Is it time for you to do a content audit?
2022 is fully off and running now. We’re about halfway through the first quarter. It might be time to reassess your 2022 content strategy now that it’s had time to work for a few weeks, but before we really get deep into the year.
A content audit can mean a few things, but basically, it’s just a way of stopping and checking yourself.
Look at the metrics you’ve gathered. How’s your content doing? How does it perform week-to-week? Is engagement trending upwards or downwards?
More importantly: would you read it?
As a writer, I can say that this question is a good gut-check. If you’re bored with your own content, other people probably are too. If I’m bored writing it, you’re probably bored reading it.
Is it Boring?
It sounds like a harsh question. But it’s worth asking. If your articles are tedious, of course they might not perform well.
What if it is boring?
Don’t worry too much. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself. Every writer’s been there (except maybe William Faulkner). You’re pressed for time. You’re stressed out. You churn out some piece of internet-speak to meet a deadline. It’s okay. It happens.
If you decide that your content is boring, congratulations. You’ve learned something. You know that it can be improved. You may even have a clear path to improving it.
If your posts are fire, but they’re still not performing well, it’s harder to figure out what the problem is. If your posts are lame, well, then you know how to improve their performance. Make them un-lame.
But How Do You Do That?
“Just make your content less boring.”
That’s easier said than done.
So, what are a few strategies you can actually use to write more interesting articles and design more intriguing posts?
1. Bring More Humanity into Your Voice
Ditch the jargon. Lose the corporate-speak. Write like the real human being that you are.
Note: this isn’t just, “write like you talk,” which is a common bit of advice given to copywriters. You may not talk the way your audience talks. You want to write like they talk. But, more importantly, showing emotion and feeling in your content is a better way of having a “human voice” than just throwing in some slang to make trite points.
Take a stand. Maybe even do something controversial.
2. Outsider Perspectives
Voices from outside your organization can offer fresh perspectives and help you mix up your content. Freelancers, influencers, contributors from other organizations (who might reciprocate by hosting you at a later date), and thought leaders in your industry can all give you those fresh points of view.
3. Try Asking Your Staff for Fresh Ideas
Ask around your organization. What do your employees care about? What stories can they tell?
Your workers can give you those fresh ideas that can help you to ditch the boring content. And maybe, just maybe, you could even try letting them write content for you, too.
Just Do Something
It really doesn’t matter what you try, if your content’s boring, you need to change things. But also, if it’s boring, almost anything you try will be an improvement. At least it will be different.
Now, maybe your audit confirms that you’re already doing everything right when it comes to content marketing.
Or maybe you find that it’s perfectly fine, but there are a couple of ways you could tinker around the edges to make it better.
But maybe you fail your audit. In which case, you’re in luck, because – just like the U.S. healthcare system – almost anything you do will be better than letting it stay the same. Truly terrible content marketing is also the easiest to move in a better direction.
But before you know just where your content ranks on the scale from three poop emojis to ten fire emojis, you need to do the audit.
So ask yourself: do I enjoy reading this?