I read an article about creating content ‘people will love’. It’s great if people love your content. But I’d rather have content that works.
Content that works for me is content that achieves its purpose. Make sure you understand what you want to achieve with your content. What’s the purpose?
Does the content match your ideal customer’s expectations? Are you solving a problem? Does the content solidify your relationship with your ideal customer?
I once managed marketing for a technology company driven by an engineering mindset. We tried to sell whatever the engineers dreamed up. Rather than making what we could sell the company tried to sell what it could make.
One product was exceptional and spectacular.  We launched at a major trade show and prospective users jammed our booth. Everyone immediately  understood the product and wanted to play with it. They loved it.
Very few bought it. It didn’t solve a real problem. The investment in creating and launching a very innovative product was a total waste.

As I hammer home often, the purpose of business is to create customers. Content’s purpose is to connect people with information. You want your content to draw readers into your sales funnel. The sales funnel leads the prospect to a sale. Nothing you do in your business has value unless the act contributes to creating a customer.
The starting point for creating content that works is having something to say. Don’t throw out random ideas on any topic that comes to mind.
Focus on telling a story how you overcame an obstacle or solved a problem. Most likely others encounter the same situation. Layout the challenge and solution, step-by-step. But, don’t belabor any points. Our time is precious and we want a quick dose, not too many words.
There’s an ongoing argument about how long a blog post or email should be. Is long or short form most effective? Recalling a moment when someone asked Abraham Lincoln how long a man’s legs should be. He replied, “Long enough to reach the ground.”
That thinking determines the length of any article. Some of my most effective are less than 500 words. Others are much longer. The point is to cover your topic. Open with a strong statement and close even stronger. Give some meat in the middle. Have the reader think time taken to read your post or email was well spent.
Solve a problem. Not a problem you perceive, but a real life encountered problem. That’s the best way to help another person. Give a simple tip that one can use immediately.
Suppose you have a do-it-yourself site offering products and solutions for everyday problems. As you sell give away tips and tricks that help the homeowner and apartment dweller use what’s at hand. Here’s an example:
Here’s an all-purpose cleaner you can make at home. Mix 4 tablespoons of baking soda and 1 quart of warm tap water. Us this mixture to clean kitchen counters, appliances and inside the fridge. Be sure to wipe away any cleaner residue. Most surfaces will shine.
By-the-way, I use that baking soda mix to clean our kitchen and my home office desktop. It works!
Keep your articles and emails tight and to the point. Say what you have to say in an easy manner. Write like you’re talking to a friend. Because that’s how you want the reader to respond. Like they’re reading a message from a friend.
Remember: people do business with people they like.
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