5 Top Tips for Shareable Content

If you write, record or snap it, they will come, right? Well, sadly, no, not in most cases. Content creation is growing at an incredible rate and every single day hundreds of millions of photos, videos, updates and stories are created across multiple channels; all competing for space in your news feeds. If you’re serious about growing your business online, then it’s simply not enough to hit the publish button and sit back and cross your fingers that you’ll reach your target audience. The truth is it takes time, effort and a carefully planned strategy to create killer content that readers not only engage with, but share on their own platforms.

The good news is that there are plenty of actionable steps you can take to ensure your updates cut through the chatter rather than tumbleweed into an Internet black hole. Here are our 5 top tips for shareable content.

Tip #1: Know your Audience

It’s important that you mine all of the data available to you via your website, blog and social media insights to get a deeper understanding of your core audience and their interests. This allows you to be more targeted with the content you share and ensure it meets the needs of your ideal target market. If you have an active online community already, make sure you’re engaging and interacting with them whenever possible – either via any email responses received or through your blog or social media comments, as this is a brilliant way to learn more about the burning questions they have. If you haven’t yet developed this then don’t worry, you can delve into other blogs and channels within your industry and read comments there to get a true sense of what the important issues are and start thinking about the solutions you could provide.

Tip #2: Take Time to Plan

For any business, an editorial calendar is an essential tool to visualise and execute your online goals, as well as structure content delivery in a meaningful way.

Understanding your audience; including what motivates them, and what they need to hear from you in order to make a meaningful connection with your brand is vital for your approach to content creation. Your editorial calendar provides a place to generate post ideas and record key topics as well as devise a consistent online presence so you’re reaching that audience at key times.

An editorial calendar gives you a solid framework for being intentional and deliberate about what you share, ensuring you build trust and increase engagement with those most interested in your online content. If you’re serious about growing your business online it’s an important asset to positively improve your share-ability.

Tip #3: Evoke a Reaction

For any business, an editorial calendar is an essential tool to visualise and execute your online goals, as well as structure There have been numerous online studies into the reasons why people like and share specific content online and research indicates that there are typically 4 distinct categories when it comes to getting that all-important click:

  • Positive
  • Awe-inspiring
  • Emotional
  • Surprising

Emotional engagement is therefore a powerful tool to compel readers to share your content. Think about your own content for a minute – does it evoke a reaction in you? Does your content make you feel something? Did you want to laugh out loud, were you shocked by a statistic or inspired by the content and intrigured to find out more?

Chances are if you don’t feel it your audience wont either and it won’t be shared or engaged with. Try to create content that instigates a reaction, ensure your headlines engage the reader and tell personal brand stories to make your piece memorable, engaging and shareable.

However, a word of caution. What’s important here is that at the same time you stay true to your brand. Don’t share something just to be relevant that doesn’t feel on message. Whilst it’s fine to provide entertainment or tap into trends, always make sure it’s appropriate for your channel and feels right for your business.

Tip #4: Offer Value

Openly showcasing the knowledge within your business is a great tool for building trust in your brand. By creating ‘top tips’ and ‘how-to’ style pieces that specifically address the most frequently asked questions among your target audience you can help to make a complex process/concept easier to implement/understand and that offers huge value. As well as increasing social shares, another key benefit is that this will help you to generate more organic traffic from search engines as well.

Where possible, share with your audience real examples and case studies as well as step-by-step instructions of how they can solve a problem or achieve an important goal, so that by the end of the post they have a clear action plan that they can put into place.

Not sure what to write about? You can use key search terms from your website or even Google to help you drill down into this content. Even better – ask your audience! Use your online channels to interact and find out what they want to know more about. Win-win.

Tip #5: Create Visual Appeal

It’s not just quality written content that matters, so does its visual appearance. With so much material competing for our attention it’s important your content looks appealing for people to engage with it and, more importantly, share it.

Take time to organise the text in your posts in a way that’s easily scannable for the reader and doesn’t confuse or overwhelm them. Break up large blocks of copy with subheadings and utilise bullet points and lists. Using imagery or video is also incredibly important. Make sure you take the time to choose something appropriate for the piece. It’s critical that you optimise the size and consider the formatting for the platform you’re posting on. The colours and visual elements that accompany your posts should also tie-in with your brand; remember a consistent look and feel builds trust with your audience and helps your content jump out from the crowded feeds.

Remember, it’s simply no longer enough to create a post and hit the publish button. By taking the time to create a clear content marketing strategy, to know and understand your target market, their wants and needs and to produce material that is both engaging and useful to them; you can boost your business online.

To chat through your own digital marketing requirements, including content marketing strategy, get in touch with the Douglas team

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