In this post...
Believe it or not, there's more to creating winning content than having great writing skills. Here, I outline the three elements you need even more than great writing to create winning content—content that leads more people to say YES to your offers.
Winning in a digital world is one part writing, three parts content
Are you a coach, consultant, or other expert who worries that the secret to creating winning sales and marketing content lies with the writing?
Yes, it is true that there's something magical about a well-written piece that effortlessly guides readers to the necessary conclusion that "YES! Yes, this is the right purchase for me."
Yet it is also true that other elements must be in place or that effortless journey will never happen for those readers to begin with.
In my mind, a perfect piece of content needs four elements to be successful:
- Solid writing
- The right content
- The right readers
- The right times in the buyer's journey
Let's ignore the upper left quadrant for a moment—the solid writing.
If you have the right content, and you get it to the right people, at the right times in their buying journeys, then it really won't matter if your writing isn't world-class stellar.
It's this way in direct mail, too, which also has four factors that determine the success or failure of a project:
- The mailing list
- The product or service
- The offer itself
- The copy
Those factors, IN THAT ORDER, determine the success or failure of a direct mail piece.
In other words, if you have 1) the world's best, most well-written, enthusiastic, cry-me-a-river direct mail letter, one that somehow makes wallets climb out of people's purses and pockets, but also have 2):
- The wrong list ... then the people who need to read that stellar writing won't ever see it. You'll be mailing to the wrong people.
- The wrong product or service ... then the people who do read your stellar writing won't buy it because it's not the right product or service for them.
- The wrong offer ... ditto ... then the people who read won't buy because your offer doesn't entice or promise the right benefits and value.
BUT, if you have the right list, the right product or service, and the right offer, then the writing itself will play a small part in someone's buy or no-buy decision.
Think about it.
If you're on someone's website, absolutely drooling at whatever they're selling, will you really care if their content doesn't cause you to gasp with pleasure?
You'll buy DESPITE the writing.
You'll forgive a multitude of typos and grammar errors, thinking to yourself that maybe the author lacks an advanced college degree, or that the writer was actually a virtual assistant who put the page together on the owner's behalf, and maybe the owner was so busy that he or she simply didn't have the time to check each piece of content that the virtual assistant created.
Do you see what's going on there?
Do you see how you might tell yourself stories about why the writing is not stellar?
You do it because you REALLY want the product or service on offer!
You do NOT want to turn away for as lousy a reason as someone's "writing."
Maybe I'm writing myself out of a job here because, after all, I make my living helping people create content for their businesses.
But really, I just want to encourage you.
If you're not in line for a literary prize, who cares? (I'm not in line for one, either.)
Worry more about the other things that weigh more heavily: The right people, the right content, and the right time.
THEN ... when that foundation is solid, you can worry about and work on your writing.
But please! Don't let your writing hold you back.
Now go on ... go!
Get out there and create winning content for your business!