when they’re reading something of genuine value and when they’re just looking at a fluff piece. Don’t waste the reader’s time with vague or sophomoric notions…give them the information they haven’t been able to find anywhere else. Don’t sacrifice the integrity of your piece, even if it means holding off on posting content right away. Wait until you have all the material you need to give your readers a worthwhile, engaging, and useful read.
These could be questions the readers haven’t asked you directly, but that doesn’t mean they haven’t asked them elsewhere. Do a little research and see what your readers and target audience have been asking about. What are the burning questions they’ve been yearning to have answered? Pay attention to the discussions people in your target audience are having online. Even go so far as to engage them on sites like Quora. Take that info and go to the drawing board and begin devising a plan to build your next articles around all the questions your readers are seeking to have answered.
Think a quick “sound bite” blog post is all that interests readers? Think again. Although we do live in the fast-paced information age where people have virtually all the information they need at their fingertips, a dinky 300-word blog post really isn’t the only thing people are looking for in their search. After all, how much value can be included in a summarized version of a more complex topic?
Society is quickly discovering that long-form content really is of use and interest to people. Network television is competing with online platforms where people would prefer to listen to a three-hour podcast than watch 20 minutes of news. The same can be applied to content. Don’t be afraid to get in-depth and offer meaty material. A 2,000-word article is not going to scare off the reader who is looking for valuable information. Be thorough with your writing and don’t skimp on important content that would be relevant to the topic you’re writing about.
People like to shop around before they commit to a purchase, and when it comes to the product or service you have to offer, it’s no different. Give your readers (aka potential customers) a taste of what they can expect when choosing your business over another one. Your written content must give readers a sense of your brand plus its products and services. Give them valuable information that they don’t have to pay for, and in turn, they may be more inclined to buy additional resources from you later at the end of their buyer journey.
We’re not saying you need to “Game of Thrones” your company’s content marketing strategy, but it does pay off to find a way to keep your readers coming back for more every week (or however often you release new content). Stick to a theme or a similar string of topics over a span of several blog posts instead of just one. Strategically deliver part one, two, and three. Always leave your readers wanting a little bit more (but be sure to give it to them in the next post or promise to give it to them with the products or services you have).
Back up your talking points with statistics and outside information from various, reputable studies. Link your content to external sources and give your readers a chance to check out the facts for themselves. This will establish greater credibility in your content and give readers a chance to digest even more information than what’s in your post– essentially doubling the value.
Readers will more readily accept your content as reputable and relevant if they know it is coming from an authority in that particular industry. Part of writing great content on a consistent basis is establishing yourself as an expert in the field. This can be accomplished by building your brand both online and offline. However, keep in mind that this is not something that can be done haphazardly, you must show a genuine interest in helping your readership. Engage your readers and potential customers with discussion, take the time to thoughtfully answer every question that you can and provide the resources your target audience doesn’t even know they need yet. Once you build a solid reputation and continue to uphold it, you can produce even better content that really offers value to your readers.
This is tricky because the Internet is a place where seemingly every idea and topic has already been covered several times over. Set aside some time to brainstorm new strategies and ways to tackle information from a different angle. Be on top of the latest news regarding your industry, whether you’re in the tech field, beauty industry, or any other product or service-based business. Delivering the news out to your readers before the competition is a sure way to give the readers valuable content that will benefit them and boost your brand strength.
Get readers to participate in the discussion by encouraging them to comment on your blog posts. Ask them what they want and need to know. Then, prompt them to directly send you messages with questions and use those responses to develop your next content pieces. By doing this, you are providing brand new information to your readers, but also making it easier on yourself when it comes to finding new topics for each piece.
Writing a spectacular blog post, email newsletter, or guest post for another blog or website isn’t just about the written word. Visuals are equally important. It’s a good idea to include a high-resolution professional image in your blog post that is, of course, relevant to the topic you’re writing about. If you fear a particularly dense, wordy post that you are working on will be difficult for the readers to absorb, consider breaking up the text with a couple of captivating images. This will make the paragraphs easy to digest and keep the readers on track with images that catch their attention.
Above all else, never make the mistake of attaching cheap, grainy, low-resolution images to your blog post. This reeks of unprofessionalism and shoddiness, and even the most unsophisticated eye will be able to sniff out a bad photo. Investing in high-quality images is worth it. Shutterstock and Pexels are good sites for high-quality images.
It’s all well and good to write an impeccable blog post chock full of cutting-edge information and valuable resources that your readers wouldn’t be able to find anywhere else. But what good is all of that without ending your blog posts with a call-to-action? After all, you don’t want your readers to forget all the information until a time when they remember they need it…only too quickly look up the same topic online and go to one of your competitors. Include a link to your website and provide detailed ways for readers to get in touch with you easily with any questions they have. Always include a call-to-action at the end of every blog post that you create. Which reminds us…
Think it’s time to revamp your content marketing strategy? Do you want to create killer content but just don’t have the time, resources, or skill set to produce engaging content? Get in touch with the team at ContentWriters today. The expert writers and marketing professionals of ContentWriters work on a national platform with businesses of all sizes to help optimize their content strategies. Whether you need brand-new web copy, an engaging blog, or an email newsletter, ContentWriters is here for you.
Shannon helps businesses get more business by crafting content with the most engaging, user-friendly, and marketable material. For over five years, she has crafted thousands of written pieces for hundreds of clients. Her range of work includes blog posts, music reviews, articles, interviews, product descriptions, press releases, public service announcements, sponsorship proposals, and social media content.