Not all of us consider ourselves the next budding Shakespeare.
Not many of us actually enjoy writing. In fact, very few of us actually sit down to write with any confidence that we have the skills to create something that others will not only find interesting but will also lead to a possible sale.
The fact is we are all experts in one essential area: The product or service we wish to sell.
That puts you way ahead of anyone else. True, you can use professional writers, and as much as they can save you time and grief, they can also be expensive – or at the very least add an extra cost you do not need.
OK – we know all the excuses – I am not good at writing – I haven’t really got the time, the dogs just eaten the rabbit etc etc. But as I pointed out in my article Content Marketing boosts loyalty as well as generating leads the internet is the most efficient form of marketing and communicating in the 21st century and the fundamental building blocks of this super impressive tool is quality content.
The good news is you don’t have to be a whizz in English literature. There are simple cornerstones which will get you on your way to creating great content that sells, enhances your brand and converts. So here we go:
1. Know your Target market
This will determine your style of writing. For instance, an article for a professional solicitor is likely to be totally different from one aimed at teenage pop fans. Speak their language and they are more likely to respond.
2. Focus on your goal
Before you even start writing, get a clear idea in your mind what the point of the article is. Is it to generate leads? Is it to enhance brand and loyalty? Is it going to focus on a specific service or product? Having this focus will help you to focus on the most important elements and calls to action.
3. Don’t forget the 80/20 rule
Sell, sell, sell has no place on the internet – especially social media where you are trying to build up robust client and associate networks. 80% of the article should be useful information where 20% is pushing the service you provide in the way of links, brand and calls to action.
4. Location, location, location
Where the article sits on the net will also determine wording. Will it be on your own site (enhancing the knowledge of your industry)? Or will it be distributed over social media or bookmarking sites. Could it be used in an email campaign where it may need to be more punchy and direct?
5. Headline news
Probably the most important part of the article is the headline. This is what has to engage the reader and get them to click further. So it should encapsulate how the reader will benefit from taking that time out. At the same time you don’t want to give too much away. Click bait is very useful in social media with such headlines as “Shocking revelations show how negative results of diets!”
Bet you click on that one…
6. Brand aware
Keep your brand at the front of your mind all the time and repeat it throughout within reason. Articles are a great vehicle for brand awareness.
7. Accessible for the Internet reader
People do not read on the internet – they scan. So use small paragraphs, lots of sub-titles and short sentences rather than long ones.
8. SEO friendly
Never forget your old keywords in the meta titles, headings, sub headings and a nice sprinkling throughout the text. Don’t overdo it – or you’ll get penalised by Google. It is often more useful to use synonyms rather than overstating your keyword again and again.
9. Unique powerful stuff
With any product or service – you buy what you consider quality. If you give your client quality they are more likely to buy. So get to know them and provide articles which solves their problems.
10. Think loyalty
A continuous flow of high quality articles which answer and inform your target market are perfect for creating a loyal audience who regularly click into your website. This is the first step to trust and ultimately conversions in the long game.
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