You want to create content that counts but don’t know where to start? We’ve got you covered.
French philosopher and writer Voltaire once said, “The secret of being boring is to say everything”.
In other words, say too much and nobody will listen. It becomes noise. At least that is my take on it. I can’t ask him. He died rather a long time ago in 1778.
So how about we look at it another way?
The secret of creating content that counts and being interesting is to say very little – but with impact.
Isn’t that what everyone wants to achieve? Marketeers, brands, businesses, CEOs communicating to their teams? Being understood is everything. It can lead to potential new clients, getting teams motivated and growing audiences.
But how can you achieve impact through content when the sheer volume of words out there overwhelms us.
Did you know that the average person speaks 7000 words a day and sends 85 texts? Another fun fact – there are 150,000 messages sent per minute across Facebook and roughly 500 million tweets exchanged daily (BEM – before Elon Musk).
That’s an astonishing level of communication that’s happening around us daily.
But it all just becomes an endless sea of noise. And it’s not stopping anytime soon.
So as a company, how do you make your “noise” or content count? How do you make your messaging stand out? Essentially, how can you be noticed?
When used correctly, words pack enormous punch.
Top 10 tips to making your content count
1. Keep it short and sweet.
Audience fatigue is real. Reign in the volume information you are putting out there and be clear on the simple message you want to communicate to your audience. Focus on a single message or purpose. Don’t be tempted to try to get a number of different points across in the message. One message = one major point.
2. Don’t use big words to look intelligent.
Keep it simple. Why use “conundrum” when “problem” will do? It’s the first rule of thumb in journalism. Writing is not about you showing off your smarts. The aim is to be read by as many people as possible – whether they are clients, employees or an online audience. Using shorter words doesn’t mean you are dumbing down the message but simply that you are communicating your ideas as clearly and effectively as possible.
3. Think like a journalist
What topics do you think your readers would like to know about? Your communication needs to inform, educate or entice your various audiences – investors, customers, potential clients – so write what they would be interested in from an industry perspective and your expertise, not what you’re keen to wax lyrical about.
4. Know your audience
If you’re writing to your employees congratulating them all for a win, you would use less formal language than you would to stakeholders. If you’re writing a blog, make sure it reflects the company’s personality or voice.
5. Write a snappy headline
A good headline is a short headline that entices, captivates and sparks interests. This is more important than the rest of your content because without it, your audience won’t read on.
6. Three Second Rule
Three seconds is all you have to keep readers engaged after reading the headline so make your first sentence really count. It’s called a hook in journalism. Make it pop.
7. Find your unique voice
Writing on behalf of the company or the CEO, make sure your writing “voice” aligns with the business. Write to your target audience and brand persona.
8. Keep it short
Did we say keep it short? Bulleted lists are a good way to keep sentences short.
Edit and edit again. Spell check it.
10. Know your strengths
If you are not a skilled writer, hire one to do the job for you. Writing well and with clarity is crucial to most businesses. Not everybody possesses the gift of the gab so outsource your writing needs to a digitally savvy, skilled storyteller who can work across a range of platforms.
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