Quick points on content

Here’s another post from the StartupSmart email course, which I was a contributing writer for. This time on content… enjoy!

Content

Content is the new black. Gone are the days when it was forgotten until a site’s looming launch and lorem ipsum or any other filler text was de rigueur. Content is one of the most important aspects of your website and influences your bottom line. If you haven’t given much thought to it yet, you don’t have to wait until a big redesign or expansion to start. It’s not just about copywriting or words on a page. Content strategy is an emerging area in web design and includes planning, creation, delivery and governance of content.

Everyone now has the capacity to be content producers, and consumers are becoming attuned to accessing remarkable media at their fingertips. Don’t become another unread and uninteresting corporate blog.

TOOLS

Topics

Develop areas of focus for your content early on and relate these back to your business and digital goals. Who are you trying to target? What messages do you want to communicate? What is common ground for your users? What other media do they consume? Research what else is out there and write about something you know and understand. Above all, be useful and offer value.

Audience

Whether you’re B2B, B2C, peer-to-peer or government-focused, create something for your audience that’s engaging. Businesses love case studies. Consumers might want something they can co-create or interact with. Be mindful of who you are targeting and don’t be afraid to make it fun and flippant now and again. Experiment with style and tone – with many sites written in third-person PR speak, a personal and honest account with a single author could be what’s needed for cut-through.

Multimedia

Content comes in many mediums, and variety is the key for a good diet. Blogs, tweets, comments, static site copy, polls, leanly-produced video, podcasts, eBooks, photos, news articles and so forth are all forms that need to be considered. Visually-pleasing infographics seem to be the viral marketer’s love of late.

Content calendars

Magazine editors have long been organising content for their pages months in advance. Time your content around key dates on your calendar so you can be timely and relevant. If the majority of your users are out of the office and offline on public holidays, content that’s published then is likely to go unnoticed.

Aggregation and curation

Two rising stars in content land include aggregation and curation. Despite the similar sounding names, there are differences between the two. Aggregation collates chosen information in one spot and attempts to be definitive – such as Google News. Curation is more selective and specialised, and is often edited by hand. You might not have to spend hours producing content to build your brand – your value could lie in aiding information discovery for your audience.

The last word

When planning your site’s content strategy, don’t forget the basics. These include things like resourcing – who is going to put the content together and what budget you have allocated. Have you tied your content in with your search engine marketing?

Make sure you understand and have skills in writing for the web. RSS feeds, email signup, social media channels and other ways to pull customers back to your site also need to be factored in.

Image source: The Content Wrangler 

One thought on “Quick points on content

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