How to leverage your words for the greatest payoff.
Chances are, you have to write on the job. Whether it’s drafting a blog post, curating social media accounts, updating your business website, or managing internal communications, you deal with content on the daily. Here’s how to leverage your content for the greatest payoff.
Be literal in your headlines. Resist the urge to write clever headlines or email subject lines – you will get more traffic when you tell the reader exactly what to expect. Your content will surface higher in searches when you use important keywords, not adjectives, in your headlines, and your emails will generate a higher open rate.
Brevity is key. In addition to literal language, keep things brief. Short headlines and email subject lines have greater impact. Don’t include every keyword under the sun; rather, be specific and succinct.
Be clear in your ask. Register. Click the link. Please retweet. These are all calls to action. Don’t shy away from telling your audience to do something. Content with a clear directive is always more successful than beating around the bush.
Embed media and links. Including images and videos in your content drives more traffic. Select the smallest file size available, and fill in the titles and descriptions in your content management system.
Heed the 80/20 rule. To build community and trust while also being efficient with your time, curate and promote content 80 percent of the time and create original content 20 percent of the time. Similarly, a good rule of thumb when managing your social network accounts is to post four “gives” to every one “ask.” For example, post links to interesting articles (including your own), retweet content, and comment on posts and tweets. For every fourth or fifth engagement, post information about your company, client or product, or include a call to action.
Be efficient. Schedule out your creative content in one sitting using an app like Hootsuite, and add curated material throughout the week as you notice interesting content in your feed. Social media doesn’t have to eat up your time, unless you are addicted to baby goat videos, and then you’re on your own.
Publish content frequently. Think about how you can serialize or repurpose an article. Ask others to contribute content. Keep in mind that text can be short; just make sure it delivers value to your audience.