Thursday, February 2, 2012

Save Your Content From Failing

Creating great content is not easy. It requires real efforts, knowledge, domain understanding and lot of dedication. A well written and executed content can build a lot of credibility for your brand. By content I mean the content in various forms such as a blog article, a presentation, a video, a whitepaper, a brochure or even a website.

Here are some of the reasons because of which, according to me, content can fail:

#1: Multiple Point of Views
Just as too many cooks spoil the broth, too many viewpoints can make a great piece of content highly non-useful. Your content needs to convey ONE strong message. It should not confuse the reader. Present one viewpoint and provide supporting material for the same. Multiple viewpoints will showcase your lack of understanding, as a writer, of the subject matter.

#2: No Proper Targeting
Of course you are writing for the audience. But who is your audience? Identify and zero in on whom are you targeting. That will help you address the needs, sentiments, emotions, understanding and knowledge of the audiences. You will be able to use THEIR language and that will make them connect and engage with your content and break the barriers. Writing for too broad an audience is not going to help.

#3: No Good Title
The title is the ‘first impression’. A well-written title will attract the readers to read your content and a poorly written title can make them ignore it. Make sure that you provide a very concise, specific, appealing and attention grabbing title to your content. It should convey the essence of the complete material and should convey what the content is going to present. Many a times, writers put up a fancy title just to attract readers but the real content is completely disconnected with the title. This is a fail strategy. Your title MUST be in sync with the content. Avoid making it too long or two short. Definitely don’t use non-standard abbreviations.  

#4: Spelling and Grammar Mistakes
Great idea, great content and great viewpoints – everything can fail if your content has spelling and grammar mistakes. I personally get put off by such content, no matter how interesting the topic is. I have seen commonly made mistakes with ‘it’s Vs its’, ‘affect Vs effect’, ‘Your Vs You’re’. Very simple things but make a huge impact. Please do pay special attention to these finer details before you finalize your copy.

#5: Long, Complex and Forgetting Content 
Many think that if the content sounds complex, it is going to win the hearts of the readers. Wrong. It is often seen that content which is simple to understand and comprehend and is interactive is more appreciated than long and forgetting content. Don’t be aloof. Make sure that you ‘converse’ with your readers through your content.

#6: No Promotion or Marketing Plan
What’s the use if your content is kept under the wraps and not promoted well? Only you will know that it is a great piece.  Go all about promoting it properly through appropriate channels. Gone are the days when businesses used to say ‘If I have built this great thing, people will come’. Today, in this age of information overload, appropriate promotion is essential

#7: Not Easy to Socially Share
Don’t make your content socially shy. Make is easy to share. You can’t reach out to all. If someone has liked your content, make it easy for that person to share the knowledge. Make life easy for them and encourage sharing. Social media plugins are extremely easy to integrate and create huge impact.

Hope this comes as a easy checklist for you next time you create any content. Have any more suggestions? Please add.

Happy Writing!


  1. This makes total sense...thanks to your bullet-wise articulation. I'm sure many would be able to take away lasting tips from here. You've covered it all - context, structure, correctness, users, marketing, naming, sharing, etc.

    Nice feature, Radha.

  2. @Vishal, @Gyanendra: Thanks for your comment! Glad you enjoyed the article.