Everyone is writing these days. Google keeps telling us “content is king” and everyone wants to be internet royalty. Everyone is churning out a steady stream of blog posts, status updates and newsletters. Thousands of blog posts on the same general topics are added to the internet daily as businesses try to work their way to the top of search rankings.
Unfortunately, churning out content is no longer enough. If you want readers to place value on your content, it must be well written and unique. I’ll be the first to admit grammar and spelling are not my strong suits. I rely on editors to make sure the final product is well put together. To win the hearts, minds and hopefully wallets of your potential clients, your content needs to be unique- something they can’t find anywhere else. You need to offer readers something only you can write.
Content Only You Can Write
The concept sounds good in theory, but it’s tough to put into practice. Let’s face it – there are only so many ways to explain to someone how a heat pump works or why someone needs to outsource their IT. How do you make your content stand out? In every business there are things you do which no other company does in exactly the same way. What is it that makes you, you?
Here’s a hint: it isn’t your price or offering “the best service.” I have never met a company who has told me they have crappy service. Make your messaging about who your company is at its core.
Sounding Like You
You need to define what makes your business different from your competitors by creating content which feels and sounds like you. When I first started blogging, everything sounded as if it had gone through a corporate homogenization tool. It was technically accurate, but incredibly bland. I don’t think anyone enjoyed reading it. I know I didn’t.
Eventually I became comfortable writing the way I spoke and a bit of personality crept into my blog posts. Reading a post now is a lot like a visit to the ‘Peg. Good information in little bites with the occasional bit of sarcasm thrown in. Often a blog post is a direct result of a conversation we have had with a client. If we answered the question for one person, surely there are others out there with the same question.
Share What You Know
Instead of going for big, bland blog topics, focus on specific elements or niche topics no one else in your industry knows about. Do you have a long time employee? Have them talk about how the industry has changed in the last few years or decades. People love “then and now” information and comparisons, particularly if you have photos to go with the story.
Is there someone with a specialized skill? Let them share their expertise. At Roundpeg I write about strategy and management issues and leave the social media commentary to Anne and Jarred. Don’t be content with the superficial tips everyone is sharing. Get specific and demonstrate real expertise with practical tips.
Hot topics pop up in all industries. All of your competitors and subject matter experts are talking about it. They are important and you should jump into the conversation when these topics appear.
If you throw your voice into the crowd, be sure to write with a unique perspective. Maybe you show how this process will work in a very specific niche or compare it to something else in a way no one else has. It’s ok to completely disagree with what others are saying if you can substantiate your point of view. (Side note: Headlines and titles which say everyone else is wrong get noticed.) Consider linking to other related posts to draw the authors into a conversation, as long as you have something unique to say.
The Bottom Line
Unique posts help you build rank for longtail keywords. You’re offering content which is relevant to your target audience and it’ll get you noticed. As you write about the things you know best, your confidence and expertise draws customers in. It encourages them to share, click and buy, which is exactly what you’re after.
How do you brainstorm and develop unique content for your audience? What do you do to set your business apart from the competition when writing?