If You Wouldn’t Read it, Don’t Write it

March 17th, 2015 in Content Marketing 2 minute read

In our technology centred lives, we have developed something of a natural ‘cyber-force field’, capable of filtering out just about anything on the web and within social media that doesn’t quite tick our boxes or meet our very specific tastes and interests. When you retweet something hilarious, do all of your followers find it quite so amusing? Of course not, and if you’re unlucky you might even lose a follower or two in the process.

In fact, the reality is; unless you have an absolute magnet of a headline, a demonstration of top notch expertise, or an image that simply has to be seen, your content risks joining the billions of blog posts and articles that receive little or no interactions. There is an abundance of content out there, so how do you make sure yours doesn’t get lost?

Content is usually skimmed over for a number of reasons. When content is so product centric, it might as well have a link saying now please follow this link to buy the product.

Alternatively, it can happen when organisations are just a little too late to the party, creating a piece of content that has seen some success but watered down and reproduced to a poorer standard and with less applied knowledge in the subject area.

More often than not, it is a combination of both those things and as a result, the content totally misses the mark and doesn’t connect with the target audience.

A brand must first understand themselves and how they are positioned in the market, before attempting to delve inside the minds of those who want to hear what they have to say. The harsh reality of strategy and marketing is:

Competitive Advantage

A lack of understanding of the target audience is all too often the root cause of content failing. Remember, segmenting your target market does not by any stretch of the imagination mean you understand your audience enough to get them to read what you have to say.

The 3 second test of good copy: If you wouldn’t read it, don’t write it.

It sounds simple ‘if you wouldn’t read it, don’t write it’ but creating engaging content that your target audience want to read and share is tricky.

Here are a few examples of content titles and how they could be improved to make sure your content stands out.

Imagine you are a travel company specialising in trips to South America.

10 Reasons to visit South America This Summer

(Very broad, do I have a real reason to click?)

10 Magnificent shots of Chile you won’t believe are real!

(More specific, I feel like I need to test this claim!)

Delicious traditional Brazilian foods

(Interesting, but do I really need to take a look?)

If these Brazilian foods don’t make your mouth water we don’t know what will

(I need to see this, even if I’m not booking a holiday!)

By choosing friendlier words and being more personal, it can be much easier to grab your audience’s attention. The above examples work for the particular example client but wouldn’t work for others. View your own text as part of the user experience and your audience are much more likely to join in with the conversations.

Here at Zeal we take the time to really get to know you and your audience and put together a relevant and engaging Content Marketing strategy. To find out more about our Content Marketing offering please get in touch.

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