Any kind of marketing strategy – from Facebook™ ads to guest posting – relies on one cornerstone element: content. Your lead generation and sales efforts need written, audio and video content and you need to have a constant flow of new pieces of content ready to deploy.
But just as strategies for effective email marketing and social media marketing evolve, so does content writing. Simply put, you need to learn new skills and incorporate them in your content if you want it to work. The reason for this is that the average person – your potential customer – has changed the way they consume content and what they expect from it.
What Makes Content Writing Different in 2019?
The cyber world is a Wild West landscape where quality content coexists with clickbait and fake news. People have become suspicious and question everything. They need reassurances that your content is genuine, in the sense that it provides accurate information they can trust.
At the same time, the rise of mobile phones as primary devices for internet browsing and content consumption has influenced the way people interact with content. Thus, you will have to adapt your content writing style to fit these new consumption patterns.
In practical terms, these are the skills you will have to master in 2019 if you want to create quality and effective content:
1. Advanced Research Skills
As we’ve mentioned above, the internet is rife with fake news and half truths. It is very likely to stumble upon something that looks like a hot topic to include in your content. Unfortunately, it is just an unconfirmed rumour or even a fabricated story.
The only way of steering clear of this type of fake news is learning how to discriminate between reliable and unreliable sources. You must learn to go deep with your research, find confirmations from trusted websites and from industry leaders’ websites and social media accounts. Research before you write will be one of the top skills for effective content writing this year.
2. Incorporating Voice Search Principles in Your Content
Voice search is quickly replacing the text box in Google. The Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, Apple Siri are opening the way for a new and simpler way for people to search for information.
How does this apply to content writing? Exactly in the manner in which we incorporated the question in this article – by adding questions in your content that sound like people asking the voice assistant for information. The voice assistants perform searches just like the Google algorithm – they look for relevant keywords. If your content has a perfect match for the person’s question, it will rank higher in the results.
3. SEO Copywriting According to the Latest Google Algorithm
SEO writing is no longer what it used to be. It is not enough to optimise your text with the right keywords in the right proportion. Google has been tricked by irrelevant content that uses popular keywords and it has drastically changed the rules of the game.
The current algorithm takes into account the context in which keywords are used, as well as the user’s intent when looking for information. This means that long tail and LSI keywords will become more and more important. At the same time, you should pay more attention to the way you structure your content. The age of writing for the search engine alone is long gone – you have to write for what users want to read.
4. Working with AI
Artificial intelligence is here and it is going nowhere. All the automated software suites that help you schedule and track your social media posts, monitor your brand reputation and spy on your competitors incorporate AI. And they will become increasingly smarter and more complex.
We are already using chatbots on websites and on Messenger. These chatbots do not interact with human users without training and without learning how to ask questions and answer them. They need, among others, a content writer to teach them these basic socialising skills. Sooner or later, your business will need a chatbot – so you must know how to teach it to talk to your customers.
5. Understanding the New Customer Journey
The customer journey is perilous and fraught with dangers at every point: distraction, a more tempting offer from your competitors, switching devices as the person goes back home from work, etc.
Your content writing skills must weave a web of persuasion that keeps the lead on their journey, makes your brand memorable and gives them the answers they need – even before they know they need these answers. Your content strategy has to be one step ahead any potential disruption and prepare the ground for the big moment – the first purchase.