As a content writer (or as a person suddenly put in charge of creating content for your company’s website), there will come a time when you will feel absolutely uninspired and drained of all words. You will believe that you have written everything there was to ever write about a specific topic, and you will be tapped out of new ideas.
This is the plight of every content writing professional.
For me, this happened during one of my first corporate jobs where I focused on content writing for a large medical organization. I loved my job, but after a while, writing about the same medical conditions for 75+ pages a month for almost a year completely drained me of any creativity or inspiration. My content was boring, redundant and unbearable. Yes, it worked for SEO, but I don’t think I was inspiring anyone to schedule an appointment at our facilities. There was just no sass to my content anymore, and I was tapped out of new ideas.
Maybe that’s where you are right now.
About a week ago, I attended an inbound marketing conference hosted by HubSpot (by the way, I strongly recommend ALL of their marketing classes and conferences). As people networked and asked what I do, I responded that I own a digital marketing company that focuses predominantly on content marketing. Unfortunately, there are not enough digital marketing companies that really put the time into content marketing, which is the foundation of ALL marketing strategies, but that’s another post for another day.
Anyway, the resounding question to me throughout the entire conference was “what do you do when your content writing about a topic gets boring?” Here is the answer I gave, and the answer that I hope will resurrect some of the creativity that you’ve lost in your own content writing.
There are three things you can do to push past the roadblock that is preventing you from good content writing:
1. Don’t overlook the emotions of your customers.
Too often, we as content writers focus more on the subject of the content and the keyword optimization than on the actual reader for whom we are writing. One of the most important lessons I ever learned in marketing is that EVERY purchase is driven by emotions. Whether it’s a new home or finding a pest control company for that new home, there is an emotional factor that drives people to pick one company over another.
Let me give you a real-life example. I spent the morning calling pest control companies for a quote to take care of my home. Florida in the summertime means bugs – and I HATE bugs. Now, as I am calling and researching pest control companies, I don’t care at all about the analytical knowledge and chemical composition of what they are spraying in my home. I don’t want to read industry technical knowledge; I just want to know that the pest control company is up to date on the industry standards. I care about three things:
- Can I trust this company to do a good job?
- Will using their services make my home safe again from the TERRIFYING beasts of Florida nature?
- Are these products safe for my dog to be around, or at least does the company care enough about their customers to provide information on what to do with my dog for however many hours after they spray the house?
You see, all three of those determining factors are based on the emotions of trust, security and care.
Think about your services through the eyes of your customers or prospects. What are some of the problems they are feeling that lead them to your door? Does your content address these emotional concerns thoroughly? If you start thinking through this lens, you may find new inspiration for your content writing.
In fact, I’m even going to share with you a content worksheet that we give all new clients. This worksheet is deceivingly simple, but when it’s done the right way, it can really help you focus in on the emotional needs of your prospects so you can gear your content writing to meet their concerns.
2. Get back to your roots.
Remember those target client worksheets you created will you first started down this content writing journey? If you have no idea what I’m talking about, please scroll up slightly and download the content writing worksheet I am offering.
The target client worksheet helps you identify – you guessed it – your target client demographic. Are you writing to predominantly males over the age of 50 or are you targeting young families with a household income of $75,000 – $150,000? What does this target demographic care about?
I remember when I was writing about medical conditions, one of the target demographics was retired men who enjoyed golfing. Whenever I ran out of steam and creativity with those conditions articles, I could think back to my audience and determine what a retired man who wants to play golf would enjoy reading about. What would inspire that man to call our facility? A targeted piece of content writing about the three ways fixing _____ spine condition could help your golf swing would be much more inspiring to the reader than a general article about the symptoms of that same condition.
Ask yourself these questions:
- Who am I writing for?
- What does this target audience care about, i.e. family time, kids, sports, etc.?
- How can I make my content writing speak to their interests?
Applying this thought pattern should help change your perspective on your content writing and break you out of your redundancy.
3. When you run out of words for evergreen content, think seasonally.
I think that problem the we as content writers run into is that we focus too much on producing evergreen content. Now, let me be clear: evergreen content is an important staple in any content strategy. But the purpose of evergreen content is to write about something that is unchanging – something that you can use time and again across multiple platforms. At some point, we run out of unchanging facts.
Fortunately, there is an equally important place for what I like to call “seasonal content” in every marketing strategy to break up the evergreen pieces. And when you’re completely out of words to write about a single topic, I like to take the phrase “seasonally” literally to give myself some new inspiration.
Here’s an example of what I mean:
During the same HubSpot conference I mentioned previously, a content writer for a local pool company asked me advice on how to approach the topic of resurfacing pools. He said he’d written everything there is to write about resurfacing a pool, and he’s completely out of energy on the subject.
So, I walked him through the three steps we are currently discussing. He said his target audience is families with young kids, income above $75,000 per household. He said he was focusing on blogs and pieces that could be shared across social media.
Here is what I told him:
- The emotional trigger for your target audience (young families) is to make memories with their kids. People put in pools to relax and to have fun. The emotions to touch on are safety for their family, future memories and (on some level) the expense factor of keeping their pool up to standard.
- It’s summertime. That means pool parties and barbecues. Use that to your advantage.
With this in mind, I gave him three ideas for his next pieces of content writing about pool resurfacing:
- Three reasons why you should resurface your pool before your next summer pool party
- Did you know that resurfacing your pool could protect your family from pool-related injuries?
- Three reasons why investing in pool resurfacing now could save your family money in the future
These articles hit on the three emotional triggers that the target audience is concerned about, while still adding creativity and relativity to the content. Because the topic of the content was not sacrificed, this piece will still serve as a key component in the company’s SEO strategy.
All of that to say, if you feel like your content writing is dull, dead and buried, there is still a chance to resurrect it by using the three tips we discussed today. If you have additional questions about content writing or are looking for certified content writers and inbound marketing strategists to help build your company into a digital powerhouse, contact Burg & Co. Marketing today.
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