I have been asked many times over the years on how to write quality and engaging content, so I thought I would take the time to put pen to paper (fingers to the keyboard) and give you all some tips on to write good content that people enjoy reading.
So here goes:
1) Know your audience – Are you writing for children, the general public, a specific industry or your Board of Directors? This will determine the tone and style of language you use. If you don’t understand who you a writing for it is almost impossible to gain engagement.
2) Understand the format – since the rise of the digital evolution Content Marketing has become a must for businesses with Blogs, eBooks, Social posts, Whitepapers and let’s not forget website content being just some of the essentials. They all require a different level of detail, expertise and formality. Don’t be too formal on social and equally don’t be overly relaxed if you are delivering a whitepaper as your hard work can easily be dismissed.
3) Research – Do you know the subject matter? If not, research, gain understanding but importantly form your own opinion. Don’t fall into the trap of just delivering facts in a flat tone and importantly avoid just regurgitating somebody else’s content. Digest the facts, how do you (if it is a personal blog) or the company you are writing for relate, feel and prioritise those facts?
4) Structure – It is very easy if you are passionate about the subject matter to go off on a tangent. Plan your content. What do you want to achieve from content? Cast your mind back to when you were at school – does your structure have a beginning, a middle and an end?
5) Check, check and check – Whenever I write content, I leave it overnight and read it the next morning with a fresh pair of eyes. It is easy to become immersed and content blind, so simple errors or a loss of pace or structure can be missed. A bonus is always getting a colleague to read through your content, does it make sense? Is the structure clear? Are there any errors?
One final step I do is to use a readability checker such as The Writer to see how the structure scores using the Flesch-Kincaid scale. It has a large scale and the score you are aiming for will depend on the type of content and the audience you are writing for.
This blog scored 67.2 which is like many of Barrack Obama’s speeches.