It's SO frustrating when you spend ages creating content only for nobody to interact with it, isn't it?! The process of content creation is so much more than just writing or recording then scheduling. It takes a lot to go from idea to publish. That's why it's vital that as part of your content strategy you validate, evaluate and course-correct.
Today I'm sharing my top tips on how to create engaging content for your audience which will help to increase your confidence and give you a great return on your investment of time, energy and maybe even money!
1. Host Q&As
By far, the easiest way to come up with content ideas when your audience doesn't engage is by doing Q&As, especially when you host them live. Sharing the answers in real time shows you can think on your feet and don't shy away.
Even if you only get one question each time, it's ok. This gives you a starting point to think about what else your audience should know. It's a technique used by entrepreneurs like Gary Vaynerchuk and a great way to create content even when you don't know what to post.
2. Share Things You Wish You Knew
Put yourself in their shoes by reflecting on what you know now and how that would have impacted your journey as an individual, company or even how the product/service evolved if you had known it before. Having been there, done that is really inspiring and sparks engagement from those who want to be where you are or who are looking to build trust in what you offer.
If you haven't personally been there, that's ok too. You don't have to try to share things you don't know about. Collaborate by inviting someone else to share this with your audience.
3. Run A Survey With An Incentive
There are some barriers to engaging which your audience might not like to share publicly. Create an opportunity for them to do this anonymously by sharing their problems, questions and thoughts.
Offer something really valuable to them which is perfect for your target audience to show you appreciate their time to complete your feedback form. Choose something different than a discounted product/service of yours to gain their trust and engagement.
4. Change The Format And/Or The Channel
It might not be the topic which is the problem as to why they aren't engaging. Perhaps you are writing blog posts/emails when your audience prefers Facebook Live. This comes from knowing your target audience, but also from trial and error.
Where possible, create content in various mediums so you can test what works. Try different angles and lengths, but don't forget your objective - why are you putting this content out there in the first place?
5. Have Real 1:1 Conversations
Focusing on Facebook Messenger or WhatsApp is one of the hottest marketing trends for 2018 and this is exactly the reason why... It provides an opportunity for you to have personal interactions and get the direct feedback you need.
Identify your target audience (including influencers) and ask them what they want from you and what obstacles there are to them engaging with what you are sharing. Take this constructively and update them as you try it!
6. Go To Where The Questions Are Already Being Asked
Wherever your target audience is most active, you will find exactly what you need to start creating content your audience engages with. Creating content is primarily about solving a problem so locate where they are asking questions and sharing their challenges (such as Facebook Groups, Quora and Amazon 3-star book reviews).
From delivering "Office Hours" training sessions where you choose one question/problem to focus on to writing a pillar article combining everything into an ultimate guide, you already know your audience want to know this so the likelihood of engagement is increased.
7. Deliver The Opposite Type of Content
There are two core reasons why people consume content online - for information and inspiration. If you have been concentrating on one more than the other, it's possible your audience aren't getting all they want and need from you.
Providing inspiration in the form of sharing your own stories, photos, live streams and quotes helps your potential clients and customers to feel more connected to you and build the know/like/trust factor. Whereas giving information demonstrates you really know your stuff. Try switching it up to encourage your audience to engage.
Bonus! How Many Steps Are There To Engaging?
Take your audience member's journey... which barriers can you identify? Are your audience needing to take too many steps to like/share/comment? Are you confusing them with too many calls to action or maybe you don't use any call to action?
Also think about how engaging the content is - would YOU interact with it?
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