We’d all like our blog posts to be effective. To generate traffic (of the relevant variety!) and draw new prospects in. Once those visitors reach our blog, we’d like them to read what we’re saying, or at least stick around long enough to not negatively impact our bounce rates.

All too often, though, our blog posts fall flat. 

We write up an article, upload it to WordPress, format it, and hit publish. And then nothing. No comments, no views, no uptick in traffic. Just crickets.

When that post we worked hard on just doesn’t deliver, what went wrong?

The truth is, it could be a number of things. Sometimes the content is boring. Other times there’s just a simple lack of interest. Maybe a topic we thought would resonate with our audience ended up failing to impress. Maybe it’s a lack of traction; maybe we forgot to promote it on social media. Sometimes, though, even though we do (seemingly) everything, there’s still a chance that we’ll publish our content, wait, and nothing.

If you’d like to start benefiting from a content strategy that’ll draw people in, then you need to create content that’ll resonate with your audience. With this in mind, here’s a look at some things that you can do to create high-quality content that’ll set you apart from the competition.

Tips for Creating Good Content

Creating content and creating good content: there’s a tremendous chasm between the two. Here’s a look at some tips for creating content that will both draw your audience in (SEO) and resonate with them (conversions).

Focus on Your Target Audience

First and foremost, always look to create customer-centric content. 

This means taking the time to identify your target audience, and then looking to create content that they’ll enjoy and will resonate with them.

If you find that you’re struggling with reader engagement, there’s a chance that you’ll need to adjust your content strategy. Sometimes this involves going back to the drawing board and asking a few key questions like: “Who is my target reader?” and “What type of content can help them solve their problems?” 

It’s always important to try to put your customer’s needs first: what type of problems are they facing that you could address in your content? How can you educate them on how your product will help to eliminate their pain points? Of course, some of your content could simply be free, relevant advice. It’s nice to share insight and experience. Plus, sometimes advice can serve as a stepping stone to prospects learning more about your products or services. You never know.

It’s also a good idea to check your site’s traffic and your conversion rates. Is your traffic relevant? Or are you simply drawing in visitors who aren’t interested, and therefore unlikely to convert?

Remember: make your content relevant to your target customer. If you’re not sure how to go about identifying your target audience, take a look at this article with tips on: Identifying your ideal customer and creating buyer personas.

Update Old Content

As a general rule, you should continually update and refresh any old content on your website, with the exception being basic information and resources that define your business and are invaluable to a customer. Update old, out-of-date content ruthlessly, otherwise it’s just a huge waste of space. Readers don’t like getting halfway through a blog post only to realize it’s from six years ago and contains content that’s now outdated. Plus, fresh new content is helpful from an SEO perspective as well as search engines like recent content.

Share Relevant News

With certain topics, timing is everything. Being able to jump on a topic as quickly as possible, while it’s most relevant, can give you a head start. While news arrives in many shapes and sizes, in order to gain customer attention and build responsiveness you want to track issues that are important to their immediate interests. Highlight news items that impact them, specifically.

Use Great Images

Make every image part of your story. Not just pretty pictures, but pictures that move your story forward and add real value. Include images of your team at work, your products, or a glimpse behind the scenes. Any time that you have relevant, personal images, use those. The next best option is professional stock images but look for ones that help to further your message and not distract from it. And always choose images that are consistent with your brand.

Provide Value-Packed Content

Try to say everything in as few words as possible. Writing for the web, and an increasingly mobile audience should be value-packed, engaging, and short and sweet. Get to the point and make your message clear. Make sure each sentence provides something of value to your readers or else you risk losing them when they click away. 

Share Stories to Inspire

Who doesn’t love a great story? If you have some personal insight or a story that you can share, then do it! This will make your content more accessible and friendly and will help you to connect with your audience better.

Reveal Some Insider Tips

An easy way to gain confidence and buy-in from a potential customer is to offer expertise and insight. This expertise should give you credibility, authority, and promote trust. It should also provide value and save your customers time. 

Answer Your Audience’s Questions

One excellent way to find relevant topics that your audience is interested in is by seeing what questions they’re asking. If you find one or two people asking the same question, chances are others have the same ones. A couple of great resources that I use to see what’s being asked are Answer the Public and AlsoAsked.com. You can also set Google Alerts for the keywords you are writing about, to answer the most top-of-mind questions customers have. Finally, Reddit can be another great place to find questions that your audience is asking. Head over to the subreddits, find a relevant group, and see what people are asking.

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Use Videos

Today’s mobile audience loves video. Whenever possible, look to include videos along with your written content. Or share videos on their own, providing a transcript whenever possible (for SEO). It’s not just your blog that can benefit from videos; video ads, videos on social media, and video testimonials, are all great for drumming up interest and boosting your credibility. And of course, getting your video content onto YouTube can also help you to reach a wider audience.

Launch a Podcast

Do you have a podcast? They’re time-consuming, but for the right audience, they can be worth it. Podcasts or audio blogs make a lot of sense for mobile users; they just plug in their headphones and listen while doing something else. Perfect for reaching your audience while they’re on-the-go.

Publish Some Research

A great tip from the world of business is to review your entire operation as a source of interesting data or research for customers. Any original insights or data that you can publish on your blog will help to position you as an expert or source. Plus, you’ll benefit from a link back to your blog whenever someone refers to your data.

A good example of useful data is an industry profile or table of product performance which shows a customer why you stock your products. In order to be captivating, data requires good metrics and a layout that’s easy to observe, like an infographic.

Stay Cutting Edge

As voice-activated search and shopping is going through the roof, this new technology demands that your blog posts follow the trend and update your content to suit interactive search and purchases. One key difference between traditional search engine results and voice-activated search, is that voice only delivers one search result per query. For this reason, getting your website to appear in voice search may center around trying to get your content to appear as a featured snippet in Google. Learn more.

Attract More Readers to Your Blog

It’s not always enough to simply create content and release it into the wild. It’s a great start, of course, but there are things that you can do to boost your content’s reach and give it the best chance possible.

So how do you compete against the hundreds and potentially thousands of digital competitors?

Promote It on Social Media

In an age when people are spending hours daily on social media platforms, you have to create breakthrough ideas, content, and promotions that move beyond the everyday. Social media is a great medium for generating interest. Just keep in mind that when it comes to social media, you’ll usually have to pay to play. Marketing can only go so far unless you’ve got the time and effort to invest and really know what you’re doing. Running ads is far more effective, but of course, the downside is the cost. Fortunately, there are campaigns that can suit any budget, which means you should be able to get a decent return on your investment, even if it’s relatively small. One strategy involves taking your best-performing blog content and paying to promote it on social media. This will help you to target interested prospects who are interested in what you’re saying and selling.

See also: Social media ad platforms: a comparison.

Email Marketing

Email connects your blog content with an email distribution format. Using an email client like Mailchimp makes it easy to not only send out professional consistent content to your subscribers; but it also allows you to segment your list, which means you’ll be able to send targeted messages to the right audience; increasing your open rates.

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If you don’t yet have an email list, you’ll want to work on building one as soon as possible. Consider creating a lead magnet, and promoting it on your website and blog. Offering free content, like a guide or e-book exchange for email addresses can be a great way to grow your list. Just make sure you offer content that’s relevant to your audience. This allows you to collect relevant emails while also giving you a chance to warm your prospects. A win-win!

Turn to Public Relations (PR)

Many smaller businesses often disregard the power of public relations (PR) due to the cost of employing experts and agencies. But a good PR consultant is invaluable for startups and long-standing businesses alike. They can help you find good opportunities to feature in media that’ll allow you to reach your target audience. They’ll also help you tailor your messages to your many segmented audiences, helping you to stand out from the crowd.

Team Up With Influencers

Influencer marketing has grown alongside social media in recent years, and today, it’s one of the go-to tools that companies of all sizes can use to add credibility to their business and boost their sales. 

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One of the key benefits of influencer marketing is that unlike other forms of marketing, like SEO and content marketing, the results are almost immediate. Once your influencer shares a post promoting your product, you’ll notice an uptick in views, and ideally, sales. The downside? The benefits of influencer marketing are not long-lasting; you’ll need to keep on investing if you want those hits to keep rolling in.

Claim Your Business Listings

Local and business listings are essential paths to bring customers and browsers to your blog content and to create backlinks to your digital footprint. Don’t neglect these listings, make sure you’ve claimed them to ensure that you’re drawing relevant traffic to your site.

Use Tools and Services to Make Life Easier

One of the great things about creating content today is that there are tools available that can help. From SEO tools like SurferSEO or Ahrefs that’ll help you to find keywords and ensure that your content’s optimized for your audience, to collaboration platforms like Airtable or Slack that make it easier to organize your team and content. 

Or, consider a content distribution service, like what we offer at Carrier Pigeon, that can get your content out to a wider audience, hassle-free.

Great content creation can be summed up like this: keep your audience in mind and your message clear. Excellent content is almost always the result of these two things working together. 

This approach will help you to target the right people in the first place, and give you a clear direction on what kind of content you should be producing. This will allow you to ensure that you’re creating blog content that not only gets noticed, but leads to conversions, helping you to put your time and resources into a strategy that will generate results.

Ready to get your message out to a wider audience? At Carrier Pigeon, we can help. Reach out today for your FREE 20-minute consultation to see about outsourcing the work that’s involved with a content distribution plan.

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