How to Transform Your Knowledge Into Content That Inspires Action
Content is an important aspect of online marketing- it’s what validates your company and inspires action. When a user lands on your website, you want to turn them from a lead into a customer.
Now you don’t need a degree in creative writing or online marketing to be successful. It certainly helps, but it’s not a prerequisite. What you do need is passion, because passion is going to leak through your writing and give users that nice warm fuzzy feeling they’ve been looking for.
Here are some of the best kept secrets when it comes to blogging and building your content online. Oftentimes it just comes down to perspective- as a business entrepreneur you may have a different interpretation of what the purpose of content is. Like passion, purpose also leaks through your writing.
For you, providing content may be to inform, generate or convert leads. For users, it’s to be entertained. The most shared, liked and viewed pictures and videos on the internet are about funny cats. What does that tell you about society?
This doesn’t mean you have to change your company’s logo to that of a cat, but it just illustrates how society thinks. They want to be entertained about something they find interesting. You on the other hand, want to sell information and to educate people. The solution? Edutain, by creating content both pertinent and entertaining.
While it’s true that customers want the information and knowledge you provide, they (knowingly or not) are searching for that ‘good feeling’. The emotional level has a higher level of importance than the informational level. So for business writers the mistake is by only focusing on the informative aspect of blogs and content.
Blogs and content that produce the best results are ones that are created to fulfill emotions. While we have yet to discover the Higgs Boson of online writing, we’ve discovered a rather successful formula for content succes. You should write to INSPIRE, INFORM, and INSTRUCT. This goes for writing an online book, creating a video or blog.
To inspire people, you need to figure out what emotion your readers are most likely going to have (or you would like them to have). Determination, ‘You can do it!’ or anti-procrastination are some examples.
Once you’ve determined the rose coloured lens you want your writing to be viewed through, you can use that lens in each chapter/blog/video and talk about it in a powerful way to push that button over and over again. And then once more for fun.
Oftentimes, inspiring people (effectively) requires motivation. You must motivate customers again and again and again before giving them information, and then once more following the information. A motivational sandwich oozing with information.
For example, if you are trying to help customers learn how to make their skin look better and more attractive you can say, “In this section you are going to learn my 3 step system that only takes 5 minutes a day that makes your skin looks much younger and gives you the youthful glow that makes you look very attractive”. Want to keep reading? I do!
By doing this, you are letting them know what to expect, and motivating them by telling them you will be exposing the secret. Here’s another example.
If you are trying to help people get over their fear of failure in order to reach financial success, you can say, “In this chapter, you are going to learn a powerful visualization exercise that will eliminate your fear of failure and remove the blocks you are facing to making money for your business”.
Fairly simple stuff, right?
This is probably the toughest section because for businesses, it’s the most focused on. It’s easy to get caught up in the ‘information download’ mode, spewing forth facts and cluttering information.
Try to think of content this way- if the piece of information isn’t directly connected to helping readers get the emotional outcome they want, then it isn’t valuable to learn (for them).
This doesn’t mean that students shouldn’t learn about the War of 1812 and such, it just means that it needs to be presented in a way that will emotionally affect students. That’s why in classrooms, teachers try to get the students involved as much as possible, using as many senses as possible.
In the online world, we are limited to the types of interactions we can have with readers, and let’s face it- your website isn’t the scratch and sniff variety. We are limited to what we can present visually, and only visually. Auditory if you have any videos.
The more your information is connected to the results that they want, then the more valuable it becomes to them, the more they will pay attention and pay more money for it.
The formula? “Now that you know the <info>, here is how to use that <info> to get the result faster”. It’s not bulletproof but it’s pretty darn close.
If your customers don’t use what they learn it almost begs the question, ‘why teach them?’. If they don’t get the results they want, they won’t buy more products from you. This is why you need to be able to transform information to action.
Simple action steps such as step 1, step 2, step 3 are great examples. Using videos are also great because humans are visual learners. People are more likely to do something they’ve visualised in their minds, so map it out clearly for them!
This works well not just in writing but also in your marketing. People need exact steps and instructs in order to try something new.
How you structure your instructions are up to you, but when you look at magazines, they target the emotional/motivating hot button early on, then provide the instructional information (which is much less emotional than the content).
The World Wide Web Is A Stage
Imagine that the internet is stage where you can present your company to a huge audience. When you create content, you have the MC to introduce your main speaker, right? What is his purpose? He is there to create buzz, motivate the crowd for the main event/speaker and put everyone in a good mood.
You should translate that in creating content for online use. People will be coming back for more and enjoying your time on stage much more than if they jump right into the main event. There is less mental preparation and uncertainty of where things are going.
And remember- have fun! Creating content shouldn’t be a chore, it’s a way of expressing yourself. You are the MC of your stage!