Writing for content marketing requires a careful balance between providing your audience with new information and encouraging readers to turn to your client for a purchase. This is completely unlike article writing (where your primary intent is to inform) and copy writing (where you are overtly pushing for a sale). With content writing, you need to present your client as an expert in the field, offer users information they will be unable to find elsewhere, and speak directly to your target audience. To succeed on all counts, you need to take action that enables you to stand out from the crowd.
1. Develop an Expert Voice
Beyond ensuring that your content contains no factual errors, write in a voice that reflects your deep understanding of the subject matter. In many cases, this may call for in-depth research. If you specialize in a particular area of content marketing writing, stay up to date in the field by reading other blogs and following industry trends.
2. Get to the Point
Readers interact with web content very differently from other types of writing, such as printed media. For instance, only 16 percent of users read every word of blog posts, according to a study by the Nielsen Norman Group. Grab your readers’ attention before they have even encountered your first sentence by using a strong headline. Follow up by presenting the most important information in your initial paragraph and go into greater detail in the body of the post.
3. Know Your Audience
For any content marketing efforts to be effective, posts need to target specific readers. Your clients should be able to provide you with buyer personas that detail the characteristics, demographics, and psychographics of readers. This will tell you what tone to use, how much explanation users will need about a particular subject, and what angle to take with your content.
4. Use SEO Tactics
SEO is essential for content marketing and is actually quite easy, involving little extra effort on your part. You will automatically optimize your content by writing to high quality, addressing just a single point, and avoiding jargon. You can improve your chances of receiving a high search engine ranking further by using (but not overusing) keywords naturally within the text.
5. Create an Appropriate Call-to-Action
For a post to become an active part of a content marketing strategy, it needs to end by telling readers what to do next. The most appropriate type of call-to-action (CTA) will depend on where users are in the buying cycle. If they are in the initial stages, you may like to just suggest engaging with content, such as by sharing or commenting. If they are ready to make a purchase, however, a better CTA would send readers to the products page on your client’s website.
Every time you write a piece of content, try to make it better than the last. By constantly seeking tips to improve your writing, you will enhance your clients’ content marketing strategy.