What types of problems does your branded content have?
Do some people criticise it for not having enough detail, or relevance or supporting data?
Do others find it too lengthy, or too dull?
Or do some find its layout difficult or frustrating to navigate?
Maybe you have no idea what's wrong with your content; all you know is that it's getting high bounce rates, and that it's suffering from a lack of comments, engagements and shares.
So what's wrong with your content?
You know it's relevant, informative and valuable. The knowledge you're sharing can change lives! Why can't your ideal customers see that?
It could be that its structure is appealing to all the wrong people, or to not enough people, causing them to navigate away before they have a chance to absorb all the wonderful things you're sharing there.
Let's find out.
Get More Engagement with your Branded Content
We all know that Content is King, and that publishing and sharing the best and most relevant branded content in your market will crown your business with Magnificent Mindshare.
There's a tonne of advice available for writing the best content; however, today I wanted to share some targeted advice with you.
It's about writing content that appeals to all your readers, from Skimmers to Examiners. You see, even though your ideal customers (your target audience) all have some very important things in common, they're probably very different when it comes to their reading preferences.
In fact, some of them don't even want to read content—they want to absorb it through audio/visual and digital platforms. We'll talk about those people another time. For today, let's focus on the people who are actually opening your blog posts, webpages, articles and emails with the intention of reading them.
- Detail for Examiners. Though they make up a small minority, there is a segment of your audience that will read every word of every piece of content you publish. For these folks, you must ensure that your data is accurate; that your grammar, punctuation and spelling are flawless; and that you offer plenty of relevant detail.
- Inverted Pyramid and Pain-Naming for Honeymooners. Lots of readers only show commitment for first (and occasionally second) paragraphs. They will determine if it's worthwhile to read on, refusing to commit time to anything that's not highly relevant to them. For these readers, ensure they know, in the first sentence, that you're writing to them. Additionally, tell them what the piece of content is about as soon as possible. These types are not going to appreciate attempts at building setting or suspense.
- Eye stops for Super-Skimmers. A larger number of audience members are Super-Skimmers, meaning they scan content for major points, deciding if those points are relevant to them. If they determine that yes, they stand to benefit from any single point, they will read more in that section of content. For these types of readers, include headlines that are highly representative of the content being presented, as well as bullet points with crucial words in bold, expanding upon each point with highly relevant information.
- Glance Points for Non-committal Skimmers. These are the folks who will spend the least amount of time with your content. They barely open it long enough to glance at what catches their eye, and then they're moving on. Infographics, pull-out quotes, images and large, bold type are the only things with a chance of getting their attention. Accomplish this, and you will not only gain their interest, you will gain their respect (because few brands have been able to stop them in their tracks…and they will remain fully aware of the feat you have accomplished).
As you work to develop your branded content for a wider market appeal, you're undoubtedly going to encounter some difficulties at first.
How to be focussed whilst presenting broad points?
How to appeal to the fastidious reader AND the skimmer?
The answer is texture. Present main points with large, bold type and break it down, in detail, in paragraphs below those points. Use at least two different sizes of headings and bold type so that skimmers can prioritise how they will focus their attention and digest content. Every piece of content should be a variety pack: giving every type of reader the simple option of flying over or diving in.
With practice (and by asking for feedback from readers), you will learn to appeal to most preferences in your target audience, whilst avoiding encroachment on others. And as you develop your branded content's appeal, you will gain a sense of what types of readers are visiting your blog, webpages, social media pages…and can then create a tailored lean on each type of content delivery system.
Your branded content can be responsible for building brand awareness, trustworthiness, expert status, visibility, credibility and so much more. Or it can exist in a vacuum. What will it be?
See how other entrepreneurs and brand builders are using branded content to build their brands by joining the Brand Builders Club—where freedom-focussed business owners are networking, joint venturing, masterminding, strategising and so much more. Email [email protected] and let us know that you're interested in learning more about the club. We’ll see if it's right for you.