The importance of good content cannot be overlooked. Whether it’s written, verbal, visual, or experiential, it all evokes an emotional response. This can be positive or negative. We’ve written about the first impression your website can make on a potential customer and this is also true for every other brand touchpoint you control.
What you write, say, or post online, offline, or standing on the front line, shows your customers the content of your brand’s character.
There is a common misconception that brand is not much more than a logo and the colours used in an organisation’s website and promotional material. But the true value of a well designed brand goes much deeper. When dealing with people, we go beyond looks to the heart of the person. The same is also true when selecting which brand to invest in.
Every single time a customer comes into contact with your team or brand, it builds a picture of who you are as an organisation. They get an idea of what you stand for, what you care about and what they are likely to get when they deal with you and your team.
So you want to make sure you’re doing content right, right? Let’s explore what it takes to build and maintain a brand that your customers want to engage with.
We’ve all heard it and have probably said it at some point, but you can’t argue with the phrase “Failing to plan is planning to fail”. Having a plan that includes different messaging for different seasons and overall story development, as well as the more detailed tactics will make it a lot easier than sitting with a blank page at the start of every day.
Know your people
Make sure you understand your people. This includes your employees, stakeholders and your customers, or other intended audience. You need to get to know them, what makes them tick and understand what problem they want you to solve. Only then can you communicate with them about how your product or service can benefit them. Note that we include employees and contractors in this, because if they are being looked after then they will go out of their way to convey your brand’s message.
Consistency of messaging, tone of voice and brand representation across all your content is crucial to achieving solid brand awareness among existing, as well as potential customers. Remember, your target market can come into contact with your brand across any number of platforms and you don’t want there to be any confusion in the key message, or disconnection from the experience in one space to another.
Storytelling is an art. Each piece of content should form part of your unique story. But remember it’s not just your story, people want to know what’s in it for them. So weave your customer into your story by highlighting the benefits of using your product or service. But please, please don’t make every social media post an opportunity to sell, sell, sell. Instead ask yourself if every post is offering something that the audience will value. Sometimes that will happen to be the product/service solution to a problem they are facing.
Keep it real
That story I mentioned earlier that you should tell? It should be your organisation’s true story. People make a very quick judgement call about whether an organisation is authentic in its content. Transparency across the board. No one believes that everything always comes up roses. If your social media feed is all one sided, your customers may begin to lose trust in you. So make sure you use a critical lens on your content and include some of the other side of your experiences. Whether it’s a story about learning from a recent failure, or a fun, blooper reel from a recent project, share the good with the bad. This will make your brand more ‘human’.
Share and share alike and give credit where it’s due
Not every single piece of content you share on social media needs to be your own. Sometimes someone else has said something absolutely perfectly and you want to support their idea by sharing it with your own audience. But to maintain an ethical approach to your activity, if you do share someone else’s work, please, please give them credit. That way you’re supporting them too.
Use plain English
People are put off by jargon. Using the latest industry speak may seem impressive to you and your team, but it can make someone turn off your content as fast as a switch does to a light. You may think industry jargon gives you credibility, but what you’re aiming for is approachability. If someone doesn’t understand your content they’re not going to hold out much hope of a smooth or easy process when dealing with you.
So, are you content with your content?
If this article has sparked some ideas and you’d like to talk them through, give us a call.