If They’re Not Interested, You’re Not Interesting

Posted on Jul 14, 2017 3:07:20 PM by Carolyn Hansen

There are certain products and services that are just fun to market. But there are many more products and services that just aren’t, well, sexy. Does that mean that they should have boring marketing content? Absolutely not. All content has the potential to be interesting. In fact, it needs to be interesting to be effective.

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If you are creating content as part of your marketing plan and it’s not effective, take a closer look. Is it possible that you're not working hard enough to make it interesting (or find the most interesting stuff)?

Signs That Users Don’t Find Your Content Interesting

It can be hard to identify boring content, especially if you work in the business daily. It’s easy to lose perspective and to start creating content that misses the mark. Here are some signs to look for:

  • Low organic traffic. You’re writing about things that seem important to your business and you may even be doing keyword research, but you aren’t getting the high volumes of organic traffic that you’d like. If this is the case, your focus could be off. Maybe what you’re writing about isn’t interesting or relevant to people who would make well-qualified leads. If people aren’t searching for it, it might not be worth blogging about. If people are searching for it but not clicking on your site, it might be an interesting topic but not one that is relevant to people who might be interested in you.

  • High abandonment rates. If you are getting clicks but a large percentage of people are abandoning your site without engaging, you might have a problem with boring content. A high abandonment rate could mean that people don’t like what they see when they get to your site. Maybe it’s not what they expected. Maybe it’s not interesting enough to keep the on the site. Either way, it might be time for some soul searching.

  • Short time on site. If the average user spends only a few seconds and sees only one or two pages, you might be lacking the kind of content that keeps a person reading more. Maybe there are no levels of content – no next steps or conversion opportunities – for people to take once they get to the page.

  • Low social engagement. If nobody is commenting on or sharing the things you post on social media, your social posts could be boring to your readers. When was the last time someone commented on a blog post? When was the last time you were retweeted? Has anyone linked to you lately?

How to Become More Interesting

Becoming more interesting can be challenging because it’s a matter of perspective. You’ll need to take a fresh look at your content strategy to figure out what’s interesting to your website users.

So, what is interesting to your website users? One of the best ways to find out is to – wait for it – wait for it – just ask. Find them and ask them what they think of your content. Ask them informally in person as you’re interacting with them, ask them in an onsite survey, ask them in an email survey, or even conduct a focus group. It’s about switching your focus from what you want to tell people to what they want to hear.

Once you get to know your users, you can begin to develop a more complete picture of what they’re looking for. You may end up using new information to refine your personas. Keep that persona in mind as you create new content for your site. Make sure that the new content you’re posting works for that person:

  • Is it interesting to your persona?
  • Is it relevant?
  • Is it timely?
  • Is it unique?

It might be a good idea to test the content you’re creating to look for insights. An A-B test might tell you which version of a headline resonates more with your users or what to emphasize in a call to action. Web-based tools like Hotjar can track mouse movements and scrollbar usage, so you can see how many people actually make it all the way through your blog posts.

It’s a good idea to come to the data with questions. Which blog posts did people read the most of? Which ones were more likely to be shared? What kinds of content are your most well-qualified leads reading just before they pick up the phone?

These actions can help you be as interesting as possible – even if you’re not creating content for a traditionally “interesting” product or service. A well-done blog post on a very dry topic might be fascinating to the right people if you just keep the right people in mind.

Storytelling for Businesses

Posted in Content Marketing, Storytelling, Buyer Personas

Carolyn Hansen
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