Research is everything
Professional writers are valuable because they are constantly adding value to the content they are creating. They do this by remaining in “research mode” at all times. Research shouldn’t be reserved for the planning phase of content creation. It should be a part of the entire writing process, from start to finish. If you’re looking to develop top-notch content, be prepared to become an active researcher.
Develop a unique voice
To truly set yourself apart from the crowd, your content should have a unique style that defines your brand, business or personality. As a content creator, your “voice” is everything. If you haven’t established your own voice, look for five content writers whose style you enjoy and figure out ways to learn from them. If you have an idea to convey, you can do it in your own unique style. It just takes some practice.
Focus on one topic at a time
Whether you’re writing copy or developing a thought-provoking blog post, you should focus on fleshing out one topic at a time. After you establish what you’re going to write about, spend the entire article or page talking about it. In other words, be specific and on point.
Depth and length should be on par
If you’re writing a short article, provide only a high level discussion of your particular topic. If you have thousands of words to devote to an article, consider providing more detail. In other words, the depth of your article should match its length.
Cover a unique angle
Chances are excellent you’re going to be writing about topics that many others have covered before. While this is perfectly okay, you must bring freshness to the topic to avoid repeating what has already been said about the subject. This isn’t as hard as it looks. Simply pick a topic and focus on a specific point of view. Then keep points #1-4 in mind.
Your title should be unique
Your content could be A+ material, but if nobody read it, what’s the point? That’s why your title is so important. As a general rule, you should spend as much time on your title as you do on the content itself. You want your title to be unique, thought-provoking and reflective of the topic you’re going to be talking about.
Your first sentence or paragraph should be the best
Apply everything that we talked about in #6 to the first sentence or paragraph and you’re pretty much guaranteed to hook readers to the very end. While it’s nice to assume that people will read every word of your marvelous post, nothing is further from the truth. Most people scan instead of read. If you don’t hook them early on, the chances they will read your content through is slim to none.
In other words, don’t manipulate people. Your content must be accurate, trustworthy and subject to a great deal of research and scrutiny. Your title should also reflect the content you are developing. Please, no click-bait titles!
Close on a high
The end of your post is just as important as the beginning. At the very end, you should consider summarizing your main points, showcasing how the reader will benefit from the information they’ve just consumed. This is the perfect time to bring your content “full circle” and implement your CTA (Call to Action).
Avoid getting overly complicated
When it comes to content writing, simplicity is always best. So put the thesaurus away and focus on simple, easy-to-understand words. Remember, you are developing content that will be consumed by a large audience, not some abstract paper your second year university professor will be grading.
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