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How to create more engaging editorial content

  1. Engage! 7 Strategies for Driving Relevance & Resonance in Written Content
  2. Good writing does not succeed or fail on the strength of its ability to persuade. It succeeds or fails on the strength of its ability to engage you, to make you think, to give you a glimpse into someone else's head. ~Malcolm Gladwell
  3. This is the outside of Malcolm Gladwell’s head.
  4. When our content doesn’t address the audience’s needs right from the start, they move on to content that does. An inconvenient truth
  5. What is engagement?
  6. Engagement prompts action. Purchases Referrals Likes,etc. Social sharing Subscriptions Comments Reviews Clicks Links Queries Surveys Conversations
  7. Raises awareness Provides info & knowledge Creates interest & consideration Offers supporting info & context Engaging content:
  8. Drive engagement with: Audience focus Call to action Relevant details Voice & tone Formatting Heads/subheads Images Shareability
  9. Audience Focus
  10. 1. Be the Audience What gets and keeps you interested? Investigate your own experience as a content consumer to learn what compels engagement.
  11. 2. Define Your Audience(s) Who, specifically, are you trying to reach? Develop persona(e), not labels, to understand your audience better.
  12. People How you describe your audience in terms of traits, values, needs/concerns and the experience/feeling they want to have. Busy parents seeking safe, educational after-school care for their kids. or Tenants who need off-hours repairs.
  13. Purpose | Call to Action
  14. 3. Focus on Purpose What do you want the audience to think, feel and/or do? Guide content & improve results with a clear purpose & call to action.
  15. Purpose | Call to ActionPurpose | Call to Action What you want the audience to think/ feel What you want the audience to do TAC is a good steward of my donation/I trust TAC The people I like to associate with support TAC I’m proud of my involvement with TAC Come to TAC events Continue to support TAC/increase support Encourage others to support TAC
  16. Relevance
  17. 3. Increase Relevance w/Questions What are the questions and objections the audience may have? Anticipate & address audience questions, push-back & concerns.
  18. Questions What questions/objections might your audience have? What’s in it for me? Why should I care? Is this relevant to me? What do you need me to do? I can’t afford it/I don’t have time.
  19. 5. Increase Relevance w/Details What evidence, explanations &/or examples address needs, support ideas? Use details to expand on key concepts, answer questions & enhance relevance.
  20. ContentContent Main Idea Key Details The one most important thing you want the audience to know The big idea or take- away Evidence Examples Explanation
  21. 3 Kinds of Details Evidence: facts, data; helpful to decision-makers Examples: anecdotes, stories; useful for re-affirming or showing Explanations: definitions, descriptions; critical for curious, uninformed or new people
  22. Connection
  23. 6. Connect w/Voice & Word Choice Who does your audience want to hear from? Use voice and word choice to appeal to audience & build credibility, trust.
  24. Word choice builds trust, drives voice Choose accessible, meaningful words. Use plain, not boring, language. Explain jargon & technical terms as needed. How-to tips:
  25. Choose a voice that sounds like someone your audience trusts and wants to hear from. Connect audience and writer personae. How-to tips: Voice establishes credibility, relatability and trust
  26. Yet another inconvenient truth 94% of reading decisions happen before the prospect has even read a word of your content. - Heidi Cohen
  27. Design & Visuals
  28. 7. Design to Entice & Inform How can we make the content more accessible and interactive? Formatting, design, links,videos, images and social sharing help readers engage by consuming, interacting with and sharing content.
  29. Putting it all together.
  30. Audience Persona(e) Writer’s Personality Relevant Ideas & Details Think/Do/Feel Questions & Objections The Content-Purpose-Audience™ Strategy
  31. The C-P-A
  32. One more inconvenient truth These techniques improve engagement. Coupling them with a healthy dose of analytics increases results dramatically.
  33. Measure what makes your business better. Sales & queries Leads & referrals Feedback, surveys & ideas Subscriptions & downloads Retweets, comments & shares Reviews, ratings & recommendations
  34. Get more detailed information on using the C-P-A!

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