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The Right Content Format: An Integral Part Of Content Marketing Strategy



You might be a passionate content writer, but do you experiment and innovate new formats and new ways to tell your stories? Do you mix different types of content for successful content marketing strategy?

Do you know great content won’t get discovered, used, or shared on its own? It has to be packaged well – in a way that interests people and keep them engaged. However, the perfect package depends on a number of variables including the topic, the timing, the audiences and most importantly, the right content creation format.

Content marketing format to engage readers

Creating content that people want to read doesn’t just involve coming up with great ideas, thoughts and suggestions. The right formatting to organize your thoughts and lay out your ideas in the most coherent and effective ways possible is imperative.

The Right Content Format: An Integral Part Of Content Marketing Strategy

The number list

People simply love numbers as they make your content look neat. Write a brief paragraph introduction of the topic, jump straight into your lists of secrets, factors, reasons, or ways. However, keep the exposition of each item down to only a few sentence long for maximum effect. Make sure, you number your list correctly and give the right total number in the article title. For instance, ‘Six Secrets to healthy Skin’ or ‘Top Ten Whale Watching Destinations in the World’.

The how-to guide

People often have the urge to read and understand what they don’t know. They want to know the intricacies of doing things for themselves. However, if your content projects the ‘How-to’ information, make sure to provide the following format to engage your readers

  • To the point info
  • Relevant actions steps towards a given objective
  • Simple sentence structure

To write a high-value ‘How-to’ content, you need to know exactly what you’re talking about and consider your expertise. Your content must be able to help the readers accomplish their tasks and appreciate your excellent tutorial. For instance, ‘How to Design eCommerce Website for Maximum Conversion’? Or ‘How to Stay Fit during Cruise Vacation’?

The overview guide

Overview or detail posts tend to offer more value to readers and get more social shares and links. The overview guide is the detailed information that provides thorough examination of the fundamentals of a given subject or topic. The overview format should be able to accomplish the following objectives

  • Help readers on how to accomplish a task
  • Help readers make sound judgments and decision about a topic

So focus on delivering high value information with your ‘overview guide’ of a given topic or subject.

The Trend

Time is of the essence when it comes to writing about latest trends. When you create content about trends like the ‘Latest gadgets, hairstyle, or tax shelter, people want to learn more about them as quickly as possible. Format your content in such a way so that you can tab on new trends. This may involve looking out for trends set by celebrity endorsements, resurgence of past styles, or events.

Although trends come and go within a short frame of time, the latest trend format remains evergreen. You’ll always find something trendy to write about, as the elements within trends might change frequently, but the overall subject remains the same.

Always try to get the first scoop on new trends ahead of the competition and use words like ‘latest’, ‘news studies’, or latest secret’ to make it more interesting. For instance, ‘The Latest Wearable Gadgets to Check your Fitness Level’ or ‘ The New Weapons against High Blood Pressure’.

The controversial guide

If you have raised a controversy or present an alternative angle to a popular topic by discussing its drawbacks and current norms in the industry, you’ll find people are talking and thinking about it. You may also find your initial thoughts about a topic are knocked down and you get another view of how things actually work. In such situations, your content format should be able to reveal point-by-point findings of research and news about the controversial topic and should have valid points to justify its controversies.

Use of data to show impact

This is one of the reasons why infographics is so powerful in content marketing. It combines numbers, words and imagery to display your ideas and thoughts that everyone can understand. Similarly, you can present data in your content to support your information and make people understand its effectiveness. It is a way easier for readers to care about the content.

The right tone

This is probably the most substantial element of creating impactful content. However, it takes not only experimentation to get it started but an in-depth knowledge including

  • Correct use of grammar
  • Punctuation usage
  • Sense of humor
  • Word choice

All these elements form an integral part of the content formatting and can dramatically change the outlook of your content.

The final guide

Check out the following checklist while you prepare your content

  • Sentences should consists of 40 words
  • Paragraphs should contain approximately 50 to 100 words
  • There should not be more than two independent clauses in a sentence
  • Use numbers, energetic adjectives to make headlines interesting and active
  • The headline should not exceed 50 characters
  • Introduction to form a brief summary of the chosen topic is necessary
  • Proofread the content to catch all the errors
  • Invite people to leave comments

But before jumping straight into the content creation format, it is essential to consider a few factors that can help to create better content that meets your goal. Try it out.

Know your audiences

Before you start writing a content, it is important to know

Figure out the topic

Not only do you need to find out what format works best, you also need to decide what topics you should choose when creating content in those formats. It is therefore wise to research your audiences to figure out what type of content they’re most likely to respond well to.

Exploring Google Analytics

Explore Google Analytics to better understand:

  • Which posts and pages are resonating strongly with the audiences?
  • Which pages /posts are getting the most traffic?
  • How much time are people spending on key pages?
  • Which pages/posts are converting people into email subscriber?

Review other source of insights

Review multiple data points across different channels where you distribute your content, including

  • Number of webinar attendees
  • Views and downloads from presentation and SlideShare
  • Which page/post are shared on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn
  • Talk to people directly to know what they are thinking and what their preferences are

It is important to determine the right content format to help you get your message across, in the way your audiences will enjoy to read it.

Images: ”Content Marketing strategy for online business conceptShutterstock.com

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The Author:

Sumita Das Dutta is a tech geek and a web analyst. She has also been associated with technical writing; blogging on Google web analytics services, seo audit, responsive design, online marketing, app development and social media engagement. She is a content developer at Softz Solutions.

Add Your Comment

  • http://www.tweakyourbiz.com/ Sian Phillips

    Thank you for this excellent post Sumita. There is a lot more to writing a blog post that just getting your words out there so thanks for sharing these tips with us.

  • Sumita Das Dutta

    Hi Sian! Thank you once again for appreciating my post.I completely agree to what you have said

  • http://j.mp/Office2GO Juliana Fitzwater Julia

    Nice for the newbies, I’m gonna send them this link. Thank you for awesome article

  • Sumita Das Dutta

    Hi Juliana! you are welcome. Yes, please do share it with as many as you want.

  • http://www.krishtechnolabs.com/ Krish TechnoLabs

    Image captions are nearly as important as blog headlines, so they shouldn’t be neglected.