Take a Moment
Having been back to work for only one week, it seems that the world has been plunged into total despair and for some people their lives have been changed forever. This is a deadly virus and we need to do what we can to minimize the spread. At this time we need to count our blessings, keep an eye on our loved one’s and trust that this all will be back to normal soon.
I realised that some of my posts have not been quite as good as they could have been so I am trying to add subtle design changes in the hope that the reader will subconsciously think that they are getting better, without actually seeing the difference. These are not subliminal messages, so the audience will not suddenly rush out and buy an ice cream or a bottle of pop. I’m not going to divulge the difference and if you have read any f my posts then see if you recognise what I have added?
During the last week I have noticed that others who blog have started to switch to a new form of writing where they draw out small stories line by line. To the old fashioned reader, I think that it looks like they are being sold something rather than be educated about something. It’s very much like bullet pointing rather than story telling, or like piecemeal, similar to staggered pointing.
I have learned that this is the new way of getting your points across in a more drip fed way, instead of overpowering the reader with too much content. You see, the point of good storytelling (through good content), is to draw the reader along on a wondrous trail of words in order to persuade them into making an informed decision, what we call attraction marketing.
What I am seeing lately, whether it be through blogs or posts, is not persuasive or attractive, but more quick selling. There doesn’t seem to be a narrative where you are getting to know the reader (customer), and little association in give and take.
The gentle persuasion technique that is justifiably essential between author (seller), and reader (customer), seems to take a backseat in order to cut to the chase. Please don’t get me wrong, I do believe that there is a case for a quick sale but not at the expense of persuasion. The buyers that we require are the one’s who want to come back.
Content curation is a means of sharing great content at your website without having to write it from scratch yourself. There are automated services that you can plug into your site, such as Taboola.com or Outbrain.com, which will post interesting articles on your site in the location of your choice – usually under content you have published. If you’ve ever visited The Weather Channel or popular entertainment sites, chances are you have seen this form of content curation.
Taboola and Outbrain are easy to use and can become an additional stream of income for your website, but if you want to impress the people in your niche, sharing the latest news with them is a sure way to impress.
Curating yourself will take some time, but if you are a smart business owner, you are probably already reading a number of articles per day that are related to your area of interest. You probably have several favorite blogs, news sites, and niche-related sites you visit regularly. Chances are your busy audience might not have seen some of this content, so why not share?
Some people just put up a link to the content and leave it at that. However, the best way to curate is to add value to the content by discussing it briefly. For example, a 100-word introduction to the content and link, and why you believe it to be important, also helps to demonstrate your expertise. For longer articles, you might create a summary of what you feel are the main takeaway messages contained within it.
This will help your audience find the kind of information they need, and will also impress them with how much you know.
If you’ve been struggling to “feed the beast” and keep your website or blog going with fresh, interesting content, consider sharing content that you love with your target audience, and see how much your traffic will improve.
A lot of freelancers and service providers make the mistake of focusing on themselves rather than on their clients’ needs. They also do not make it clear what value they provide. For example, they might tell everyone they work as a virtual assistant, but not make it clear exactly which top services they provide. Writing intriguing marketing copy in relation to your services can help you get more clients, and it is easier than you think.
You need to make your value proposition clear from the outset when you are writing your description of your services, but you can do so in an intriguing way. Some virtual assistants are generalists who will do just about any business-related tasks just as if they were a personal assistant working full time in an office. Others specialize in particular areas or computer programs.
When you are writing your copy, intrigue your audience by painting a picture of how great life can be if they hire you. Start by showing that you understand their pain points; that is, the things that they find most difficult in their business, which might be holding them back from the success they deserve.
By showing you understand their pain points, you are offering a solution to those problems through the services that you provide. What would their life be like if they didn’t have to spend so much time working on WordPress? How much more time would they have to grow their business if you took over their email marketing campaigns?
Think Like an Editor
When you are planning content for your site, make a list of the most important topics that should be covered. Then add newsworthy items. There’s a lot of content being produced by many different websites that can cover these topics. Share it in order to keep your audience well-informed.
Aim for the top writers and sites in your niche or industry. By sharing this type of content, you are showing that you are well read in your field.
Your Portfolio Should Support Your Assertions
It’s relatively easy to write intriguing copy, but you also have to convince them that you can deliver. The work you include in your portfolio should show exactly the kind of work you are able to do, which you are enticing them with in your marketing materials.
If you’ve been struggling to get new clients, rewrite your marketing materials to make them more intriguing and compelling, and you should soon see clients who are willing to give you the opportunity to work for them on some exciting projects.
Moving forward, I know that many people like to be enticed rather than pushed toward a sale. People like to be waltzed from the start on a journey, so that they know and trust you. What they don’t want to do is to be rammed down a sales funnel picking up quick sales on the way toward like a shopping trolley dash. We as writers need to present the content with the customer in mind, not with the sale as the main goal. Don’t forget, customers do not tend to buy at the first visit, nor at the second visit and we want them to stay as customers and therefore we have to keep the focus on quality content, adding subtle design changes to ensure that they do return.