Content writing can be a real test for writers. It’s important to recognize that the Web content is a particularly demanding type of writing. Despite the tedious, verbose garbage, the typos, and the other esoterica, there’s one basic fact – Nobody has to read anything online.
The only way you can get readers is by being worth reading. It doesn’t really matter if you’re writing about finance courses, wandering whales, or how to meet aliens, it still have to be worth reading.
As all writers should know, the fact is that writing is a matter of information, expression and value to the reader. It’s now an accepted axiom of copywriting that information must have value to the reader for anyone to even consider reading an article. This is where the concept “content is king” comes from, but if you have a look at some of the content, you’d have to wonder why.
Content writing issues
The requirements of good content are:
Information quality – Information must be new, relevant, and contain sufficient depth and scope for the target audience. If you’re writing to an expert audience, you really must write to their level. Do not dumb things down. It’s insulting to the readers, and it’s not likely to be very popular with the site owner or whoever commissioned the article.
Expression quality – It’s extremely important to use a unique style, with effective expression, avoiding clichés, and maintaining strong interest levels. Some people do know how to make the most interesting things murderously boring and un-interesting. There is nothing more guaranteed to turn off readers.
Expertise – One of the most important, and most frequently ignored facets of professional content writing is the need to provide insight. Expert writers can make any subject very clear and very easily. Writers floundering around with their subject, on the other hand, can make anything almost completely incomprehensible. The result of that is the lot of complaints from readers, all fully justified.
Motivation – A motivated writer can write well fluently clearly and with a great deal of imagination. And un-motivated writer will write like a dripping tap, and be almost as interesting. It’s a very good idea to target your content as close as possible to your own favourite subjects, where you have a lot of knowledge and real skills. This will also help with confidence and putting your ideas together coherently.
(A good idea – if you are not motivated don’t write. The result is quite likely to be horrendous, and just to add a further indignity, you’ll have to rewrite the whole thing.)
The writer as editor – when writing content, be absolutely brutal when editing your own material. This is a safeguard against poor quality, embarrassing things which you wish you had never written, and protects you from criticism which you would otherwise fully deserve.
It doesn’t really matter what the subject is. Anything can be made worth reading if you know how to write about the subject. A good article can make someone read about finance training even if that was the last thing on their minds. A bad article won’t be read even if people’s lives depend on it.
So be honest, do your best work, and recognize the needs of content writing. Everything else is comparatively easy.