They sometimes say that great ideas are a dime-a-dozen. And there’s probably some truth to this. Having a brilliant idea isn’t very hard! It’s the journey from idea to execution that’s challenging. It requires a framework, craftsmanship, discipline, and persistence. In today’s world, where content is being thrown at us from every direction (as an example, a whopping 2 million blog posts are published every day), creating successful content becomes all the more tricky.
In the past decade, we’ve seen many clients struggle with content creation — there are those who face such inertia that they never get a content plan in place while others create a few brilliant pieces and then just stop. But the good news for all is that, here are some of the best-kept content creation secrets that we’ve discovered over the years:
Build the right content creation model
As a brand, you have to figure out the content creation model that will work best for you in the long run. If you have the bandwidth and the resources, you can hire an in-house content creation team. This is the best option if you need to produce a high volume of content or create content for multiple platforms. If your subject matter is highly technical and requires you to educate your audience, consider hiring subject matter experts.
If you don’t have the resources for a full-fledged in-house time, hiring specialist freelance writers or content agencies is a great, cost-effective option. If you have a B2B product with a strong community, you can even consider guest posts from contributors as a viable engine for great content. Whichever model you opt for, it’s important that you find what works for you before you start executing a full-fledged content plan.
Build your audience persona and work with it
This is the most important rule when it comes to creating effective content. You need to understand your target audience and build effective buyer personas. This means you have to define everything you know about your ideal audience member — how educated they are, where they live, how old they are, what kind of work they do, which gender do they belong to, what their interests are, and so on.
Sometimes, if your audience is a bit diverse, one persona won’t be enough. So, you might have to create a set of personas. Fleshing out these details about audience members will help you understand exactly who you’re addressing, and your content will be much more relatable as a result.
Zero in on a content niche
Do you know what they say about stand-up comedy?
You’re more likely to become successful in the long run if a small group of people consider you to be hysterically funny, rather than if a large group of people think you’re mildly hilarious. The same is true for content. When you’re starting out, you don’t want to invest all your energy and resources across multiple channels and different content formats. Zero in on a viable content niche where you can become the master of the domain and build your following from there.
Identify your unique content prowess by asking yourself some important questions. These include:
- Is your audience longing for this kind of content and not getting it anywhere else?
- Can you become an authority in your industry within this niche?
- Do you have the time and resources to create valuable content within this niche and in the right content format?
Create shareable content
It’s not enough to just create brilliant content. It’s important that this content is focused on topics that will help you generate shares and backlinks. For this, you need to research keywords to make sure you’re choosing the right topic. To start with, get on Google and search for keywords in your niche. Remember to use informational keywords rather than product-based keywords. For instance, you should use keywords like “how to make good coffee at home” rather than “mocha pot” or “coffee maker”. You can then enter the details of the websites of the top results into a backlink checker like Ahrefs.com or Open Site Explorer. This will give you a list of the top-performing content.
Now what you need to do is build a piece of content around the same topic, but one that’s much richer and more valuable than the existing content on the subject. Remember, the pieces that rank high have been around longer than what you will produce, so you need to make sure your content is far superior, or you’ll find it harder to rank higher. You can do this by making sure that the content is more relevant to your audience, that it has better design, is more current, or has more details.
Use long-form, evergreen content for sustained traffic
There are two rules of thumb that every content creator should keep in mind. The first is that long-form content works better in the long run. If you look at Google’s search engine rankings, the top 10 results are usually of 1000 words or more. So, while consistency is the key to better SEO, 400-600 word blog posts simply aren’t enough. Try to create more in-depth content (anywhere between 1000-3000 words) to eke out a position as an authority in your niche.
Another great trick is to use evergreen content. This refers to content which doesn’t change significantly with time. Writing high-quality, in-depth beginner’s guides or how-to articles are great examples of evergreen content as they don’t really come with an expiry date. Having great evergreen content also helps you to attract traffic to your blog in the long run.
The last word
These are some of the secrets to effective content creation that we’ve discovered along the way. They should work as a great framework for you. If you have any more questions, or if you think there are some other secrets we’ve missed out on, do let us know in the comments section.
Watch: 6 SEO Myths that you need to trash today