As you are beefing up your content marketing efforts in 2018, there are a few things you’ll want to consider doing to help you make a stronger connection with your audience. After all, content marketing is a super tool that helps you to attract and engage with your ideals clients online if you’re doing it right.
Experts all across the marketing industry are sharing marketing predictions that reinforce “quality,” “authentic,” and “useful” content, but what do some of these vague and often ambiguous guidelines really look like for those of us in the trenches trying to implement these concepts? That’s what we’re here to talk about today.
Here are 4 ways to be more human in your content marketing efforts this year:
Use Your Voice.
This is easier said than done, especially if you hire writers to help you create your content. But it’s absolutely doable whether you write all your own content or leverage outside expertise. The important thing is to make sure that your unique voice carries through to your audience and in order to do this, you really must be sure to participate in the content creation process. How you think and how you deliver useful information should have all the hallmarks of your unique personality. Maybe you use metaphors a lot when you discuss complex concepts with your clients – use metaphors in your writing! Maybe you’re incredibly funny and you have a way of lightening up certain topics with quips and sass that are all your own. Don’t feel like you have to write content like a textbook. Instead, write how you speak. And if you use writers, be sure to touch base and talk with them. The more they hear you speak, the better they can tap into your voice when they write. Also, review and edit content created by someone else.
Get Social on Social Media.
PEW Research came out with their 2016 Social Media Update and it shows that Facebook usage is on the rise, while Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and Pinterest are pretty consistent with last year’s findings. Creating great content isn’t enough; you also have to build an audience to share it with. Social media channels are the platforms you should be leveraging to connect and engage with your clients and ideal clients. The important thing to remember about social media channels is that they are not a one-way broadcasting media channel; they are an opportunity to connect and engage with your audience in real-time. Whether your goal is to get noticed by industry publications or to generate more interest for your product or service, you have to show up where your audience is in a real way. Spend a little time each week sending notes to people who are engaging in your posts. Take a hot second to reciprocate the love and like, share, or comment on their content as well.
Show Your Face (literally).
Did you know that the brain becomes more active when it looks at human faces than it does other objects? (Brain Blogger) It’s true, our brains are made to respond to visual information and the human face is something that our minds are hypersensitive to. In fact, when we were born, the first thing that we focused on was the faces of our family members. There is no doubt that visual content is highly effective in capturing and keeping your audience’s attention. (Canva) Therefore, in order to be more human in your content marketing efforts, don’t hide your face from your audience. When people see your face, they will make a determination about you. Assuming you do not look like a mean and angry individual, odds are in your favor that putting your face forward to your audience will only help them feel more connected to you and increase your likability and trustworthiness.
Put Out Unpolished Content.
Hey, the consensus among leading marketers is to create valuable and quality content. Who said anything about buttoned-up and polished? Every brand is different, but there is something very endearing about seeing the unedited side of someone’s personality. Some of the most effective video marketing out there is taking place live using Periscope, Facebook, and Snapchat. Live streaming isn’t expected to be edited; it’s attractive and human because it’s unedited access to you. Podcasts? Even if they are previously recorded, some of the best parts are when hosts go off script and tell a joke, laugh with their guests, and focus more on having a conversation than “performing.” Become a comfortable place for people to access information and more people will come. There is a reason why we all love bloopers and outtakes: it helps us feel more connected and part of what we are seeing or hearing.
As you prepare your content marketing for another year, I encourage you to be yourself and put yourself out there more, not less. We are in relationship businesses and it’s never a bad idea to be more human as you work to connect with the clients you want most.