Creating Branded Content
What you need to consider when creating branded content for your business.
When I'm creating branded content it is now purely focused on blog writing. However, unlike some of my fellow entrepreneurs, I don’t write in big batches weeks in advance; I’m not the kind of writer who can reel of content at a drop of a hat.
So after a week of half working, half not during the Easter holidays, I sat down with a brew to write what I thought would be an awesome insightful blog. But half way though I stopped, because I couldn't work out what I consider a very fundamental part of my writing:
What was the point?
Creating Branded Content
When I write articles my aim for you is to always get something out of it. Now, this doesn't always have to be business related; content can voice your opinion, educate or just entertain - and all of these things can add more brand awareness
I have seen a lot of business content recently where - in an attempt to remind the audience of expert knowledge - some sort of “lesson” has been stuffed in at the end. This type of content reminds me of religious assemblies at school; where the Priest would try and make a pen, somehow, be related to God (it went as well as you’re imagining it did).
And on Sunday, as I sipped my brew with the dog snoring softly next to me, I realised that you wouldn’t be getting anything out of it. Which, ironically, prompted me to write this.
We have been telling tales for centuries, and because of this we are more likely to listen to stories than percentages and ratios to get our information.
And most, if not all stories have some sort of point to them: The Boy who Cried Wolf reminded people that if you continue making things up people will stop believing you (and then you get eaten by a wolf). The Tortoise and the Hare told us that being fast doesn’t necessarily mean you are going to win in the end (potentially something that business owners need to remember) and Harry Potter gave us that hope that we might be a wizard and get our very own pet owl.
This is why so many branding/marketing/sales/copywriters talk about storytelling for your business. It’s the easiest way of communicating.
So how do you write branded content that shows your expertise, doesn’t feel fake and your audience will listen to?
I will preface this and mention that this is not the only way to write branded content, but it’s the way that works for me and hey, if it works for you, awesome! I have also had 4 years of learning to write content: if you find any of my previous articles you will see that they weren’t like this, but instead very formal and a little dull (if I do say myself!) So practicing always helps! If you’re concerned check out Seth Godin’s blog - he writes every day and regardless of what it is he posts it.
Firstly, I have certain topics of content (AKA content pillars) that I stick to: Branding (obvs), Female Entrepreneurship, and Female Equity & Equality. I could talk about other things: my love of dogs, my many hobbies, my soft spot for fashion. But keeping it consistent with a few topics means that my audience (you) can get to know me for these subjects (and of course if you’re really curious about the rest you can message me and chat about it).
As I said at the beginning I don’t write in advance. Mainly because if there is some breaking branding news that I want to cover batch writing content won’t allow me to do so. Also things around me (online and off) influence my writing but I ensure that it aligns with the above content pillars.
And sometimes blogs just don’t make the cut. There can be a number of reasons for this: I’m unsure whether I’m making a point or just moaning, it’s not the right time or just feels a bit “meh”. These always stay in my drafts (have around 20 draft posts!)
For me, I have to have some sort of connection for it to really work. A couple of months ago I wrote about Barbie’s latest doll in a blog post because she had scoliosis which is something I have had.
Making it Count
And whilst I try to be regular about posting there have been occasions where I’ve missed my usual slots. The reason? Ultimately because there isn’t anything that meets my criteria to write.
This is one of the reasons why I took the business off social media: I don’t have things to say or to show people on a daily basis - but the way that social platforms are built I had to create some sort of content.
My final advice to give when creating content is don’t worry about the negatives. You will always get someone who doesn’t agree with your opinion, or will unsubscribe from your content. It’s not a personal attack on you (even if they do get personal - that’s trolls for you), it’s just you’re not the right fit. Don’t let that stop you from having a voice and an opinion.