It’s simple: The key to good content is good writing. But content is more than just words — more B2B content marketers are seeing the value of interactive approaches such as infographics, videos and animations that incorporate creative design, too.
No matter the content, it all starts with a story, and a story is made up of words. If you’re responsible for producing content at your organization, brushing up on your writing skills will help make it more effective. To get you started, I’ve gathered some tricks of the trade that will help you build strong content on the foundation of a good story.
Be Clear and Concise
“Use simple language. ‘Never use a long word where a short one will do’ is one of George Orwell’s rules of writing. He also cautioned against jargon. If you use corporate speak, which is long-winded and vague, the writing can become pompous and unreadable. It may even suggest to the reader that your words have no substance. Refer to Orwell’s essay, ‘Politics and the English Language,’ for guidance about how to write a sentence. After each sentence, Orwell advised that you ask yourself, ‘Could I put it more shortly?’ Short, simple and meaningful sentences result in crisp and elegant writing.” — Forbes
Think Like a Marketer
“Think of strong writing skills as the foundation of a house: they’re needed and they serve an important structural purpose. You can not, however, live comfortably on a foundation alone. While strong writing is absolutely the bedrock from which everything else springs, good content creation relies upon many other factors as well. These factors include – but are not limited to – things like keyword research, SEO, social media mastery, editorial planning and actual writing style.” — Business2Community
Consider the User Experience
“Having a great idea and writing compelling copy are both vital to interactive storytelling. Providing a clear structure for your information and considering your end-users’ experience is just as critical, especially if you’re conveying complex or nuanced ideas. … Telling a story out loud, the words flow and the structure just sort of happens. With interactive stories, however, you need to provide a clear information architecture to support your ideas. If you don’t, you risk losing your audience to confusion, frustration, or boredom. Many of the concepts from traditional website information architecture apply to interactivity as well.” — Skyword
“Robowriters can’t understand the emotional triggers involved in the purchasing process (at least not yet). As Nestlabs CEO Tony Fadell said: ‘At the end of the day you have to espouse a feeling — in your advertisements, in your products. And that feeling comes from your gut.’
With ever-expanding distribution channels, the need for content has never been greater. As machines move in to fill the void, the world of content will divide into algorithm-assembled, fact-oriented content and human-generated ‘emotional’ content.” — Advertising Age
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