quality content

I’m sure each one of you has read a blog article stressing the importance of creating quality content, but how do you define “quality” content?  Further, how can you be expected to create quality content when you don’t know what exactly constitutes “quality” content?  In this article, I’m going to define (what I consider) “quality” content, and then give you a few valuable tips on developing said quality content.

Defining “Quality”

The short version of my answer is: several factors make up quality content. Content needs to be engaging and have a purpose.  It needs to contain something that has value for the targeted reader, and it needs to be backed by strategy.  If content was created just for the sake of having content, it’s not what I consider “quality”.  Among these factors, content must also be optimized (which I will discuss further shortly) and it must be well-written, applicable, and thoughtful.

Now that I’ve defined what I consider to be “quality” content, here are 3 tips that each can be applied for blog, social, and premium content development.

Developing Blogging Content

  1. Goals (What’s your reason?)
    Why are you writing this blog article? Are you writing it because you were told you should be blogging? Then you’re on the fast track to terrible content! You need to define your goals for each blog post before you sit down and write it.  What is the outcome or action you want to occur when someone reads your article?  Is it purely for educational purposes? Do you want to create awareness around an industry trend or a solution your company offers? Think carefully about how this blog article will fit into the overall strategy you’ve developed and execute on that.  Not only will that you give you a direction to focus on for your blog article, it will also produce results (which is why you are blogging in the first place!) Be sure to know who the audience for your blog article is, and make sure your goals for that particular post align with the goals you have for that overall persona in your content strategy.

  2. Mix it up (Something for everybody!)
    Most businesses have multiple personas that they are trying to target as customers.  Not only do you need to think about creating blog content that will be attractive to each of these personas, you also need to think about creating a variety of content that will speak to them as they experience different stages of the buyer’s journey (awareness, consideration, decision). What I’m saying is, mix it up!  You need to create an ample mix of blog content that is targeted at different individuals, at different stages, and it needs to have a ton of variety.  Don’t always create posts about your products or services, or only post about industry news, or only post about company news – a variety will be most attractive to your reader, regardless of what stage they’re in!

  3. Optimize (Research!)
    When you’re creating a blog post, you need to make sure some research and thought went into developing the topic and supporting details.  Whether you’re an industry expert or you’re blogging about a topic you’re unsure of, research will always add value to your content.  Additionally, using outside sources to research can help you optimize your post by including outbound links to those resources (which will prove valuable and helpful to your readers) and search engines will see that you put together a quality article because you did do that outside research, increasing your rank.  It is also important to research and integrate key words into your article for SEO purposes, too.

Developing Social Content

  1. Goals (What’s your reason?)
    Social posts are awesome for promoting the blog posts you created.  Like blog posts, it’s important to come up with a reason for each social post.  Again, if you’re Tweeting just to Tweet, that’s not quality.  What is the outcome I want from each post? What is my goal? How is this helping my overall strategy? These are the questions you should be asking yourself every time you’re creating a social post.
  1. Mix it up (Something for everybody!)
    Again, you’re targeting different personas online that you’re hoping to turn into customers.  Therefore, you need something for everybody! While maintaining a consistent image and voice is important through all your brand social channels, you still need to be posting content that is useful for different individuals, in different stages.  Posting a variety of content will be successful, and if you “mixed it up” on your blog content creation, it should be easy to mix it up with your social posts, since you can promote those articles!  Also mix up which channels you’re posting on, try using images, and post a variety of your premium content and blog content.
  1. Optimize (Research!)
    Optimizing on social posts is just as important as it is on blog posts. You still want to research the topic you’re posting on and source outside resources, thought-leaders, and influencers.  Social media is all about engagement, so you want to put thought into your posts to create engagement, especially if you will be posting in a professional group on LinkedIn, for example. Additionally, you will want to optimize your posts by using key #hashtags and tags.

Developing Premium Content

  1. Goals (What’s your reason?)
    Premium content is crucial for any successful content strategy.  As the backbone of your content, it takes the longest to create but gives you (and your customers) the most value!  Again, you need to come up with an overall strategy for each premium content offer you’re creating.  Why am I creating this? What is my goal? What will this do for our company? How will this convert a lead into a customer?
  1. Mix it up (Something for everybody!)
    Premium content offers the most opportunity to “mix it up” with a variety of offers.  You can create infographics, case studies, white papers, webinars, videos, checklists, calculators, eBooks, the list goes on! Not only should you mix up what type of offer you’re creating, you need to create these offers for each persona, and for each funnel stage. (Are you seeing a pattern?)
  1. Optimize (Research!)
    Optimizing premium content is a little different than blogs or social posts. This type of content will be the most research-heavy and your offers will be a huge flop if you didn’t spend ample time researching the topic and compiling valuable information to utilize.  You will want to include keywords and industry terms, and you can still include inbound and outbound links in your content, but you will want to draw personas to your content through CTAs and promotion on blog posts, social posts, and your website.  It is important to put the time and research into your premium content offers because these are what all of your other content is tied to.

 

Creating “quality” content takes time, and if you utilize these 3 tips for each type of content development, you’ll be a pro in no time.  If you haven’t noticed, your content is all intertwined – create premium content that will be advertised on your blog and inspire blog content, and create social content that will advertise your premium and blog content.  That’s why it is so important to create quality content through each medium to ensure your overall strategy is successful.  Still need help with content development? Download our Inbound Marketing Starter Kit!

 

How to Launch An Inbound Marketing Campaign

 

Topics: Inbound, Social, Strategy

RR_NewWebsite_HP_V4-COS-FIN-1.png

Six Symptoms of a Sick Website

And Your Prescription to a Better Website

Your website is the heart of your organization's digital body,
neglecting it can cause as much damage to your company as
neglecting your heart can cause to your actual body.

FIND OUT MORE