Did you know that 70% of consumers learn about a business from the articles on their site?
Content writing has come a long way, and knowing how to create the perfect article to draw your audience in and provide a quality experience each time, is essential.
In fact, 60% of customers reported feeling more confident in a company after engaging with custom content on their website.
Informative and entertaining articles help foster trust with your audience and gives them a way to gain a deeper understanding of your business (especially when the content is packed with value!)
Writing blogs may not be for everyone, but adding them to your marketing strategy can have a profound impact on your consumer engagement. By starting now, you can get a head start on increasing your brand awareness and consumer interaction in the new year.
In this article, we’re going to share some content writing essentials and some common mistakes to avoid, making it easy to transform your content into heavy-hitting articles that resonate with your audience!
5 Content Writing Essentials to Make Your Blogs More Effective
1. Know Your Goal
With each piece of content you write, it’s important to know your goal and how this content will support that while remaining relevant to your audience.
- Trying to educate your audience?
- Highlight a certain product or service?
- Nurture a connection with your consumers?
Whatever your main goal is with each piece, you’ll need to form your writing around it.
For example, this particular piece of content you’re reading is designed to educate, so including facts and actionable content is an important aspect to include.
2. Write an Attention-Grabbing Hook
Whether it’s a webpage, sales page, or blog article, your hook is the heavy-hitter of the content.
This is the first line your audience will read, and it’s essential it grabs their attention and piques their interest enough to continue reading.
To create an effective hook, try to pull your audience in without giving away too much information, teasing them to read further for the answer.
Here’s the thing…
Whatever your hook is alluding to, you must deliver!
Articles build credibility with your audience, and if you entice a reader with the promise of a valuable piece of information they’re looking for, failing to give it to them is a quick way to burn the bridge you’re building!
Take this article, for example. The first line is a statistic that hints at the importance of content on your site. If we didn’t follow that up with valuable information on how you can effectively write articles, we wouldn’t be making good on what you expected to read!
3. Make Your Headlines Clear and Relevant
Your headlines should be a dead giveaway for what each section holds. They should be straightforward, clear, and concise.
No one wants to read a headline that’s two lines long!
Everyone consumes content differently, with some people preferring to read everything the article has to offer, while others simply want their questions answered.
Your content should be easy to skim, so people can quickly find the section that holds the key to their question.
Additionally, including subheads makes reading that content even easier, giving quick answers before going even further in depth.
This gives your audience control over how they consume the content. If they just want the basic steps, they can quickly find the section with what they need and check the subheadings for the basics. If they want detailed information, they can read the text that follows.
4. Do Your Research
This is something we can’t stress enough.
Ensuring your content is factual, and can be backed up, is essential in maintaining the trust of your audience.
False claims are a surefire way to break the trust you’ve been building and ruin your credibility!
Including stats or research data can be a powerful way to make a piece of content more relevant to your readers and is an easy way to show them that you value them enough, to be honest.
Whenever possible, link back to non-competitive sources to back up your claims to add validity to your article and maintain the relationship you’ve built with your audience.
5. Optimize Your Content
Ensuring your content is optimized goes far beyond keywords.
While relevant, high-performing keywords are important for the success of your content, there are some other aspects you need to include that will ensure it gets in front of the right people at the right time.
For example, you’ll want to ensure you know exactly who you’re writing to, so you can create content they can identify with and will enjoy reading.
Some other things to consider when you optimize your content include
- Keep it easy to read by adding lists and charts
- Add a photo that’s relevant to your content
- Link back to previous articles or relevant pages within your own site
- Write informative, long-form content
3 Things to Avoid In Your Content Writing
How content is written changes over time, and some practices that were once commonplace in the content writing space are now a sure way to sink your content before it has a chance to get in front of your readers.
While some things are more important to exclude from your writing than others, there are three key aspects you should be careful to avoid in your content.
1. Avoid Keyword Stuffing
‘Keyword stuffing’ was a popular practice when optimization first became an important aspect of online content.
Essentially, people would identify a keyword that was relevant to their content with good metrics and would proceed to stuff it into their articles everywhere they could.
For example, if their keyword was ‘blog,’ their content might read something like:
“In this blog, we’re talking blogging and how to make your blog stand out in the competitive blogging space so your blog can get more views than other blogs.”
Talk about an exhausting reading experience!
Google now ranks content based on readability as well as keywords, so stuffing them in to please the algorithm won’t be helpful and makes your content difficult to read.
Instead, add your keyword where it fits naturally, and prioritize the quality of your article over hitting a keyword count.
2. Avoid Walls of Text
As we mentioned above, readability is key, and your content writing should be easily consumed by anyone who clicks through to it.
Breaking up your content is a great way to make your articles easy to read and skim through.
If people open your article and find a big wall of text, they’re going to have a hard time finding what they’re looking for, resulting in them bouncing off your article in record time!
Split your paragraphs into small, easily digestible sections. This will help break up your page and make it less daunting when people open it.
Make this even easier by adding lists where you can, making highly desirable information easy to find as people quickly scroll through your content to ensure what they’re looking for is there.
3. Don’t Go Off on Tangents
Everything that goes into your article should be relevant and have a point.
If you get sidetracked and begin telling a story that doesn’t clearly relate back to the purpose of the post, you’re going to lose readers fast.
With the rise of technology and social media, the average attention span has dropped significantly, and if you fumble through your article without getting to the point quickly enough, your audience won’t hesitate to go back and try another blog post instead.
Make sure everything you write adds to your content in a meaningful way, and ensure it always links back to the purpose of the article.
Content Writing Tips & Tricks
Writing can be difficult, and not every article comes together in one fluid motion.
In fact, most don’t!
If you’re having trouble getting started or are concerned your content isn’t at the level you hoped, here are some tricks you can try to make it easier!
Write First and Edit Later
When you first sit down to write a piece of content, the best thing you can do is simply start writing.
Don’t judge what’s landing on the page.
Don’t fret about spelling.
The first draft is never about getting the content perfect. It’s about getting it on the page and letting the ideas flow to give yourself a roadmap to follow later.
You’ll be surprised how many ideas come up as you go through to expand it afterwards.
Don’t Publish it Right Away
Give it at least 24 hours before you review it and decide it’s ready to be added to your site.
This gives you time to have secondary ideas, content revolutions, or remember things you forgot to add that you wanted to include. You’ll be better able to tweak the final product before publishing and feel more confident in the outcome.
Make Content Writing Easy With IMP Digital
While anyone can write content, it takes a unique skill set (and time!) to write content that’s entertaining, fits the brand, and hits the mark from start to finish.
Make your content writing easy by including a marketing agency like IMP Digital in your business strategy. Our team of highly skilled professionals can make running your business easy! Put your focus where it’s most effective, as our agency manages everything behind the curtain.
We’ve worked with many businesses across various industries, including medical technology, home and backyard living, and local customer service companies.
If you’re ready to amp up your content without having to take the time to write it yourself, including IMP Digital in your strategic plan, can be the answer.
Contact us, or book a discovery call to find out more!