Although it only recently became an imperative for most companies who operate both online and offline, content marketing has always been the no.1 method for selling products/services and getting people to fall in love with your brand. It’s how you attract new potential leads and convince them that you are worth listening to. Apart from that, great content builds trust. It helps people/brands showcase their knowledge with the world and position themselves as leaders in their industry.
Brands like MOZ, Buffer and GrooveHQ have a firm grasp on this concept. They truly understand how to achieve success via content marketing by showcasing their expertise on The Web. Buffer’s content writing team excels at this game. They have a team of highly qualified writers, marketing specialists, social media and SEO experts working together to produce something that speaks volumes to their current and potential customers.
Content marketing has been very kind to me. Above everything else, it gave me the luxury to actually make a living out of telling stories. Apart from that, it gave me the chance to work with a lot of successful entrepreneurs and help them present their work to their target audiences in a best possible fashion. To me, it doesn’t get any better than this. I truly love what I do. I find my work both challenging and exciting.
Being active in this industry for quite some time now, I’ve met a lot of people who make their bread and butter solely from creating content for all sorts of different clientele. Some of them create content for productivity apps, others write blog posts for SEO companies. Some of them even do both. There are people out there who, much like myself, can write as experts in almost every niche.
Although different in most ways, when it comes to their work, many of these versatile content writers believe in the same set of principles as I do.
Over the years, working and mingling within this industry, I came to an understanding that there are 4 things every niche content writer has to have if he or she wants to make a name for himself or herself in this highly competitive world:
1. A Storytelling Mentality
The whole content writing process is based on the structure of storytelling. I’m not talking about the one-upon-a-time narrative, but the use of storytelling structural elements that help people relate to certain scenarios.
If you know how to present your story so that it relates to people and their daily, weekly or monthly troubles, then you have no problem with producing content for any niche, no matter how entertaining or boring it may be.
As I mentioned before on this blog, people love stories. They help convey messages, purpose and emotion as well. Like Jonathan Gottschall, a very famous marketer, once said: “A story is a trick for sneaking a message into the fortified citadel of a human mind.”
People are different. Not all of them are in love with the same story structure. Some like reading thrillers, others comedies, etc. It’s your job to figure out which structure will work for which audience.
To be good at content writing, you must understand what the people reading your content are really interested in reading. Are they looking for advice, specific knowledge or just entertainment? A good content writer knows how to engage his audience. He knows how to adapt his style and tone so that his content finds its way to those for whom it’s being made for in the first place.
2. A Never-Ending Thirst For Knowledge
Your content, especially your blog articles, should be perceived as something valuable in the eyes of your targeted audience. You should write stuff that is rich with content that solves problems for your people. Apart from that, you should sometimes include a clear call to action. Sometimes, not all the time.
Without some level of engagement, content is rarely successful, so it’s of crucial importance that you, as a content writer, figure out your audiences intent.
This is the tricky part. Most of us professional content writers end up taking on all sorts of different clients who operate in a field that is not quite familiar to us.
In order to provide quality content for my clients who compete in all sorts of different industries for all sorts of different customers, I always have to be one step in front of the competition and provide unique value. Apart from writing, this is probably the most important part of my job.
3. Basic Understanding of SEO
Before you start to lose your mind and look at the different professions in which you can make a name for yourself, you should probably first read the headline of this segment one more time. It says “basic”, which means that you don’t need to know everything there is to know about SEO.
Understanding the basics of SEO is essential if you are interested in increasing the visibility of your website and boosting your rankings to the first couple of pages of search engines. As I wrote in one of the previous articles here, good SEO is a pretty mystical term. The sole purpose of SEO is to make it easy for people to stumble upon your site. A good SEO strategy is and should be oriented to improving your website rankings.
Writing good SEO content isn’t hard if you have a good strategy. Before I go on and publish any article on my blog, I always first focus on:
1. Creating a unique and interesting title for my post.
2. Adding the right keywords in the text.
3. Solving a problem for my readers, impressing them with my expertise.
4. Adding subheadings to my content, so that readers could skim it if they want to.
5. Enriching my work by linking some parts of it to great external sources.
6.Adding attractive images, videos, slides and infographics etc.
7. Making sure that the post is mobile friendly.
4. A Strong Social Presence
Although this last thing isn’t of crucial importance, having a strong social presence could significantly help you with the production and distribution of your niche content writing. Having a recognizable name on social media, with a lot of good and active followers, can give you the power to amplify any type of content in a matter of seconds. If you’re recognized as an influencer or an expert in your field on SM, you can basically sell anything.
Social media is huge today. Everyone is one it. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, Pinterest – these are enormous and highly profiled networks where you can find your targeted audience and directly communicate with them. Apart from getting people to click on your work and increase the number of visits to your or your client’s website, social media can also be seen as a place where you can get valuable feedback on your work and mingle with a lot of big names from your industry.
In the world of content marketing, most people find their customers or clients through search and social. While search is far more important than social, SM has been pretty good for most brands. Achieving success on SM is far easier than on Search, especially if you have a huge following.
Freelancer or not, it is of crucial importance to you that you build a big and active following of names who would be interested in consuming all sorts of different products and services that you’re selling. The more active you’re on social, the more people will be likely to recommend your work and thus help your business get more leads.
Thank you for reading this post. If you have anything to add or ask, feel free to write it down in the comments section below.
This is it for now,
See you soon,
Goran @ AltusHost B.V.