According to the Content Marketing Institute’s annual research, more than 80% of B2B marketers are pumping out content marketing like Texas tea and hoping to strike it rich in the way of online conversions that ultimately lead to sales and revenue. Companies have employed content marketing strategies that include blogs, articles and Web site content or at least have a vision to roll one out. The real challenge facing the industry today is finding great content writers that can create informative, enlightening and engaging content that drives online readers to act, dig deeper or connect in a way that generates financial gain for the company.
According to CMI, the available pool of great content writers isn’t as deep as the industry would like. There are a number of problems with that chasm that creates a hurdle for the industry. Some writers lack experience, enthusiasm and energy, or they simply don’t understand their audience. It’s difficult to output an in-depth, informative piece when the writer is unfamiliar with the topic. And if a writer finds an industry boring, it will reflect in the composition, or if a writer approaches a blog like a chore, the piece will fall short on vitality.
CMI’s suggestions for resolving such issues is recruiting writers from across the company rather than have the task for producing all of the content fall on just one person. In other words, cast out a wider net. To combat boring, mundane content, give the writer time to delve deeper into the topic and encourage them to complement the verbiage with meaningful data. As writers, we must approach the task as a viable and exciting way to connect with our audience. That means you’ll need to do the homework to identify the audience, including having a clear and thorough understanding of the company’s products and services.
So what does a great content writer look like?
Master of the English Language
First and foremost, content writers must be proficient in spelling, grammar and sentence construction. Otherwise, a poorly written piece riddled with misspellings and grammatical errors loses credibility with online readers. Immediately.
Inquisitive and Thorough Researchers
Content writers are also expeditioners. Long before writers put fingertips to keyboard to peck out a blog or article, they will have first conducted thorough research related to the topic at hand.
Breadth of Knowledge and Expertise
Writers with an expansive range of expertise on a variety of topics have the upper hand and are highly sought-after commanders of the written word. The best way for writers to remain competitive is to stay on top of industry trends and news. Make it a practice to read other industry expert blogs.
Flexible and Easily Adaptable
The ability to shift gears at any moment is key since writers may be asked to deliver a blog, an article or a press release at the drop of a hat. Each requires a different style and voice. A good content writer performs with ease no matter the delivery format.
Innovative and Fearless Storytellers
Realizing online readers have little patience for long-winded, confusing and mind-numbing content, great writers have a knack for composing reader-friendly, concise and entertaining short stories that prod online readers to act.
So while everyone may be doing content marketing, not everyone is doing it in accordance with best practices. Finding ways to clear the hurdles is crucial. The onus to improve and seek solutions not only falls on B2B marketers, but on content writers as well. Share your ideas on what it takes to develop great content writers and wordsmiths!
Elaine Veltri – Writer/Editor