You’ve heard it over and over again: “quality content”. It’s a common marketing mantra. Everyone should be producing it: publishers, retailers, even accounting firms… everyone. The adage “Content is King” is as old as time itself, or so it seems. But there are several valid and urgent reasons why marketers should focus a bit more on their content strategies this year.
But it’s easier said than done, right?
What is quality content? Why does content play such a huge role in email marketing, especially in the professional services realm? How do we generate it consistently and cost-effectively?
What is Quality Content?
Quality content comes in many shapes and sizes. Sometimes, it’s a multi-bylined whitepaper. Sometimes, it’s a million dollar viral video. But essentially, quality content is any component within your message that provides recognizable value to the recipient. Value can be interpreted (and more importantly, is perceived) as helpfulness, entertainment and/or emotional impact.
Quality content could be a short paragraph that offers a tip or suggestion for using a product or handling a problem (helpfulness). Or a witty cartoon included in your e-newsletter or email blast (entertainment). Or a video of the managing partner stumbling across the Find a Cure marathon finish line, while his family shouts and cheers from the sidelines (emotional impact).
Frequently, the emotional tie-in is overlooked when marketers develop content. Emotion can be evoked not only through the content itself (such as the marathon video), or from the context for that content. The style, design, personality and delivery mechanism will each affect the impact. The context and setting change the perceived quality of the content. A video of the managing partner stumbling over the threshold of the local bar with fellow drinkers cheering him on is the same quality as the charitable photo-finish video.
The opportunities for quality content are not limited to Pulitzer Prize nominations or multi-million dollar viral ads. They are all around us, waiting for us to seize the moment and take advantage of them. Think about what your recipients WANT to read about, hear about, learn and see. What will be helpful to them? What will they find entertaining? What will tug at their heart strings?
The answers to those any of those three questions will result in quality content.