This post is unique. It’s unique because it stood out to you amongst the tens-of-millions of bits of digital content that are shaped, shared and consumed on a daily basis (thanks for finding it!). And, although it can be daunting to think about the sheer volume of content that’s circulating, it’s not just about the content that’s out there, but where it gets shared.
You may have landed here by way of social media or perhaps you were searching the depths of Google for help on this topic. Either way, this discovery process proves that brands have to be present where their audiences are and tailor content so that it connects with them in order to engage. So, since you’re here, let’s explore a handful of approaches that can help you create content that your audience loves.
Know your audience. I know, this tip isn’t new, but it’s definitely something our team is passionate about. Don’t generate content that only matters to you. Instead, share discoveries, insights and observations that also matter to your key audiences. We have worked with a handful of clients who have benefited from taking their knowledge and shaping content to be more approachable. For example, transforming an information-rich study into a series of appealing infographics or breaking down an ebook into blog posts with charts and images are great ways to illustrate your expertise in a digestible manner. If you generate content that shows you care, you’ll not only earn consumer trust, but you’ll also become an invaluable resource.
Real-time relevancy is another way your brand can connect with your target audience. Brands have seen an increase in engagement when they let their more “human” side show, like when they react publicly to current events or participate in real-time social conversations. Authentic interactions allow brands to show a side of vulnerability and empathy, which is appealing to consumers. This is a positive trend in our industry; however, keep in mind that it requires your content team to be savvy, nimble and ready to take the good with the bad.
I have the luxury of working with some incredibly intelligent and savvy digital strategists. There’s truly a lot of left-brain activity going on here at Ciceron. Not only am I provided with data and insights regarding what our clients’ audiences need, but I have access to knowledge about the best channels to employ in order to distribute any given message—it truly is a right-brainer’s dream. We have the ability to make a connection between the process of imagination and purpose. Once your content has been deployed, it’s important to seek out opportunities to measure and monitor how it performs to guide future decisions. Avoid filling the interwebs with needless content; offer value in ways that align your audience and your business goals.
There’s a quote I once heard that has stayed with me for a while:
“In a world full of Cheerios, be a Froot Loop.”
I love this phrase, not only because I’m a huge cereal eater, but because I am a true believer in turning things inside out, exploring webs of possibilities, and imagining content that is daring or slightly unexpected. Sure, if you’re sound in your decisions to “play it safe,” you’ll still be able to connect with your audience. But, to rise above, why not use a 64-count box of crayons versus just eight? Take a risk once in a while and you’re bound to get noticed. If it sparks interest or conversation with your audience, that proves that they’re engaged. Case in point: When you think of some of the most memorable Superbowl ad campaigns, a lot of them stand out because they were different (dare I say, “Puppy-Monkey-Baby?”).
You don’t have to go to the extreme, but consider taking a chance and exploring unique ways to share your message. A provoking headline can be a simple, bold way to spark interest. Or maybe an interactive video can tell a better story than words are able to. Just keep in mind that although getting noticed is great, don’t lose sight of why you’re generating content—your audience wants to be informed and inspired.
Be persistent, but also be patient.
As you likely know, it takes time to produce relevant content. It also takes time to establish a following. If you employ simple ways to be found online, like leveraging smart search tactics, you will start to attract more attention. And as your volume of high-quality content increases, your traffic will increase and search engines will give you a higher ranking. Also, you’ll be able to differentiate yourself when you have unique data or insights to share. So, take the time to listen to your audience and uncover something new that they will value and appreciate, and push it out to their community.
Bottom line: Be you.
Don’t try and be something you’re not. No matter what your competitors are doing, you’ve got to be true to your brand. Not only will your audience find you, but they’ll value your individuality and be more likely to care about what you have to say.
Want to discuss how to make your content stand out? Email me – email@example.com.