How to create valuable content

by Laura Turner
07 Sep 2017
9 min read
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How to create valuable content

Is your content working for you? If it’s increasing your brand awareness, driving more traffic to your website, boosting your SEO and growing your client database – you don’t need to read any further. If your content isn’t doing any of the above, it’s time to revisit your approach to creating content. Great content sets you apart from your competition, engages your audiences, and grows your existing and potential markets and leads.

In a world that’s flooded with messages from multiple sources all vying for your attention, yours needs to stand out from the rest. We’ve put together our top tips for creating great content. There is however one caveat – this isn’t a quick fix, or a magic formula. It takes a lot of blood, sweat and tears (well, at the very least; perseverance and dedication) to develop and create valuable digital assets that work for your brand and your audience. It requires continuous adjustments and updates to ensure you’re content is working just as hard as you are.

Tip #1: Balance quantity and quality

Share quality content. Every piece of content you publish online is ranked by Google, which in turn impacts your SEO. Google is a major player on the Internet and is most likely responsible for sending the majority of traffic to your website – so make sure you are sharing relevant and useful content that Google will rank favourably.  Quality content also reflects positively on your brand as it builds rapport with your audience and drives traffic, interaction and engagement on your site, which is also ranked favourably by Google!

But what does ‘quality’ content look like? Its content that’s relevant, focused, logical and provides some value to the user. Create your own tone of voice and celebrate your brand and what sets you apart from your competitors. People connect with brands through emotion, not information, so focus on enhancing those emotional connections with them with creative content. Make sure your content:

  • Adds value – be engaging and thought provoking, tell stories and serve your audience content that focuses on them and their needs.
  • Originality – don’t recreate something you have already seen online – your audience won’t like it and neither will Google. Original content ranks high with your target market and search engines.
  • Keep it short and to the point – the internet is flooded with information– so ensure yours stands out with punchy headlines that make sense to your target market.
  • Be visual – Be sure to include photos, videos and infographics to create eye catching content that is easily and quickly digested, and communicates a clear message.

Fine-tune content quantity. Sharing content frequently helps increase your brand awareness and helps you reach a wide audience. People are creatures of habit and browse digital content regularly and expect to see something new each and every time the scroll through screens. And we don’t need to tell you that digital consumption is exponentially growing, year on year. The more often you post, the higher the chance is that your content is seen and higher the possibility of your content being shared – helping increase your brand awareness. There is no hard and fast rule as to how often you should be posting, but the below platform standards are a good indication to go by:

  • Blog: 1 - 2 per week, at a minimum
  • Facebook: once a day
  • Instagram: 1 – 2 times a day
  • LinkedIn: 2 – 3 times per week
  • Twitter: 8 - 15 tweets a day (including retweets)

These are recommended posting frequencies, however ensure you keep in mind the size of your online community and their habits. For example: if you have a small audience (less than 1,000) that use the internet daily, posting five times a day might spam them and deter them from engaging and sharing your content. On the other hand, if your audience is highly engaged, they’ll be checking back frequently for fresh new posts. It pays to really understand your audience and how they interact with wht you share to determine how often you want to communicate with them online. Determine who your audience personas are, their user journey with your brand, and the reason they are online.

Finding the balance between quality and quantity –quality content takes time to produce, so you may need to post less often than recommend - ultimately, you need to find the sweet spot that works for you, for Google, and your target market(s).

Tip #2: Promote your content                                           

Once you start creating quality content the next step is to ensure that your audience can find it! To ensure “discoverability” of your content it’s crucial to understand who is likely to come across your content, why they would want to see it, and what their end objective is for your content. The first place most people go when searching online is the Holy Grail - Google. So ensure your content is found and ranked by Google.

Learn about your target market and make connections through understanding their online movements:

  • Leverage off partnerships and social media influencers to help share your content to their existing, loyal audience to gain credibility and trust amongst new and untapped markets.
  • Develop email marketing and social campaigns to support your content efforts, create consistency and build your audience.

Creating a network of content through various channels only increases your credibility. This digital ‘word of mouth’ enables amplification of your brand and helps you tap into new audiences.

Be cautions that you don’t go overboard and use too many tags, keywords, links and the like as you run the risk that Google interprets your content as spam, and this can have a detrimental impact on your content. Make sure they are relevant and logical to your content. And be specific when partnering with other brands and influencers, as you want to ensure that they are in line with your brand and will work favourably for you. Again, find a good balance of how to use these to make your content discoverable. 

Tip #3: Tell your audience what to do next

By now you are regularly creating quality, findable content. So, what next? Your content needs a clear call to action (CTA). Tell your audience what you want them to do next. A clear call to action encourages your audience to engage with your content – whether that be a click, a like, share or comment, a visit to your website, mailing list sign up, or any other conversion.

The trick is to weave these call to actions within your content so they are organic and feel natural to the user, and something that they would choose to do, rather than feel as though they are forced. Successful CTA’s use a combination of design (colour, size, shape, position, location) and copy (clickable language, number of words, style). People expect to be asked or told to take action, so make it as easy as possible. Here are some great examples of ‘call to actions’ that follow best practice:

The Netflix homepage has a clear call to action and language which encourages the user to ‘join for free’ with no obligations communicating ease and transparency of membership.

UNICEF Australia displays prominent buttons which utlise a consistent colour scheme and clear precise language.

Grey Goose Vodka use interesting and engaging and emotive language which connects with the user and encourages interaction.

So, to summarize what we’ve covered:

Tip #1: Balance quantity and quality

Post frequently, but don’t post if you haven’t got anything valuable to share!

Tip #2: Promote your content

Gone are the days of organic reach – put your money where your mouth (or keyboard) is. Literally.

Tip #3: Tell your audience what to do next

Guide them through the experience you want them to have, and help them get to where you want them to go!

Creating valuable content is not a ‘set and forget’ and requires continual innovation and adaptation. Search engines, and your audience love fresh new content. It keeps your website ranking up and drives regular traffic to your site. By following these tips you are sure to create content which resonates with your overall business objectives, your audience, and those ever important search engines – everyone wins!

Once you have a good base to start, you’re on your way. From there, create, evaluate, and moderate. Repeat.

If you’d like some assistance with your digital content strategy, get in touch.

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