Content marketing has been around for a long time, however it's gained significant momentum of late. Content for your business may mean blog posts, graphics, videos, live streaming or podcasts.
Have you ever wondered what you could do to help improve your ability to create content that is regularly shared and engaged with by your community?
I'm going to share with you the nine qualities successful content marketers have that enable them to consistently create amazing content that's eagerly consumed and shared by their communities.
It's important to remember businesses that are successful at content marketing likely didn't start out with all of these qualities, but have developed them over time.
You too can work to develop these qualities for yourself to improve your content and the success of it.
Here are the nine qualities that successful content marketers share - and how you can build these qualities in yourself and/or your team.
9 Essential Qualities of All Successful Content Marketers
Passion is a vital driving force behind creating great content, and how you can consistently create awesome and valuable content for your community.
Your passion is important as it's tied into why you do what you do and how you communicate that story or message to your community.
The clearer your message, and the degree of intensity with which you can express it, plays a vital role in how it'll be received by your community.
When you're passionate, people can feel it.
There will be days when your passion wanes or falters. Don't panic. This happens to even the most consistent and successful content marketers.
Be prepared. Have a plan.
While passion is paramount to starting and carrying you through content creation, it's preparation and planning that'll ensure you see the biggest return on the time, energy and resources that you invest in your content marketing.
Once you've figured out the specific business goals you want your content to help you achieve, you can begin to create a content marketing strategy based on those goals, your audience's preferred content format and the social media platforms they use.
For example, if your audience spends most of their time on Instagram, image or video based content will be a better choice than texted based content.
Putting your strategy to paper will ultimately help, especially in times of low passion or when you're unsure, as it can provide valuable guidance.
3. Action Oriented
Without action, your passion and planning will be wasted. You need to be prepared to take action on the plans and strategies you create.
While it can be overwhelming to tackle your strategy as a whole, it can help to break it into small, manageable tasks.
Set aside blocks of time each week to work on the different tasks. For tasks like writing blog posts or recording a podcast, you might want to set aside larger blocks of time over a couple of days.
Doing something once or once-in-a-while won't bring about the kind of results that you want or need. In order to accomplish your goals and see results, you must commit to consistent content creation.
This is often much easier said than done.
To help you stay committed and publish your content regularly and on time, you'll want to create a content (editorial) calendar.
Start by reviewing your content strategy. Also consider the time blocks you have set aside each week to help create a calendar that'll work for you and your unique needs.
Your content calendar should include the publish date, topic of your content, your call to action (if applicable), the format (blog post, image, video, etc.) and which social media platforms you will be posting it on.
You may want to test how often you publish your content but it's important to always remember - quality over quantity.
Life throws challenges/opportunities at us (depending on how you view them) and you need to be able to adapt as you go.
Whether it's staying relevant with the latest trends or adapting to an unforeseen situation or crisis, you need to be able to adjust your content creation and publishing as required.
This may mean that you need to create content in-the-moment (images or streaming video when something is happening live) or perhaps pausing your content publishing altogether for a period of time during a tragedy.
I cannot stress enough the importance of listening.
If you want to create awesome content that will be engaged with and shared by your community, find out what they want and need.
Your community will tell you exactly what their greatest needs and challenges are - if you listen.
To do this, spend time on the social media platforms they use and watch what they are sharing and engaging with. People only like, comment and most especially - share what they feel emotional about, whether these emotions are positive or negative.
This can provide you with valuable insight to ensure that you are creating content that provides them with the greatest value.
7. Good Communicator
Once you know what your community wants in terms of content, you need to communicate this, in whatever form, in a way that resonates and is easily consumed and shared by your them.
The attention span of your community is short, and the demands for their attention are high.
Your content then must not only satisfy their needs, but also get their attention and keep it.
As I mentioned above, figuring out what they react to emotionally can give you a glimpse of what can catch their attention.
Also, if you're creating blog posts, it's important to write posts that can be easily scanned and read. This is as much about formatting as it is about the content itself.
Don't hold back. Share your best knowledge with your community.
Successful content creators are generous givers.
The secret is Reciprocity.
Nothing makes a stronger and more genuine impression on someone then when you give selflessly, generously and (most importantly) without the expectation of receiving anything in return.
Share your best and most useful tips with your community - this is the key to gaining thought leadership. By sharing this information with them, you begin to build a relationship with them, helping them to know, like and trust you, which is vital if you want them to buy from you in the future.
Now if you're worried that by giving away your best secrets that you are passing up work, banish the thought from your mind.
Those who'll actually take your information and use it would likely not have paid for your services anyway. But they might just choose to share this information with their network, which is amazing word-of-mouth and gets your message shared to a much larger audience.
There will always be a group of people who'll see the value in the information you offer, and lack the time, skills or desire to do it for themselves. These are the people who will happily pay for your expertise.
9. Continuous Learner
Never stop learning.
Whether it's in your industry or about content creation itself, take the time to stay up-to-date on what's new, what's important and what's changing.
This practice will help you stay passionate and spark new ideas for your own content.
This doesn't mean you have to jump on every shiny new platform or app you come across, but it's important to be aware of what's out there, especially if it's of interest to your community.
It's an amazing feeling when your community finds value from your content and then takes the time to engage with and share it.
Whether you're trying to build the size of your community or are just starting out, you too can develop these important qualities of successful content marketers and use them to help you build your own success.
What other qualities do you think are essential for successful content marketing? If I've missed something you think should be includes please share in comments below.
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