Are you posting content for content’s sake? Or are you feeling overwhelmed and stuck for content ideas to post to your website and socials? Whichever camp you find yourself in, I call this the ‘content trap’ and over the course of this post, I hope I’ll be able to help you lift yourself out of it.
The Content Trap
It can be hard not to compare your business’s content performance when you find yourself scrolling through your social feeds and seeing plenty of other accounts consistently posting high-performing content that attracts lots of interaction. How do they do it? you think to yourself.
With so much conflicting advice on what, when and how often you should be posting flying around it’s no wonder why people either find themselves posting as much as possible or giving up altogether. Suddenly it becomes all about playing slave to ‘the algorithm’, finding that magic formula or having an aesthetic that will catapult your brand to your target audience and make you a millionaire.
I’ve seen both sides of the coin. Working for an agency where we had long-standing content creation retainers which saw us digging deep to come up with novel ideas whilst posting at volume each week to varying degrees of success. On the other end of the spectrum, I come across many business owners who know they could be posting more but don’t have the time, resources or know-how to do it effectively.
More ≠ Better
The saying ‘quality over quantity’ is definitely true when it comes to posting content whether it’s in the form of blogs, social media or anything other medium. If anything, posting every day could actually be harmful to your performance. It dilutes the informative and entertaining content and can annoy your target audience who may feel pestered by too many updates.
It may also be totally unnecessary if your audience isn’t actually engaged with social media or your website in the first place. After a recent survey of one of my client’s audience preferences, we found that their target demographic doesn’t actually spend a whole lot of time on social media, so we reduced the number of posts to enhance overall quality. When we took a look at what was working we found that email marketing was their most successful channel alongside organic website visits via the many helpful blogs on the website. So naturally we refocussed our efforts and found we achieved better outcomes.
What Makes Content ‘Good’?
Good content resonates with your target audience or ‘ideal buyer’. It can inform, entertain or comfort them and align with their values. It adds value to their day or even their lives – whether it’s teaching them something new or just making them laugh, sometimes it’s not that deep!
Having an acute understanding of your target audience – their pain points, goals and preferences should be the first point in establishing your content strategy. If you’re not sure, conducting audience and keyword research is a good place to start. Find out which platforms they hang out on, the type of content they enjoy consuming and how best you can tailor your content to appeal best to them.
Good content is well thought out – rather than thrown together to appease a perceived algorithm or try to cheat search engines – in fact, doing this could actually hinder your success rather than heightening it as per all the news of Google Helpful Content Updates you may have heard.
Tips for Escaping the Content Trap
- Establish content pillars but don’t make them the be-all and end-all of your content. Content pillars can be thought of as aspects or categories that inform your posts. Examples include testimonials, top tips, sustainability, and behind-the-scenes.
- Do some research – ask your audience what they would like to see, look at what works and doesn’t for your competitors, and look at any keyword opportunities available to you.
- Aim for quality over quantity – avoid posting for content’s sake. That includes national awareness days. Why would your driving school followers care about National Ice Cream Day? If it’s not relative, informative or engaging then don’t post it.
- Educate yourself on the different types of search intent. Search engine queries can be informational, commercial, transactional, or navigational. Create content for these types of searches in relation to your business, products or services.
- Experiment with different mediums – could you try short-form video, user-generated content, posting and responding to interactive stories?
- Create a plan – I love using Trello for this but you could also just use a spreadsheet or Word document. Having one place to record your ideas, write copy and link images will give you the nudge you need to escape the content trap.
- Delegate when you need to – play to your strengths and outsource anything else whether it’s graphic design, copywriting or email marketing.
If you find yourself in a content trap or are looking to outsource any element of your digital marketing, why not have a look at my services and get in touch for an informal chat to see if I can help?