There’s an old saying that ‘content is King,’ and despite how impressive visuals have become in a digital era, this is still accurate.
Have you seen a website that’s all flash and no substance? You’re wowed by the various graphics, but there is so little information that you have no idea what you just saw?
Even in the most sensory businesses, good content is still the backbone of how you present your business. Whether it comes in the form of a well-written Instagram caption, a thoughtful blog post, or an informative website, it is this content that explains your business to your potential client base.
So, if content is truly King, then naturally the King must address the people. To me, this means two things:
First, Know Your Audience
How many times have you gone through a website and been left scratching your head, with little to no clue of what you’ve just read? It’s happened to me time and again, and it was one of the main reasons why I started this business.
If you’re writing something purely for B2B purposes, such as a letter to a colleague or an industry newsletter, it may be alright to use very industry-specific language. This material is not intended for a larger audience, and you know that those reading it will understand your point.
Yet when you’re writing anything for the public, the secret code has got to go! Any reader who is not a colleague is going to be confused by your industry jargon, and will find the larger message difficult to comprehend. Rather than spending an entire paragraph explaining an obscure term or concept, it’s always smarter to write something in plain language in order to make sure the reader actually understands what it is that you’re trying to say.
I’ll let you in on a trade secret - this can even apply to industry writing as well! Just because you’re writing for your colleagues, such as in a trade publication or a business letter, you can still write simply and clearly. You may need to use more industry-specific terms, but that does not mean that the work has to be dense and clunky - which is difficult for anyone to navigate, let alone a busy professional.
Remember, if a reader has to run to a dictionary to decipher public-facing content, then they’ve already lost the plot.
Second, Make Sure You Reach Them!
Very early on into starting this business, I realized that one key element was missing. It’s all well and good to write someone a strong piece of content, but if no one reads it then it will not help bring in business.
My colleague Josh Adler put it this way (to use a supremely Canadian example): if you write a piece for a family lawyer in Toronto, who would you rather have reading that article? Is it of more benefit to the lobster fisherman in Nova Scotia who’s casually browsing the internet, or the affluent midtown Toronto couple who’s preparing to separate and will each be searching for counsel? You can write it in a way that both can understand it, but the reader who’s in a position to take immediate action will do so.
The counterpart of great content is a solid digital strategy. Digital strategy allows us to laser focus your content, and can work to ensure we’re targeting your most likely potential client base, rather than readers on the other side of the country (or world even) who will be unlikely to ever use your services.
What excites me most is that my digital strategy team and I work best hand in hand. We can produce a full report that serves as a digital strategy audit, and helps make sure that your existing content reaches its target audience. Then together, we can move forward with a strategic approach to make your new output the best that it can be for your audience. This means optimizing your new content for search right from the get-go, along with incorporating a distribution plan to make sure that it gets before the right eyes. If you’re putting out something that’s completely irrelevant to your reader, well in this world that’s just as great a sin as the boring technical jargon mentioned above.
We would love to work with you on revamping or improving your existing content, and then devising a strategy to ensure that whatever we create together gets where you need it to go.
Remember, content may be King, but that kingdom runs a lot better if you give the people what they want.