There are many ways to distribute and market content but before this can happen, you must make sure that your content is valuable and substantial. This blog is meant to help content creators and marketing teams create commendable content and to guide you through this subject, we will identify with a Creating Valuable Content Checklist.This checklist defines valuable content through five benchmarks: findable, readable, understandable, actionable, and shareable.
The 5 Benchmarks of the Valuable Content Checklist Broken Down:
- It is important to implement the right SEO best practices to write or create findable content. You should choose keywords that will be most effective for your content.
- Use one h1 tag and multiple h2 tags because they help break up text on a page and benefit search engine rankings (For those of you who have no idea what this means: H tags are size specifiers for fonts – h1 is the largest and it goes to h6 which is the smallest)
- Customize the metadata (title, descriptors & keywords) to describe the content on the page pursuant to your keyword analysis
- Include links to other pages on the site to increase the value of the content that web crawlers allocate to your pages (Web Crawling software is used by search engines to update web content or indexes of other sites’ web content)
- Include alt tags on your images so they come up in image searches and use them to plug your content. Alt tags were primarily designed for the visually impaired so it is important to describe the picture in the image
- The most important thing to consider about readability is that users scan until they find the content they are looking for which is why the follow bullets are necessary
- The inverted pyramid writing style shows the most important information at the top and funnel the rest of the information according to level of importance
- Chunking means keeping the length of paragraphs short. One metric commonly followed is to have no more than three sentences in a paragraph, and no more than three paragraphs under one heading.
- Bullets and numbered lists are helpful for when people want to obtain information quickly
- Following the style guide can help keep your content consistent by assuring that everyone is on the same page
- Choose the right content type for what you are trying to say, for example, sometimes a video or a slideshow might better convey your content better than written text would
- Create user personas for your different audiences and match the level of the content’s complexity to the user’s ability to understand it
- Always provide context even when explaining the most basic concepts to your users because you never know when someone is just joining the conversation
- Apply a standard reading level to your content based on marketing research and user personas. What makes perfect sense to you might be confusing for your users (Microsoft Word has a function that tests reading levels)
- Provide valuable information to your user by conveying new information or a new way of articulating an old idea (metaphors are very useful!)
- Include a call to action to ensure your users can act on your content
- Make it easy for users to comment or ask questions, for example, if you accept comments on a certain web page, make sure that page is easily accessible. Also, enable blog comments or direct users to your Facebook or Twitter page
- Include an invitation for users to share your content by requesting that they please share the content with those who they think might enjoy it
- Include a list of actionable items at the top if the content is long, for example, at the top of this blog post I quickly listed the five benchmarks that this post later elaborates on. It is important to summarize what content will be touched upon at the beginning of the page.
- Consider provoking an emotional response in your readers because people are more likely to share controversial topics and information
- Illustrate the benefit of sharing the content within the content. For example, you may tell a story about how sharing your company’s marketing strategy with a friend helped them change their company’s marketing strategy for the better
- Ask to share, after all, you won’t get what you want if you don’t ask for it
- Make sharing easy by working with your developers to research which sharing widget is best for your company.
- Personalize sharing by allowing users to customize their sharing efforts, for example, when retweeting, Twitter lets users customize the tweet by allowing them to add hashtags
Click here to Download the Creating Valuable Content Checklist!
Did this checklist help you create more valuable content? Tell us in the comments!