28 Attributes of Good Content Marketing to Rock Your Social Business!

iStock 000007682145XSmall1 28 Attributes of Good Content Marketing to Rock Your Social Business! Content marketing is the new buzzword. However, the truth is content marketing has been around for decades, since conversations and business have existed. Content marketing is not a new shiny object invented via social media. I wrote a piece on the topic you can check out here.

Is everyone really a content expert?

Every marketer, consultant, tweeter and Facebooker around seems to be talking about content marketing. Unfortunately very few of them have ever done it themselves or really know how to help others write or integrate content to drive real results.

If you are working with a social media consultant or agency be sure to look behind the magic curtain. Do they have a blog of their own? When is the last time they wrote good content? Is anyone reading the content? Is the content getting shared? Is it integrated with the rest of their business or is it an add-on band-aid? When is the last time they sent an email to the list of names they have been collecting via their blog the past year? Do they have an editorial calendar or any rhyme or reason to why and how they are using content marketing, if at all?

It’s similar to the concept of the Facebook page pushers of a year ago who were bashing “strategy” telling customers all you need to do is tweet and get a Facebook page for $1k with a side of a website that tweets for another $2k. It’s funny how now overnight they are all “strategy experts” yet in checking their career profile you’ll find they have spent little time to none actually ever doing strategy for any real business.

You get what you pay for with any service or product. The best thing you can do is educate yourself the best you can and do your research. It doesn’t have to be more expensive or take more time to do it right. Chances are finding a resource with the right experience to help your business will save you money and bring a higher return than many of the fly by night social media operations.

Becoming a social business is not the same thing as doing social media or being social. Social business requires integration of processes, mindset changes and direct investment in specific goals and objectives.

iStock 000009305021Small 200x300 28 Attributes of Good Content Marketing to Rock Your Social Business! What is content marketing?

Content marketing is an umbrella term encompassing all marketing formats that involve the creation and sharing of content in order to engage current and potential consumer bases. Content marketing subscribes to the notion that delivering high-qualityrelevant and valuable information to prospects and customers drives profitable consumer action. Content marketing has benefits in terms of retaining reader attention and improving brand loyalty.
*Source: Wikipedia

Content marketing is a marketing technique of creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attractacquire, and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience – with the objective of driving profitable customer action.
*Source: Content Marketing Institute

I know what it is, now what?

I like simplify where many want to complicate. Below are what I believe to be the top attributes for content marketing that will drive results.

If you have spent any time working in marketing then this should seem like common sense to you.

Bottom line you want to develop content that inspires and connects with your audience with a goal of bringing them closer to you and your brand. You want them to click, double click, share, and come back for more.

28 Attributes of Content Marketing that Rocks! 

rock your blog sm 300x212 28 Attributes of Good Content Marketing to Rock Your Social Business! 1. Goal Driven - Set goals and objectives for each piece. Is the goal to inspire, educate, establish authority, generate leads? Should support higher level business and marketing goals and objectives.

2. Audience focused – Content must be focused on the reader more so than your own self promotion. Know your audience. Know what they want, need, desire. Get in their head and connect with them via content that helps them in business and/or life.

3. Findable – If your target audience can’t find it, it’s all for nothin’!

4. Shareable – Make it easy for people to share with their friends on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, email, etc.

5. Simple – Shouldn’t require a PHD in rocket science to understand.

6. Authoritative – Author speaks and writes from knowledge, experience and authority.

7. Engages – People are inspired to click, double click, comment and become part of the community.

8. Actionable – Should be clear what action the reader should take to learn more, join community, contact you for further information, hire you, request proposal etc.

9. Real – Should have a healthy balance of transparency, authenticity and professionalism.

10. Believable – There should be no doubt that they can trust you and believe what you say. Many factors play a role with this including design & layout of site, source of content, grammar, quality of information, authority and more.

11. Validated – If facts, data, or stats are used the source is clearly provided and all can be validated as truth. This will also help establish authority and ensure content is believable.

12. Valuable – Provides reader with valuable content to help them learn, grow or be inspired.

13. Relevant – Should  be relevant to where the reader is in business or life.

14. Resonates – Should invoke a feeling of shared emotion or belief with the reader.  They should understand and be able to relate to the content, context and meaning.

15. Compelling – Grabs attention, unique enough to read, understand, persuade, change thinking and remember.

16. Integrated – Not stand alone information. You brand, expertise, experience, services offered should support the content to best establish authority, believability etc.

17. Educational – Provides value in regard to knowledge and teaching of a topic reader is interested in.

18. Passionate – Should be obvious the writer is passionate about topic and is not just writing to drive blog traffic or other objectives.

19. Positive – Who wants to read a blog that does nothing but complain? Not many people. Content should be positive and make the person feel better, know more and be inspired to do more whenever possible.

20. Forward thinking – Should not dwell in the past, old technology but should at minimum be present day and preferrably forward thinking. Take people along with where you are going if you are visionary person.

21. Inspires – Inspire readers to learn more, do more, be more and become one with you and your brand.

22. Connects – Inspires the reader to connect with you and your brand. Your goal is to build and nurture a relationship with them.

23. Achieves – Helps the reader achieve their goals. If you focus first on helping reader achieve their goals, you will achieve yours by default.

24. Purposeful – The content has a purpose, is not rambling, meaningless mumbo jumbo.

25. Brand loyalty – Content should help drive brand loyalty with reader. The content should be a good represenation of your brand, personality and not a glossy piece of corporate collateral from the 1990’s that describes what you wish you would be when you grow up.

26. Quality – Content is of high quality. Should not be written in a hurry, have grammatical errors or read like it was written by a 5th grader.

27. Open – Author is open to other ideas, willing to enter into a healthy debate and genuinely listen to differing opinions.

28. Conclusive – It has an end. It doesn’t just ramble and ramble but it is clear when the content piece starts and ends.

 

Avoid the following: 

1. Focusing too much on sales. You don’t want to sound like a used car sales person.
2.  Overly opinionated.
3. Closed minded.
4. Argumentative. Don’t bite the fingers off of your readers who may comment with a differing opinion. Be open to new ideas and opinions.
6. Egotistical.
7. Self promotion.
8. Random Acts of Marketing – If it’s not in the budget, not in the plan and not integrated then chances are it’s a RAM. RAMs will eat every last dollar of your ROI for lunch, breakfast & dinner. Avoid them at all cost!

 

iStock 000011885996Small2 300x166 28 Attributes of Good Content Marketing to Rock Your Social Business! Your Turn? 

What do you think? Do you agree with these attributes? What ones would you add? What content inspires and connects with you? What are your favorite blogs or content creators that capture your attention?

 Additional resources: 

Worksheet: Download our POST audience analysis worksheet to help you identify and prioritize your top audiences. It is based upon the Forrester POST methodology.

Blog Post: Content marketing is not a new shiny object invented via social media

Blog Post: 15 Reasons Random Acts of Marketing & Social Media Don’t Work (Marketing Nutz)

Blog Post: You Can’t Fake Relevance in Social Media, Business & Life

Blog Post:  Is Your Content Worthy of a Like, Share, Pin, Retweet or Google +1? (includes definition of content marketing)

Blog Post: Social Media Buzz, the False Perception of Social Media Success

 Blog Post: Are You Ignoring the Social Inspiration People Metrics?

Blog Post: Inspiration Made Simple: Pick 3 Things

Report/ Blog Post: Content and the new Marketing Equation (Brian Solis)

Blog Post: The Definition of Social Business

Website: Content Marketing Institute

 

About the Author

Pam Moore

*Forbes Top 10 Social Media Women, Forbes top 50 Social Media Power Influencer - CEO / founder of Marketing Nutz, full service social brand, digital marketing agency. Social media marketing speaker, author, strategist, consultant, coach, & trainer. I help businesses of all size integrate social media into the DNA of their business, connect with target audiences to nurture authentic customer relationships. 15+ years experience working with Fortune 500, Franchised corporations with 4000+ local franchises to entrepreneurs and startups!

  • MobileProsUSA

    @PamMktgNut sms marketing is a great way for a business to reach customers http://t.co/B90neEg8

  • AshleyKime

    Great post Pam, thx for sharing! RT @PamMktgNut 28 Attributes of Good Content Marketing to Rock Your Social Business! http://t.co/bSLsSZ6f

  • Sandy Richardson
  • http://kikolani.com/ Kristi Hines

    Awesome list and resources Pam!

    • http://www.pammarketingnut.com/ PamMktgNut

       @Kristi Hines Thanks so much Kristi! That means a lot coming from you. I am a huge fan of your work! Appreciate the comment and share! 

  • PamMktgNut

    @NetResults thanks so much for the share! :-)

  • PamMktgNut

    @AskAaronLee thanks buddy! How ya be?

    • AskAaronLee

      @PamMktgNut My pleasure! i’m great! have not slept yet though, its 6:30am now lol! how are you Pam?

      • PamMktgNut

        @AskAaronLee ha! I have done that before! With the 24/7 convo it’s so hard not to! Any fun plans this wknd (besides sleep?) ;)

        • AskAaronLee

          @PamMktgNut Nothing much actually, finishing some blog post and hoping to find time to actually read a book. What about you?

  • PamMktgNut

    @BrennerMichael thanks Michael!

  • http://www.vikingmarketingsolutions.ie/ UrbanRenstrom

    A very thorough post
    Obviously you are a content marketing expert. Really enjoyed the post.

    • http://www.pammarketingnut.com/ PamMktgNut

       @UrbanRenstrom Awww thanks! Yes, I worked on this one over the course of a week via the iPhone/ iPad. Put a lot of thought into the attributes chosen.  Glad you liked it :) 

  • PamMktgNut

    @socialmouths thanks a mill Francisco!

  • PamMktgNut

    @janetcallaway thanks Janet! How are you? Haven’t seen you around much! Two tweeting ships passing in the night! ;)

  • MobileProsUSA

    @sbhsbh sms marketing is a great tool for reaching customers http://t.co/B90neEg8

  • PamMktgNut

    @AliSABKAR @socialmouths thank you both! :-)

  • PamMktgNut

    @Liveinsights thanks for the share!! @AskAaronLee

  • http://www.AdamBritten.com/ AdamBritten

    Nice tips, as always. I particularly like that you encourage people to validate what they are claiming. So often bloggers/content marketers/people make lists of “the 10 most effective…” or include claims that certain strategies boost numbers, etc. But then they provide no source, no explanation of how they are ranking things, nothing to back up their claims. You can’t always believe everything you read, but at least if you make some effort to validate your claims, your words will be much more trustworthy.

    • http://www.pammarketingnut.com/ PamMktgNut

       @AdamBritten Bingo! You can NOT believe everything you read. Half the people blogging and tweeting about content, social business, marketing or brand have never spent a real day in a real biz doing any of it.  I’ve always been a believer in learning and pushing the envelop personally to do your best, learn more, deliver more. However, to claim you know something works when in reality you have never implemented it comes close to false claims. thanks for taking time to read and comment! Have a great weekend! 

    • jnettl230

       @AdamBritten I think so, too. That’s why I like to illustrate or give examples when I’m blogging. 

  • PamMktgNut

    @RussLujan thanks Russ!

  • PamMktgNut

    @Stefan_Laurell thank you Stefan! @AskAaronLee

  • PamMktgNut

    @joezuc thanks so much for the share! @NetResults

  • PamMktgNut

    @RebekahRadice thanks Ms Rebekah!! How are ya girl?

    • RebekahRadice

      @pammktgnut You’re welcome Pam! I’m doing fantastic! It’s the end of a productive day & I’m grabbing a glass of wine. :) How about you?

  • PamMktgNut

    @ckburgess thanks sistah!

  • PamMktgNut

    @BigGirlBranding thanks so much!!

    • BigGirlBranding

      @PamMktgNut :)

  • Netbuc

    @mmangen @PamMktgNut Dotcomsecrets X – Internet Marketing Coaching Program … http://t.co/oBAp7HcZ

  • MobileProsUSA

    @stevenstiefel sms marketing is a great tool for reaching customers http://t.co/B90neEg8

  • gerri50

    Nice list with 

  • gerri50

    Nice list with nice and simple explanations that should see marketing efforts get to where they REALLY should be!

    • http://www.pammarketingnut.com/ PamMktgNut

       @gerri50 Thanks so much! Hope they help! 

  • http://www.linkedin.com/in/annelizhannan annelizhannan

    Pam;
     
    You are consistently superb about offering quick and easy to read tips and checklists but I truly like all the back up resources in list form. It is such a great addition and so easy to navigate. Thanks for keeping us ‘with it’ in all this heat!

    • http://www.pammarketingnut.com/ PamMktgNut

       @annelizhannan Glad you like it! I have tried to provide more resources lately for folks to leverage and learn from. Glad to hear it’s useful. 

      • http://www.linkedin.com/in/annelizhannan annelizhannan

         @PamMktgNut Yes, very useful. I am still having difficulty trying to be everywhere at once, like you appear to be;). The resources are a great asset. 

  • VineetSaroey

    @LisaPetrilli Thanks Lisa

  • PamMktgNut

    @LisaPetrilli thanks Ms Lisa! Happy happy Friday to you! :-)

  • DanGreen_VPM

    28 Attributes of Good Content Marketing to Rock Your Social Business! http://t.co/v8V0Zhos via @PamMktgNut [RT @Steveology]

  • MobileProsUSA

    @bianca_bartz sms marketing is a great tool for reaching customers http://t.co/B90neEg8

  • kineshanko

    @bianca_bartz solid read, thnx. Whenever I think to post “10 steps to xyz” I always wonder if I should do “top 2 steps to xyz” – thoughts?

  • MotivatorsPP

    RT @Pagemodo: 28 Attributes of Good Content Marketing to Rock Your Social Business! http://t.co/sTD1AVYf

  • http://yogeshgautam.com/ YogeshGautam

    Superb article and very important list for every marketer.  Thanks

  • MobileProsUSA

    @LinkedInExpert have you heard of SMS Marketing? http://t.co/B90neEg8

  • MobileProsUSA

    @jijinmohan sms marketing is a great tool for reaching customers http://t.co/B90neEg8

  • MobileProsUSA

    @ScottAllen considering SMS messaging? http://t.co/B90neEg8

  • lexx2099

    @Pagemodo Hi guys, I’d like to use your stuff but keep getting billing errors -is payment system down atm? Thanks.

    • Pagemodo

      @lexx2099 Are you still seeing this issue?

      • lexx2099

        @Pagemodo Hi -yes, page keeps telling me that billing address does not match cardholder. It’s a company card -will this affect?

      • lexx2099

        @Pagemodo have tried several cards, no joy so far :/

      • lexx2099

        @Pagemodo Actually forget it, I used my personal card, obviously has a problem with shared cards for some reason. Ta :)

        • Pagemodo

          @lexx2099 Great! Sounds like you were able to figure it out. Don’t hesitate to contact our support team if you need any further assistance.

  • MobileProsUSA

    @ruhanirabin considering SMS messaging? http://t.co/B90neEg8

  • MSocialBusiness

    @gabymenta Thanks for the mention!

  • MSocialBusiness

    @bkardon @ValaAfshar Thanks for the mention!

    • ValaAfshar

      @MSocialBusiness you’re most welcome.

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  • DaveRGallant

    @brideaumc @PamMktgNut Glad you enjoyed it Michèle!

  • MarketingBuddy

    RT @BoKnowsMarkting @PamMktgNut 28 Attributes of Good Content Marketing to Rock Your Social Business http://t.co/PaAgePUs #contentstrategy

  • Alanal4ib4v1

    @BW_Management http://t.co/NUmQypGj

  • K_J_Designs

    My problem has always been, when? I’m already working 70+ hours a week. I never seem to have enough time. I try to stay consistent on Twitter and LinkedIn but then I neglect my blog. It seems to take me hours to write a blog post. I don’t think outsourcing my blog is a good idea. I’m just constantly feeling overwhelmed.
    Should I outsource my blog? I spend around $800 a month on Adwords and get a 10x return. I don’t mind taking some of that budget and moving it to inbound marketing but there seems to be quite a delay in getting a pay of from it.

    • http://www.vikingmarketingsolutions.ie/ UrbanRenstrom

      @K_J_Designs
      I agree long hours and multiple hats are the norm for small business owners.
      A 10x return on Adwords is fantastic, 8000 revenue per month; I applaud your efforts and it is proof of your success.
      Inbound Marketing is long term play and strategy. Everyone will agree.
      Adwords offers immediate traffic, everyone will agree.
      Advertising also has a half life of zero. Stop paying, no traffic, stop paying, no visibility.
      Blogging and blog post have a half life of 1-2 years (?). Stop writing today and yesterdays post will still generate traffic.
      Remember only 20% of clicks go to ads, 80% go to organic results.
      So if your marketing spend is only on ads you are potentially missing the majority of traffic for you niche. (Obviously, it’s not that simple, but look at visitor intent, the long tail keywords stuff and write for different stages of the funnel)
       
      Yes, I agree, what do you sacrifice in your 70hr work week to write a 500 word post? Let alone a post of this calibre: “28 attributes of good content marketing…”
      Think long term. Inbound Marketing Strategy is a long term. How to get results? Start now and in 3 months look at your traffic from those posts.
       
      To restart your blogging efforts, begin perhaps with short posts that answer specific question your customer need answers to. Check / mine your email outbox for topics.
       
      No harm in outsourcing blog writing, however, that’s another project to manage. Probably must offer keyword topics to writer and then edit the post prior to publishing. So it’s not a pay and forget tactic.
       
      Just my thoughts and thank again Pam for the great post.

  • MeganGrable

    @PamMktgNut Thanks for sharing this!! Great advice

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