Hey there, all you wonderful introverts, cautious optimists, and hesitant brand-builders! Do you ever find…
When I first started my blog in 2007, I had great intentions to give away tips and tricks that would help my reader get the most out of their day, their career, and their life. Little did I realize all the things that came with that lofty helpful vision.
Whenever you embark on creating content for your audience, you’re in a sandbox – creating and trying new things, each and every time. Dialing in a content strategy can take time, and trials, but there are some things that we can avoid, as well as things we can dial into, to ensure our content is hitting the mark and impacting our audience.
Before we dive into what mistakes to avoid (and what best practices can help you on your content creation journey), let’s visit some key definitions:
Content creation is the process of generating, developing, and publishing different types of content, such as articles, blog posts, social media posts, videos, podcasts, infographics, and other forms of digital media, with the goal of engaging and informing a target audience. Content creation involves identifying the needs and interests of a specific audience and creating relevant and valuable content that satisfies those needs and interests.
The process of content creation typically involves brainstorming ideas, researching topics, creating an outline or structure, writing or recording the content, editing and refining it, and publishing or distributing it through various channels. Effective content creation requires a deep understanding of the audience and the ability to create content that resonates with them, encourages engagement, and drives desired actions.
The key takeaways from this definition are “publishing”, “engaging”, “informing”, and “target audience”. Without dialing in your activities with those keywords and phrases, your content creation could be missing the mark.
Here are some common content creation mistakes that people often make:
- Overthinking the content – when you’re a creator, you tend to lean towards perfectionism, which can paralyze you into not getting started, or not launching your content to your audience at all. We often get hung up on creating the perfect copy and the perfect assets, we end up keeping it to ourselves and convincing ourselves that the content isn’t good enough to share.
- Not understanding the target audience: If you don’t know who your target audience is, it’s difficult to create content that resonates with them. You need to understand their needs, wants, and pain points to create content that they will find valuable.
- Focusing too much on the product or service: While it’s important to promote your product or service, your content should be more than just a sales pitch. Your content should provide value to the reader by answering their questions, solving their problems, or providing helpful tips and advice.
- Not focusing enough on your product or service – You’re creating trust and cementing your position as an industry expert with your content, now is the time to show your audience how they can best engage with you and your organization. It’s all about your audience, make it easy for them to work with you by outlining clearly how they can do so.
- Not promoting your content: Creating great content is only half the battle. You also need to promote it through social media, email, and other channels to get it in front of your target audience.
- Ignoring SEO: Search engine optimization (SEO) is critical for content creation because it helps your content to be found by people who are searching for it online. By optimizing your content for keywords and other SEO factors, you can increase your visibility in search results.
- Creating run-on content – Readers like to consume things, short and sweet. Give your reader the goods, and use visuals to help break up longer copy. Carriage returns, images and keyboard symbols can help with written copy, and varying camera angles and B Roll can help with video.
In lieu of these mistakes, let’s try this with our content instead!
- Dial into your target audience – Knowing who you want to impact and influence will make all the difference. Your audience, and their pain points, challenges, and questions, will drive your content bank of ideas, and create a connection with them faster than creating content that you’re not sure they need.
- Dial into your keywords and hashtags – You can expand your reach by including the keywords your audience is looking for, and giving them a sense that you are the right person to help them with their questions. Choose up to 5 keywords that you want to be known for, and ensure your content (and social media hashtags) include these things to help you cement your thought leadership and make you easy to find.
- Launch, just launch – it won’t be perfect your first time out, or even your 1001st time out. Launching your content is the only way to make it better the next time you create something. If it’s 75% perfect, it’s perfect – get it out and start to perfect your process for the next piece of content!
- Give, give, and give some more – The principles of inbound marketing are rooted in the continual giving of tips, hacks, and information that your target audience needs. By focusing 70% of your content on giving, and less than 20% on promotions, you’re tipping the scale towards trust, thought leadership, and partnership.
- Find your content balance – Create a great deal of helpful and entertaining content, and balance it out by showing your audience how to engage with your products and services.
Content creation is an ongoing journey, and can take time to find your perfect content rhythm. The only way to know what your rhythm is, is to get in motion and start creating! I’m cheering you on, my friend!
To learn more tips about how to effectively use LinkedIn as your content creation platform-of-choice, you can learn more LinkedIn tips by visiting my other LinkedIn posts here. Or check out my on-demand LinkedIn course here.