WHAT IS CONTENT CREATION? 12 STEPS TO CREATE EFFECTIVE CONTENT
What is Content Creation? Steps to Successful Content Creation
Content creation is simply the practice of selecting a subject and generating topics and ideas around it that will appeal to your target group. It involves the creation of an appealing visual and/or written material around the idea and finally making it accessible for consumption on the different networking channels.
Content is omnipresent in our lives. So you can estimate how much content creation goes on every single day in today’s world. With the emergence of the Net, we have a deluge of content on various topics. Anything you want to know about, you can always go to the internet for solutions. The process of developing that content and bringing it to you for your consumption comprises the entire Content Creation Process.
Take the following examples
You want to know about the specifications of a mobile phone that has newly launched in the market.
Or you wish to receive information on a certain recipe that you want to prepare.
Maybe you want to learn how to create a website of your own.
For all the above queries you go to the web to search for results. The answers that you get in Google or any other search engine in the form of articles, videos, blog posts that answer all of these queries on the SERP pages are what we call Content.
Why is Content considered so important?
Earlier, the importance of content was not very well known. There was a lot of ambiguity surrounding what worked and what did not. Today, businesses no matter how big or small can no longer undermine the importance of quality content as a factor to boost their business.
Content in various forms and formats are an indelible part of our everyday life today. The fact remains, we want to access the content. And why should we not? After all, it is content that keeps us apprised of what is happening around the world in the form of news articles. gives us information regarding our everyday queries and entertains us through innovative engaging ideas and topics.
It has to be noted that more than 70% of people prefer to know about a product or service through quality content rather than advertisements which are solely meant to promote a particular product. This is because content from an organization is an article with in-depth information about the product or service that the user is interested in. The most important characteristic that separates content from traditional advertising is that Content means to educate and inform a target group about a product through detailed information. Advertisements are solely meant to pursue a consumer to invest in a product or service. Therefore, the content remains an integral part of any organization as a means to inform their focus groups about their product.
Content is greatly responsible for the overall impression and goodwill of a company. How you communicate with your target group goes a long way in establishing a positive impact for your brand boosting the overall growth.
Some Statistics to prove exactly how Beneficial Content is for your organization
- Content brings 3x the number of leads as traditional marketing formats and costs 62% less (Hubspot)
- 55% of marketers claim blog content creation is their top priority (Hubspot 2018)
- 47% of buyers viewed 3-5 pieces of content before making a purchasing decision and engaging with a sales rep (Demand Gen Report 2016)
- 36 % of people prefer list-based headlines (Impact 2019)
- 61% of online purchases are direct results of customers reading blogs
From all the above data, it can be deduced that content and a sound content marketing strategy can have a tremendous impact on the overall welfare of a business.
The process of Content Creation
“Make it simple, Make it Memorable, Make it inviting to look at. Make it fun to read.”
The above sentence perfectly sums up what content should be all about. Content should be conversational. should entertain the prospective consumers and bring in new leads.
Contrary to some popular beliefs content creation is an intricate process that takes a combination of factors to produce a high-quality informative piece of an article for consumers. Content creation involves a well-formed strategy and a lot of brainstorming. It also involves a whole lot of technological expertise to yield maximum results. The process is complex but the rewards are enormous.
While creating content a few of its fundamental characteristics should be kept in mind. The rudiments of content are a friendly tone, an active voice, clarity of language, short sentences, simple words and loads of whitespace.
What is whitespace and why is it recommended while creating content?
Whitespace is simply the blank space between the different elements on a page. An ideal webpage is filled with different components of content. Text, Images, Videos, infographics are just some of the elements that comprise a page on the web. Whitespace is the decluttering on a page that houses so many elements of content. It is sort of a breathing room in a page full of information.
The advantage of whitespace is that it prevents the online users and your traffic to get overwhelmed with a barrage of information in the form of different content formats. Whitespace helps in better readability, retention, and comprehension of the topic of your content. It also gives off a clean and disciplined vibe which positively impacts the leads.
12 steps to successful content creation
Determine your Goals
Goal setting is one of the foremost tasks in the content creation process. The importance of SMART goals cannot be emphasized enough in the content marketing process. Therefore it becomes imperative that you set goals that are achievable, measurable and have specificity in them. For example: set a goal for increasing traffic to your blog by 40%. That way, you will know exactly what to do and how to go about achieving that particular target.
Once you have your eyes set on the goal, you have to create content that supports and assists in gaining the numbers you want to achieve within a specified time.
Understand your audience
The core element of any marketing strategy is your audience. Your existing customers and potential leads are focal of any marketing strategy. Creating a buyer persona keeping in mind the habits, tastes, and preferences of your consumer help in creating more relevant content that will directly influence and impact your target group. Having an idea about their age group, their gender, income and the sectors they work in can also come in useful while creating content.
The next step is to brainstorm and jot down ideas for your content. You can get ideas from anywhere, inspiration can strike from within, from your surroundings, from an incident you are witness to. It can come from your team. from the challenges faced by your target consumer. After going through several ideas pick one that is closest to your goal. The approach towards different ideas and topics are different. Remember, driving traffic to a new website is much more difficult than reviewing an already known product on a popular website. Therefore be systematic and write down the steps required to carry out the content creation process.
Keyword search or SEO search are those keyphrases that google recognizes when you write an article based on those words. It helps Google to rank your site accordingly and users can get results from a search engine based on the keywords that you incorporate in your content. The keyword is the most essential element of Search engine optimization. Once you have an idea of what you want to write about and the audience that your writing will cater to, search for keywords for that topic and the search volume (The number of searches per month). SEO involves writing long detailed articles on a particular topic with clarity to appear on the first page of a SERP.
Once you have decided on the keywords you want to use, incorporate those keywords in your blog or writeup. Make sure you include that keyword enough times (up to 3% of the number of total words in the article for google to recognize the utility of your content.
There are several tools present for keyword searches on the web. Ubersuggest, KwFinder, Answer the public, keywords everywhere, Google correlate, Google trends are some of the popular Keyword search tools.
Market research is extremely essential to the process of content creation. It is closely connected to the success of your business. It is only through thorough market research and sampling that you can get a fair idea of who your consumers are and what their demands are. Feedback, Surveys, questionnaires are some very effective market research methods through which you can estimate the demands and expectations of your target group.
Market research is quintessential for the content marketing process of any business entity. In the case of content creation, it is beneficial to carry out market research to get information about brand awareness and to know about your target consumers’ perception of substitutes and competition. It helps in creating content for effective brand positioning of your business.
Analyze the competition in the market
You should never undermine your competition. Look at how they position their products, how they create and update their blogs, what are the elements they incorporate for effective traffic. Get inspired by the good work but try to bring innovation in your own content. Do not emulate, try something new.
Create the content
We now come to the most important aspect of content creation. Whether your expertise lies in Video creation, content writing, web designing or podcasting, always keep in mind that your content should cater to the demands of your target group.
Since you already have a fair perception of who your target group is, use voice that aligns with their sensibilities. Incorporate innovative content, focus on effective storytelling to get your point across. The surroundings around you provide lots of information.
Do not take other’s ideas. work on your own experiences and create content that is unique to your business. the single most important criterion is to write fluidly with simple vocabulary and absolute clarity. If your audience frowns upon a word you use in your content then the purpose of your content is not met with. The reader has to derive value from what you provide to them through your created content.
Take for example:
Swiggy and Flipkart. these are two companies that are creating waves not just for their services but for the fun and entertaining way they interact with their customers through their content. Their target consumers are happy with the way they come up with new content to keep their customers satisfied.
Remember engagement is a very essential component of content creation. Even while reading, if your user can relate to the experiences and anecdotes you share, the voice of your brand, that means your content ideation is successful. Since content creation mainly involves imparting information on a particular topic to derive results in the form of sales, the storytelling is very pertinent in achieving those results.
Creating meaningful content
A prerequisite of creating effective content is to identify which content will be most beneficial to your target consumer along with identifying your consumers’ pain points. Blog posts are a very popular type of content format. They cater to a variety of people interested in fashion, current events, Finance advice, diet tips or meditation, etc.
In the same way, videos and audio are beneficial to people who want tips on exercising or making a recipe for a favourite cuisine or maybe practising a favourite song and its lyrics.
You can always mix the different elements of content and create successful content based on that mix. Be sure to emphasize on the format that is the need for that particular type of content
Employ content creating tools
The proliferation of the internet has ensured that technology advances at the same pace that the internet has. To make your work easier, the internet has a host of content creation tools that help to make your work easier. For example for a content writer, it is not always possible to create a graphic or design. Sometimes after writing content we do make editing errors and tend to miss out on typos, spelling and punctuation errors. All of these discrepancies can now be solved with different tools available at our disposal for optimizing our content before publishing.
Some of the most useful applications that aid in your content creation are
- Grammarly- Spell check, Grammar check, Plagiarism checker (Premium version)
- Wordcounter.net – Spell-checker, keyword density calculator
- Smallseotools – Free plagiarism checker
- Canva – Design app. Ebooks, graphics, logos, Photo collage, Labels, Business Cards, Posters, Instagram Story, images for blogs
- Hemingway app – It is similar to Grammarly. Hemingway has a lot of advanced features like grading a particular topic according to the level of writing, providing suggestions, etc.
- Stencil – Templates, photographs, fonts, icons, graphics, quotes. Stencil is very useful for social media designs.
- Piktochart – Charts and maps, Design, Icons, infographics
- ProWriting Aid – Word explorer, Detailed explanation, Thesaurus features, grammar and spell check,
- Snappa – Banner creations, templates, custom fonts, Graphic editor, Visual editor, Team collaboration, etc.
- Animaker – Multimove, HD resolution support, Record, Video Infographics,
- JetPack and many more.
Publish your content
Social listening, perception of your audience gives you a good idea of what kind of content your focus group will be interested in. When publishing your content keep in mind three very important point
- Prioritize where to publish your content
- How to publish the core message
- What tone to use on which platform
- When to Publish your content
Prioritize where to Publish your content
“Be specific enough to be believable and universal enough to be relevant”
Your target audience is present in different networking channels. But they interact and spend time on some channels more than they do in others. For example, business enterprises send more time on LinkedIn than on Twitter, Young adults and teenagers spend more time on Instagram than on Linked in and other business pages. Therefore, plan accordingly and prioritize which channel to choose first.
How to Publish the core message.
I will give you an example of the same. The different communication channels have different characteristics. Tailor and execute content aligning with the characteristics of your channel. Take, for instance, you want to share a recipe or your new music album. Introduce a snippet of it on your Instagram profile. Schedule a time to publish the entire content on the platform it is supposed to be published on. Notify the same. That way, you get a whole lot of visibility and reach for your content. The core of your message is that recipe. Share it briefly in one platform and link it to the main site. That will, in turn, attract leads and turn them into conversions.
What tone to use on which Platform?
Just like how you share the same content in different platforms, identify the tone of each platform and disseminate your content accordingly. Have a fun engaging way to communicate on Instagram but use a succinct clear formal message if you want to share the same on a Facebook Business page.
When to publish your content
Keep abreast of current affairs and current news articles if they are in any way related to your content. For example, if you have content about a go-to list during a festival, make sure you schedule your content posting at that relevant time. Also, keep an hour every day to manage and schedule your content posting time. It helps in keeping a fixed time so that you don’t miss any updates when you have to publish. be staunch about when to post your content. Your consumers and leads expect you to be consistent. Prepare a routine and stick to it unwaveringly.
Promote through all channels
Promote your content through all the means available to you on the digital platform. Your content might be created in detail for a particular mode of the communication channel. That does not mean that you cannot promote it through leveraging the various channels available at your fingertips. Create content that is shareable and accessible and links those to your channels on other platforms as well.
Monitor and Analyse
Creating, editing and publishing is not the end of the content creation process. You have to keep a track of how your content is faring in the online world. There are various tools to monitor your website performance that speak directly about your performance through the different metrics. They provide you with authentic data about the way your content is perceived among the masses and your focus groups. By monitoring your performance consistently, you will invariably get data that will be of immense help in the way you create and structure your content.
Some of the most useful tools for metrics are Google Analytics, Leadfeeder, Kissmetrics, Foxmetrics, Woopra, SEMRUSH, SerpStats, Mixpanel, Heap, SE Ranking, Hubspot, Mention, Social Mention and many more. You have to assess the performance of your website to achieve maximum return on Investment
Some of the metrics that you need to take into account are the following
Bounce Rate: Bounce Rate is the percentage of the visitors that arrive at your website, view one page (mostly the Landing Page) and then navigate away from your website without further interactions or visits to other pages
Page views: What is the total number of views for your web page. the more the number of views, automatically the more chances of getting leads for conversions
Seo Derived Traffic: Seo traffic or organic traffic is the traffic you get to your website purely on the merit of your content. You don’t pay for the same. Therefore, they are authentic leads who come to your website impressed with your content creation.
Conversion rate: Conversion rate is the percentage of your leads who respond to a CTA (Call to Action) on your website based on your content.
Audience: The new subscribers that you garner after they go through your piece of content.
Engagement and Referrals: These are all the likes comment and shares that your website enjoys purely on the standard and quality of your content.
Optimize and Repurpose
The data and information you procure from the different metrics help you to address any issues with your content. You can alter and optimize your content according to the requirements, make it even more valuable to your prospective customers.
You can also repurpose your content by moulding it to be suitable for other channels as well. Repurposing in its essence is altering content to be published on some other medium than its source of original publishing. That is a great opportunity to maximize your reach to more leads and enjoy more visibility for your brand or business entity.
Remember the phrase “Content is king!
Always remember that content is the bottom line for any product or service. Make sure to cater to your consumers and you have a very successful content created for your customers.