So it’s time for a reality check: the days where you were limited to shopping at Bettie Joe’s Toy Mart or Al’s Superstore for your son’s favorite action figures have long since passed. With the rise of the information age hundreds of businesses and services are a click away from most consumers, which means that if you run a business or website you can’t bank on being “the only place in town” to guarantee traffic anymore. This new age of abundant opportunities means that you’re going to have to offer some quality to bring in the masses, and on the internet that means good content.
So how can you create content that will trump the excellency of your competitors? Here’s a few tips to help you stand apart from the other websites that crowd the world wide web:
1. Update your definition of greatness
That idea you brewed up with your ‘bros’ last weekend may have sounded awesome when you were throwing back cheap tacos at three in the morning, but what are internet users really looking for? Do your research so you can sport some credibility in the content you write. In other words, know your topic! Users can recognize someone who knows what they’re talking about as opposed to some hack who threw together a blog post in a few minutes.
Excellent content sticks with people, and nothing makes your content sticky like information that people can act upon. Remember how quickly you zoned out when your professor told you “this part isn’t going to be on the test, but I’m going to cover it anway”? When content contains “actionable information”, the chances that users will retain and share what they find will increase exponentially.
2. Lose your ego
Being awesome doesn’t guarantee that users will come flocking to your site just to bask in its glory- in today’s world promoting your content has become paramount, so if you’ve been sitting around waiting for someone to notice you then you should probably lend an ear (or an eye, rather) to the following:
Market your content BEFORE you write it! Remember how you were salivating in the movie theatre when you finally got to see that awesome sequel you had been waiting for all year? Why were you bursting with anticipation? Someone “teased” you with short clips from the film months prior to build that anticipation! Planning how you will promote your content, including giving your fans/users/consumers a date to expect, will drastically improve the attention your new content gets when you release it. You may even consider consulting the masses by means of survey or contacting major “influencers” in your specific field to help determine what your new content will be and when to release it, because timing is just as important as getting the word out.
Notice any reoccurring themes here? Planning and action are key to good content. Users hop on the web so that they can do something: from buying a product to finding a funny video to share, so plan to provide content worthy of their efforts! Make your content easy to access with a look and feel that will have people linking to you from all over the internet!