3 March 2016
Good content should answer questions, educate, inspire, solve and be easily shared. In other words: it must close gaps in your audience’s mind – and guide them to the next stage with you.
Bring together the most passionate and exceptionally creative people you can find. Tap into your existing pool of employees, in creating good content your aim is to tap into the expertise of those around you. The major premise of writing is to prove your expertise. There is no point tasking the showroom assistant with writing your monthly blog, when, its the designers, founder, or managing director who have the knowledge and expertise, and can draw on their experiences to write compelling articles to the buyers and specifiers, who are likely to visit your site. Trust your team, give them ownership over content creation and then allow them to flourish.
What do you know about your audience’s context?
Think about some scenarios where your audience may need or want your content. In each scenario, what are their emotions and state of mind? What are they doing, and where are they? What about their device and environment?
Where does your audience fall on the continuum?
Pick a handful of scenarios and determine where they fall on the audience continuum. If they need a lot of guidance, place them near the “A” end. If they’re already your most loyal customers, they should be firmly at “Z.” Somewhere in between? Find the range that seems most appropriate.
How can our content address this stage of the continuum?
At the “A” end of the continuum, your audience is probably unaware of the need for your product or service – and they may not even know your organization. Your content must disrupt their status-quo thinking. Your “Z” audiences, however, may want your latest special offers, deep-dive demos, reviews, product comparisons and selection advice. If the audience falls somewhere in the middle, offer a mix of “why” and “how” content.
Most high-end interior brands should begin content marketing efforts by blogging. Resist your tactic-first (“this would make a great video!”) impulses. Instead, consider your audience, their stage and your message. If video (or email marketing or your blog or a case study) is the best approach, go for it – but let the audience and context inform the decision. Use the most appropriate platform to both deliver this content.
How will you audience be guided to find this new content from organic search? A tweet or status update? Paid search? An offline tactic? It’s critical to create continuity between these “inward paths” and your content.
Your content should answer questions, educate, inspire, solve and be easily shared. In other words: it must close gaps in your audience’s mind – and guide them to the next stage with you. There are many ways to mix your content, including original in-house, original third-party (licensed) and curated content. While the ideal situation would be to have the majority be original content, that is simply not always feasible. Filling the gaps with licensed and curated content is an excellent alternative. In fact, an added benefit of featuring third-party content is that it helps trust and credibility with your audience and other influencers.