Of course, Content Creation is one of the uttermost skeletons that completes the online web presence. And if you’ve known me online for any length of time, you’ll know that content creation is one of my best characters. But, how do I do it?
For this reason, this is why I was so excited to write about this topic today! For instance, as a little boy, I used to read one book after another. While at the same time, writing journals after journals. So, for sure, the content creator path has always been part of my life.
And whenever I introduce myself as an online blogger, people can sometimes do one of the following;
- look at me with a puzzled look on their face,
- ask “what does that mean?” or
- ask me every question under the sun to find out what it entails as a job.
After I explain what I do and how I help bloggers and business an answer can usually be “Hey, I need someone like that!”
Especially, from online brand owners on how to grow their online presence through content marketing. And that’s why I’m here.
Who is a Content Creator?
So first, I wanted to run through exactly what content creators do – the same explanation I try to give everyone. But, first, where is the first place you go for expert advice or an answer to a burning question?
And my guess is Google (or your preferred Search Engine). You’re not alone — Google alone answers over four billion search queries every day. Particularly, when you enter a question into the search bar, (those links that appear in your search results are content).
Content Creators are persons or someone who is responsible for the contribution of information to any media and most especially to digital media. Usually, they target a specific end-user/audience in specific contexts.
A content creator can contribute any of the following:
- Blog Posts
- Email Newsletters
- Social Media Copy (one of my favorites!)
- Video Marketing/Editing
- Publishing eBook
- Graphic Design
- and more!
They can also create offline content such as brochures, client packets, and so on, but today, we’ll be focusing specifically on digital content creation.
What is Content Creation?
Content Creation is the process of generating topic ideas that appeal to your buyer persona, creating written or visual content around those ideas, and making that information accessible to your audience as a blog, video, infographic, or other formats.
Content is a large part of your everyday life. It’s hard to avoid, but why would you want to? Content keeps us informed, answers our questions, entertains us, makes us smile, guides our decisions, and more.
Content helps you attract, engage, and delight prospects and customers, bring new visitors to your site, and ultimately, generate revenue for your company. In other words, if you’re not creating content, then you’re behind the curve.
Why is Content Important?
Content creation is the ultimate inbound marketing practice. When you create content, you’re providing free and useful information to your audience, attracting potential customers to your website, and retaining existing customers through quality engagement.
You’re also generating some major ROI for your company, as these content marketing stats demonstrate:
- Content marketing brings in 3X as many leads as traditional marketing and costs 62% less.
- SMBs that use content marketing get 126% more leads than those that don’t.
- 61% of online purchases are the direct result of a customer reading a blog.
- Companies that publish 16+ blog posts per month get 3.5X more traffic than those that post four or fewer posts per month.
Content equals business growth. So, let’s get started with your content strategy.
We, marketers, are busy. We don’t have time to waste on inefficient systems. That’s why we create processes for everything we do. We devise a system, roll it out, tweak it until it works, then repeat that system over and over to generate the results we want.
Think about every marketing campaign you’ve ever done — webinars, autoresponders, surveys. Each of them had a process. Content creation is no different.
Follow these steps to create content, remove the guesswork, and allow for more creative mental space.
1. SEO Research
Creating your buyer persona likely gave you some ideas about what topics to write about and what questions your audience might have, which is a great start. Now, you need to confirm if those ideas can apply on a bigger scale to a larger audience. Sure, it would be great to write a blog post directed toward a single person, but, boy, would it be a waste of energy.
SEO research — a.k.a. keyword research — will show you the search volume of a specific keyword phrase and whether it’s worth the investment of creating a piece of content around it.
A good way to go about keyword research is to write down some questions that your persona might have based on their obstacles and goals. Then, perform some keyword research around those queries to see if enough people are searching for them.
A rule of thumb is to target keywords that are attainable, meaning that have a monthly search volume (MSV) and keyword difficulty that corresponds to your domain authority. Trying to target high volume (read: highly competitive) keywords when you’ve just started blogging won’t pan out too well for you.
Now that you’ve determined which keywords to target, it’s time to brainstorm some content ideas. HubSpot’s research shows that the best way to organize content is through topic clusters. Meaning you create a long-form, comprehensive pillar page based on a keyword that then links to content you’ve created on related subtopics (think blog posts).
To illustrate the point, it looks like this. The topic cluster model makes brainstorming so much easier because now you have a structure to follow. You can use your main keyword to create a pillar piece that covers that topic in-depth. Like … say a guide to content creation.
Then, you can create shorter pieces of content. For example, infographics, blog posts, templates — that help your audience dive deeper into the topic and target long-tail keywords.
And if you’re stumped for ideas, you might want to consider looking for inspiration from books you’ve read, industry studies, your competitor’s sites, or related searches on SERPs. Once you have all of your ideas down, you can develop your editorial calendar and start creating.
I’m going to talk about the writing process because … well, that’s what I do.
Your specific content creation strength might be videos or graphics or podcasts. Whatever it is, the creation process follows some pretty similar guidelines:
- Write to your persona. Use their voice, their euphemisms, even their humor to construct a piece that resonates.
- Use titles, meta descriptions, and other teasers to compel your audience to read your content. Put the benefit of your content right in the title to let them know why they should read it.
- Create something unique. Don’t simply regurgitate the information that’s already out there. Infuse a unique style or cite new research to emphasize your points.
- Stick to one idea and use your content to reinforce it. Don’t confuse your reader by going on tangents or trying to explain multiple semi-related topics in a single piece.
- Stay true to your voice. Don’t try to impress your audience with eloquent prose or an expansive vocabulary if they don’t speak that way.
- Be concise and clear. You want your audience to relate to you and derive value from your content … and not have to sift through jargon or confusing metaphors.
The way you edit your (or others’) work is a very subjective process. You may want to edit as you go, or you might wait a few days and review the work with fresh eyes. You might care a great deal about grammar, or you might aim for a more colloquial piece.
Either way, there are a few things that should definitely look out for as you refine your content, like active voice, clear language, short sentences, and plenty of whitespaces. Consider having a colleague or manager review your work, too.
Now that your content is ready, you’ll need to put it somewhere that people can access it. A content management system (CMS) is software (like WordPress) that hosts digital content. Allowing you to display it on your website (or anywhere else on the web).
The benefit to a CMS is that it connects all of your content and stores it in one place. So, you can easily link to a landing page in your blog article or insert a content offer in an email. Not only that, but you can analyze the results of all the content you created for a specific campaign (which can help with content audits).
Additionally, a CMS saves you from having a disjointed content marketing system. For example, CMS Hub is home to many blogs, where you get access to all of our great content and useful free offers.
Publishing content is as simple as clicking a button. So, why include a section on it? Well, because it’s not always that simple. Yes, you can publish your content immediately after uploading, or you can maximize its impact by waiting for an optimal time.
If you’re just starting out, then clicking publish right away probably won’t impact your audience too much. But if you have committed to a regular publishing schedule, like delivering a new post every Wednesday, your audience will expect to see posts published on Wednesdays.
Something else to keep in mind is to publish according to trends or time-sensitive events. For example, if you create content about national holidays or current events, then you’ll want to publish those at specific times.
A CMS will allow you schedule posts for a future date and specific time, so you can click, schedule, and forget.
Which are the Best Content Creation Tools?
While a CMS will help you manage your content, it won’t help you create it. That’s where content creation tools come in handy.
These are especially useful if you’re artistically impaired, like me, or if you don’t have the capacity to hire help. From GIFs to infographics, these content creation tools will help you look like a professional, regardless of what kind of content you’re making.
Keep in mind, that content exists everywhere, but its success relies on your ability to adapt it to the medium on which it lives. One size does not fit all when it comes to posting on different mediums — or the platforms within those mediums, for that matter.
Social media content varies from blog content, which is different than website content. So, you need to know how to tailor your creation to reach your audience where they are.
By all means, content creation is an iterative process that pays off tremendously with your audience. Once you have the content creation process down, you’ll be able to generate creative work. And that not only delights your audience but also grows your business.
But, you wouldn’t start building a house without a blueprint, a sculpture without a sketch, or a company without a mission statement. So, there should be no content creation without a plan. Otherwise, you risk getting derailed from your objective.
A content strategy includes everything from brand and tone to how you will promote your content and eventually repurpose it.
Finally, it’s my hope that the above-revised guide on content creation was helpful to you and your copywriting team.
But, if you’ll need additional support or help, please Contact Us. You can also share your questions and additional thoughts in the comments section below this blog. Below are more related and useful topic links;
- Inbound Marketing | Everything you Should know
- eBook Writing | 10 Steps to Start Earning on Amazon Kindle
- Amazon Kindle | Now with a Built-in Adjustable Front Light
- Grammarly App | How to Use the Free Writing Assistant
- WordPress | Why I use it to Build Sites & Recommends it
For all our advice about how to approach SEO when creating content, check out on the eBook about SEO 101 for the Content Marketer.