SEO – 5 Vital Content Marketing Traits For Crafting Meaningful Content March 27, 2013 by Brett Prince It’s no secret that content marketing has become a vital part of SEO. In fact, your website won’t rank well in Google or truly resonate with people without creating meaningful content. It’s not overly difficult to create a piece of content. The tricky part is crafting content that works as marketing. When executed perfectly, content marketing is a win-win situation for both a person and a business. Persuasion can be a beautiful thing. Persuasion itself is as simple as helping people understand the benefit to them should they choose your solution. Where are you adding value? How does this understanding happen? The Art Of Explanation An effective content marketing strategy will get people to know, like, and trust your business. But it doesn’t stop there. As Lee Lefever has said, you’re dealing in the art of explanation, which ultimately lowers the cost of understanding. There’s no doubt that we live in a busy, noisy world. There’s so much data and information that it can be difficult to identify solutions to problems and desires that people want to fix and satisfy. In fact, the chosen solution is often one that is the simplest and clearest, often winning by default. A content marketing approach can help solve a person’s problem through education and is often the breakout winner. When it comes to content marketing, there are specific attributes that should be present with within your content if you want to be effective. Let’s take a look at the content marketing traits that are most important: 1. Empathy A common weakness among most people (and a lot of Internet marketers) is the failure of perspective – the inability to put themselves in another’s shoes. Oftentimes people assume that others see things in the same way that they do, whether it’s a personal preference or a larger, global view. Intelligent content marketers work to add perspective, to place themselves in the shoes of another, a trait that’s also known as empathy. The perspective of a target audience is what drives a content marketing strategy, and it’s important to leverage all of the little things as well as the way a prospective customer may view the world. 2. Curiosity Many people find it boring to discuss research, but to the content marketing elite, data and information can add depth to a piece of writing. By being driven to explore all facets of an audience they’re setting the stage to add true value. The best content marketers pride themselves in adopting the perspective of a prospect, creating content from that standpoint. The only way to make this happen is to research and learn everything you can about your target audience, including problems, questions and desires. 3. Observation Curiosity, research and observation are closely related, but it’s time to visit something that will take it to the next level. If information is in plain view, something everyone can see, how can you craft that information into something that’s unique? When it comes down to it, what can you do to explain that topic better than anyone else? How do you find the right metaphor, the right analogy, the right hook? It comes back to perspective. You need to analyze a subject and present it in a way that no one else has seen, turning it into something truly remarkable. 4. Packaging A unique perspective is step one when it comes to packaging information in a better, more efficient way. Elite content marketers are able to shift perspective, lowering the barrier to understanding by taking dry data and information that anyone can find and transforming it into a story that’s not only simple and clear, but that’s better. The foundational point is the substance of what you’re saying. How you say it is what will create separation between an average piece of content and a piece of exceptional writing. 5. Caring You guessed it, the best content marketers care. They’re invested in helping people truly understand, because if a prospective customer lacks understanding, they won’t be able to grasp the benefit of a product or service. Without understanding, there is no opportunity for persuasion. Perhaps the most important, a successful content marketer gets an audience to care. When understanding is present, people will care to follow the path that will lead them to doing business with you. If a person doesn’t care, the safe answer, “no”, will mean you have failed regardless of how perfect your solution may be. What’s The Why? The “why” is what it all comes down to. Why does the subject of your article matter? Why, most importantly, does it matter to your prospect? Why will your solution add value to that person’s life? If your prospective customer understands the “why,” magic happens. For one, you’re certainly more likely to gain that person’s business, however there is also a greater likelihood that they will share your content and solution with others. It’s also important to remember the second customer. This is someone who may not presently be in market for what you’re selling now, but if you have good content, you’re increasing your chances for that content to be shared with their network because it’s remarkably well done. The majority of businesses taking part in social media and that are online in general are invisible. It’s your mission to change that for those who have the honour of working with you. These traits will most certainly help you help them. Make it happen. What other elements do you think make for a successful content marketing strategy?