Improve community content for better outcomes
Is all the community content produced by your citizens, businesses and non-profit organisations, out of sync? You will not open people’s eyes with lousy content; you will turn them off.
When you need to generate some critical activity within the next 30 days, or, things are starting to get a little out of control around the community, you might need to act. Is your content up to speed, and will it have the desired impact?
Maybe the problem is a new government policy, unexpected visitors to the community, or the business or the town needs urgent support for a project.
Look at writing like cooking; you must have the right ingredients in the correct order, with the proper presentation.
The good news is you have most likely done the heavy lifting. You have content already written and know who will need to receive it, and how to get it to the right people.
Will your content do the job as well as you think?
You have a proven track record, your existing content and all the pieces are in place to solve the problem. You are confident you have the necessary content available, and the required outcome is entirely doable.
With all the other essential elements in place, the more effective your content, the more activity you can generate.
Write like you talk, not the way you told to write
Words play a critical part in the community’s content marketing efforts, and changing one can effectively alter the meaning of the message. However, words will not matter if the words are not read.
Avoid academic writing
Out in the real world, the one where the actions count a person speaks dramatically different than the way academics do; they do not want to see 50 words when ten would do.
People like bullet points
Most people want to get to the facts quickly. Stop being amazing and start being reliable, practical, useful and helpful.
Assume your readers can be selfish
Your readers are always thinking about one thing whenever they are reading your material. WIIFM, What Is In It For Me’. So as you write or review your copy, keep the “WIIFM” details close.
Do not worry if your content is not perfect or the best material of all time
It is essential to have the right information available as soon as possible. It can be edited more closely later.
Make your content look friendly and easy to digest
Your content should read like it had been put together by a real person, instead of some business software.
Make your content look and feel friendly
Even with conversational messages, there are still many things you can do to have people read it. Well spaced, the right font, quality pictures and videos are critical.
At best people skim through the content quickly
At worst they skip it entirely wondering who has time to sort through and try and decipher the messages. Always keep in mind, a picture is worth a thousand words. It does not mean you need to highlight everything.
People don’t believe in hype, but do not water down the content
You want to highlight the uniqueness of the community and its businesses and the benefits available. Community members and tourists are flooded with content full of bloated promises, shouted from every which way you can imagine. So while the other marketers are using this sort of strategy, do this instead. Always add proof to the promises.
Do not water your content down; compelling content is more a transfer of enthusiasm and emotion than anything else. So by putting more of ‘you’ into your writing, there is a good chance your readers will connect with it even more. Is it a little scary, putting more of your personality into what you write? You might feel vulnerable and wonder what if people do not like what we have to say. Your audience will be attracted to what is different. Readers can always be drawn into what is real, so the sooner they can get to the ‘meat’ the better.
“When I apply a systematic process to my writing, it tends to increase my output of innovative ideas and opportunities, the time spent is well worth it”. Peter Sergeant
“All the words I use in my stories can be found in the dictionary; it’s just a matter of arranging them into the right sentences”. Somerset Maugham