One of the best ways to engage readers is to provide compelling content. However who defines what good content creation is, because it can be a very subjective and reader specific topic. So if that is the case are there still rules of writing that all content writers should be following?
This article explores some of the rules of content writing and presents 16 different strategies that could improve your own content creation process, which are summarised in the infographic created for websearchseo.co.uk at the bottom of this page.
This article however has divided the 16 strategies into three broader categories looking at
- Content Creation
- Content Research
- Content Presentation
One of the key indicators of good quality content creation is that it offers readers valuable information on the topic, preferably delivered by an expert in the field. In order to show you are an expert within your niche area you need to be able to convince your audience of the following three things;
- Your content is current and relevant
- You know from experience what you are talking about
- You have stats and figures to back up your statements.
In order to develop good quality content you need a plan. One which enables you to target specific keywords and build, easy to understand, content around this theme. The first stage in this process is research.
Writing compelling and informative content will nearly always require some level of research and reading on the topic. Your sources of information can be varied, but the more reliable they are and recognised within your niche industry the stronger your own expertise will become.
Wikipedia is not really seen as a credible source because anyone can add anything to the site, although it can often point you in the right direction. Instead try to quote from recognised reports and industries within your niche area.
Managing all the reading and notes can be challenging so some important pointers to remember, that can make life easier are.
- Save and store or bookmark all your sources, this will make it easier when trying to link back to sources or check at a later date that they are still relevant and/or that the website is still active.
- Link to sources within your own writing, so that readers can see the research you have done and if they are interested it will also help them to access further information on the topic.
- Be honest in your writing, if you have used a product or read other reviews on it state that clearly so that readers know.
Style of Writing & Presentation
The way in which your content is presented is often key to keeping visitors engaged with your article. If there is too much text, or the writing is filled with grammar errors then readers can quickly lose interest.
Headlines are a vital part of attracting readers attention, and also headings on the page that engage and attract the readers eye, especially those readers that skim through articles looking for something interesting to stand out.
The rest of the content needs to make the reader feel as if they are having a conversation with you. Some bloggers make the mistake of thinking that as an expert, they have to lecture their reader, or assume that the reader knows nothing about the topic already. At the same time you also have to write assuming that some readers don’t know anything about your subject matter because they have come to you to learn.
Using images is an important part of communicating your ideas, since the human brain processes images up to 6000x faster than written text.
Images also help to break up the often bleak appearance of too much text, and can draw readers into topics that they would have missed otherwise. Especially since the average reader only reads about 20% of the overall content.
The third area which is important to consider when writing compelling content, is to establish your expertise, of the subject matter that you have written about. This way readers will have confidence in what you are saying and will enjoy the content more.
Expertise can be achieved through a number of ways, one that I have already mentioned is about referencing other recognised experts and citing articles from within your own industry or niche area. This is important because readers will also be looking at other sources so if they can relate to names you mention then they know they are in the right place and this will fit with what else they have read on the topic.
However there are other ways in which you can be seen as really knowing your ‘stuff’.
- Support your statements with graphs or charts showing the data.
- Make sure your data is up to date – or clarify your reasons for using older data, for e.g. ‘these were the latest figures from 2013, but there have been no new developments since this date.’
Finally it is also important to remember to link your current article to previous work you have written. Older posts can get lost in the blog roll, and many readers don’t have time to start searching your site.
Use links within your post when you see it could be relevant, and at the bottom of your article, as I have done in this piece. This will hopefully keep readers on your website longer and also ensures that they are reading content that is relevant to their current interest.
Using Comments to expand your conversation
One of the greatest opportunities that you have on blog and websites is the comments feature. Here readers can actively engage with you and contribute to the conversation. It is also a valuable opportunity to explain topics that may be presenting difficulties and to highlight your own level of expertise.
Not every comment you receive might appear to be that useful at first sight, but I created a brief training programme for wealthy affiliate on this topic, which provides practical tips and tricks for dealing with comments that might appear to be a waste of time. The responses you give are vitally important for showing your expertise and continuing to engage with your audience, so rather than delete instead learn the skills to make sure you can reply like a professional. You can read it at this link Managing Website Comments.
16 Strategies for Compelling Content Creation
All of the strategies that I have mentioned so far also form part of the following info graphic, which is reproduced courtesy of WebsearchSEO and lists 16 different strategies that can be used to create more compelling content. They all fall into the three main categories that I have mentioned above but give some further examples of tips and tricks in content creation.
I hope you enjoyed reading this article and I would love to hear any other tips you might have for developing quality content and wish to share with the readers here.
If you are interested in further reading on this website these are some other articles that are linked to this topic and don’t forget to sign up for the newsletter so that you stay up to date with new articles and ideas for content writing.