Although we often find ourselves getting caught up in the intricate technical details of content marketing, we should not let the more technical side of things draw us away from the basic principles that should underpin any piece of content we produce. While having an understanding of the latest changes to Google’s search engine algorithms is certainly important, we should remember that creating compelling content is as much an art as it is a science.
With that said, in this short blog post, we will give you a quick rundown of the basic principles that should underpin any content marketing effort you undertake. Regardless of whether it is a full-scale content marketing campaign you are trying to launch or a short blog post you want to write, these principles should guide you.
- Know your audience
By far the most important aspect of any sound content marketing strategy is knowing the audience you are writing for.
Knowing who exactly your audience is allows you to create compelling content that resonates with the target audience. Publishing content that is appropriately targeted to its target demographic will not only be easier to write, but will also have better outcomes in terms of click-throughs and overall visibility.
Conducting proper market research is essential to figuring out your intended audience, which should form the first step of any content marketing strategy.
- Choose your channel wisely
If you have gone to the effort of properly researching your target audience, you should not let this effort go to waste by publishing your content through an inappropriate channel. An ‘inappropriate’ channel is one that doesn’t suit the type of content you are posting.
Choosing the right channel will allow you to have better interactions with your audience. This is because certain types of audiences will be more attracted to certain types of publishing channels and platforms.
If you want to publish content on multiple different types of platforms, you might need to rewrite whatever content you are hoping to publish to better suit that platform. This is important if you are hoping to take a multi-channel marketing approach.
- Strike the right voice and tone
When you are creating content to publish, it is particularly important to use the right tone and voice.
Every brand, business and company has its own unique identity, which will also be reflected in the ‘voice’ it adopts in its internal and external communications. When you are creating content you want to publish, it is essential that the content is consistent with that brand identity and voice. This is particularly important for a large team creating content across multiple publishing channels. In this context, it is really important to get the consistency of the voice and tone correct.
- Create value
An often-overlooked principle that is incredibly important to creating compelling content is the need for the content in question to create value for the reader.
Your audience puts time and effort into reading the content you publish, and they should be rewarded for their efforts. Providing value through your content will help create positive relationships with your audience and foster brand loyalty in the longer term.
Before you publish any piece of content, be sure to ask yourself, ‘what value does this bring?’ This might be practical tips, tutorials, general information, or even a special offer or promotion. It might also be something as intangible as making them laugh or feel better about themselves.
- Be original
Another frequently overlooked principle is the need for originality.
This means that you should always avoid plagiarising content that your competitors have produced or simply repurposing content you have previously published without creating any additional value.
It also means that you should always be trying to create new and interesting content that creates value in exciting ways.
Originality comes in many forms and doesn’t just relate to the need to write on new topics. It can also be originality in terms of your writing style or the ‘voice’ you try to adopt.
Prioritising engagement when you are delivering on a content marketing strategy means avoiding the one-sided interactions that produce poor results and create little value for the audience.
Users will always respond positively to active engagement, whether embedded in the blog post or article you are publishing or in the interactions you create on particular platforms.
User participation is a potent tool for creating positive engagements with your audience, and it is something you should always strive for in your content marketing strategy.
- Embrace change
If there is one constant thing in the world of content marketing, it is that change is inevitable.
This is something you will not only need to accept to be a successful content marketer, but is also something you will need to embrace.
Being receptive to change means keeping track of your audience’s changing tastes or target demographics. It also means being receptive to technological changes in the industry. The technologies underpinning content marketing are forever in a state of flux, with new advances happening all the time. Embrace these if you want to stay ahead of the pack!
8: Be reflective
One of the principles of content marketing that will arguably ensure that you see the most long-term success is the need to be reflective.
This means reflecting on anything you produce or the techniques you use and identifying what works and what doesn’t.
Given that change is constant in content marketing, you need to create the habit of reflecting on your work and finding ways to improve your outputs.
Creating a principles-based content marketing strategy
Although the technical side of content marketing is something you will inevitably need to come to grips with, these are not the only considerations you need to keep in mind when you are looking to create compelling content that delivers results. By putting these basic principles at the heart of any content you produce, you will be well on your way towards this.
With that said, if you do want some help putting together an effective content marketing strategy that delivers results, feel free to reach out to one of the Purecontent team today. By setting up a one-on-one consultation, we can help you identify your goals and get you started on your journey. Get in contact today!