A Beginner’s Guide to Creating Online Content

For a small business owner, the idea of creating any kind of content is just daunting. How can you possibly create anything new with the whole running a business thing? Easy, don’t over think it.

Content can be as quick as creating a selection of 30-60 second videos that you could create with an iPhone. Yes, quality is important, but if you’re just starting out, use the resources you have and give it a shot. The secret: create these quick videos all in one day. If you make 8-12, 30 second videos in one day, you have 2-3 months of video content in your pocket, if you choose to release one a week (which is plenty by the way).

Now that you know it doesn’t have to take up hours and hours of time, consider some of the highest performing content options and select a couple that might work best for you and your business:

  1. Blogging is good for your business, here's why.Blogging
    If you like to write (or know someone who can help), get to your computer and write. Talk about your industry, offer tips, uncover myths and truths, whatever the information you can get out in the public, get it there. Just make sure your content is well written and free from typos.
  2. Video
    This is likely one of the top resources for social media and the best content out there to catch a potential customers’ attention. Whether its 30 seconds or 3 minutes, make sure the information is engaging, quality is decent, if not top notch, and give viewers something to do when the video ends. That can include subscribing to your channel or newsletter, clicking to make a purchase or to get more information, or another call to action that works for you. There are tons of guidelines for video content, but when you’re just starting out as a small business, test out some options and see what gets you the best response. Just make sure you don’t sway too far from your branding plan.
  3. Infographics
    If you’ve never seen one, these are images that reflect statistical data about a specific topic. Depending on your industry, these can be super useful and easily sharable. Plus the information is quick and easy to read, so folks are more likely to stop and take a look. Don’t get scared away by the design of something like this. You can find templates on a stock photo site like Adobe Stock and fill in the blanks with your information. Just make sure this is a good fit for your type of business; it might not be for everyone.
  4. Case Studies
    If you have a service based business, you’ll find more success in this type of content. These days, customers are looking to trust you more than anything else. Once you build that trust, they are more willing to be loyal to you and offer some repeat business. Case studies can help offer that trust, offering an actual experience they can read about and resonate. Finding ways to connect directly with your customer base will give you a step up above your competition.
  5. eBooks
    One of the most effective methods of collecting what I like to call “digital gold” (aka email addresses), is to offer your customer an incentive in exchange for an email address. eBooks are that very incentive. Whether you create a 10 page booklet of key information or prepare a 300 pager, give them something for free in exchange for an email address. From there, you’ll have their attention and you can keep it with a proper email marketing strategy. But first, that eBook will give you the leverage you need to start creating a place in your industry as an expert.
  6. Free Downloadables
    Similarly to eBooks, offering interested customers some free information that will actually help them on a regular basis is always a great way to create content. If you have a service based business, create a checklist that gives readers a ready-to-go to do list to maintain equipment or a step-by-step guide for something simple that they can do at home. When the time is right, they’ll call you for work. This goes hand in hand with building that trust.
  7. Interviews/Guest Bloggers
    Customers don’t have to take your word for it. Interview someone in your industry that backs up your information. Give them as many reasons as possible to know that you are knowledgeable and trustworthy.
  8. Social Media posts and graphics
    Whatever you do, don’t hire a “young person” to do your social media for you. Unless they know your branding plan and can follow through with consistent posts that are relevant and engaging, your best bet is to plan this one out. Take out that calendar with all of your video releases and write out every single post you’ll release on your social media accounts this month. As a small business, you don’t need to post every single day. In fact, if you do, you might become annoying to some people. Space out your posts a couple times during the week and sprinkle in something more immediate here and there as things come up. Use memes and funny graphics to get your message across and make sure you engage your audience in a way that they react to the post in the form of a like, comment or share.

Yes, there will always be time involved when creating content, there is no way around that. Consider how it can take you a step above your competition, especially the bigger box stores and companies with whom you can’t always compete.

Each of these content options outlined above have much more detail involved to make them successful, but get your hands dirty. Try one or two and see how you can fit it into your schedule, and if you need help, contact us and we’ll help you build your content strategy and plan.

Sure, you can hire someone to create the content for you, but who is the expert here, you or them?

Source: Blog graphic courtesy of Lyfe Marketing

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *