No one reads anymore.
Start with that premise and you start to make better decisions about your content marketing strategy. I’m not saying you don’t have to know how to write anymore, you definitely do, just in a different way. Not like a traditional writer, more like a long-form copywriter. Your writing has to be brief, compelling and engaging (copy, right?).
KEEP IT SHORT AND FORMATTED AND THEY MIGHT READ
Sometimes I think, can a one paragraph blog post really tell the whole story? Maybe not, but does it matter, if anything longer no one’s reading – whole story or not? I don’t care if you’re Shakespeare, if no one’s reading, no one’s reading. So it’s up to you to package your story in a way that will actually reach the reader. Only then will you have the chance of having any real influence.
Just remember, writing is just like any other area of digital life: information is speeding by in such an abundance and so fast you have to package your content in a way that:
- isn’t going to make the user work
- is so instantly appealing that the user is dying to share it with their entire network
Organizing your information with headers, bullets and lists will also help the reader understand your information more easily, thus reducing information overload anxiety. A bulleted list turns down the information volume and gives the user a break.
A PICTURE REALLY IS WORTH A THOUSAND WORDS
Support your brief copy with compelling imagery and what you get is magic. Especially in social media. And if the image is cool enough you can basically assume no one is reading your copy anyway, but instead tripping over themselves to share your image (you) with their entire network.
When your user is excited about your content, they care less about your message and more about sharing the image and thus becoming cool by association. In this case, one sentence will due, with the more important words capitalized, since you may get LUCKY and a word or two might slip in during the act of SHARING.
BETTER FOR EVERYONE
I’m sure traditional long form writers are horrified by this development, since purists rarely see the benefit of fundamental changes to their industry. They’ll look back nostalgically on the ‘lost art’ of writing. But I think long-form copywriting is just as nobel as normal writing – maybe more so. By writing in a way that is highly accessible to the reader (user) you have more of a chance of influencing large groups of people, in a positive way, and not just bookish types who love pouring over thousand word essays.
Luckily, the world is becoming more economical. This philosophy is coming through in many ways, not just the materials we reuse or the resources we save, but also in the digital content we create and consume ❥