Although this is the content writing section, content writing is not a discrete step; writing happens from start to finish in the content development process. In this section you will begin putting your content together and getting it ready to be published and marketed.
5 steps of content writing
1. Research, Part 1– There are two parts to research; the first part of research is research for inspiration. You first want to research your topic on a general scope – see what others are saying about the topic, find out what is trending, and get a more general understanding of your topic.
2. Outline – Going back to the idea that content development is like building a house, you now need to create the frame for your house. The outline creates the whole structure and organization of your content. Organization is a crucial component in writing great content.
3. Research, Part 2 – The second part of the research process is to get more focused information. This includes specific facts, photos and videos, quotes, statistics, and anything else you can find that will a) help you understand the topic, b) support your topic, and c) allow you to explain it to your audience accurately and succinctly.
This information fills in the blanks of your outline and essentially serves as the insolation to your frame. Research is a huge factor, especially in B2B content marketing and having all of the facts laid out will help you incorporate them in a fluid and organized manner.
4. Polish – This step is the paint and new furniture in your newly built home. It’s what turns your house into a home and your draft into great content. The 6 traits of writing is a great grading tool that can be used to ensure quality and completion in your content. The 6 traits are as follows:
– Content is the heart of your story.
– Organizationsmoothly guides your audience through your story.
– Voice is the overall tone of your story and should be relevant and consistent.
– Word choice helps create imagery in your audience’s minds.
– Sentence fluency creates flow within your story to make it enjoyable and easy to read.
– Conventions are all the rules of language – grammar, punctuation, spelling.
These 6 traits take your content from good to great, but the most important of these and the key to good writing is absolutely organization.
5. The waiting game – Once you have written your content leave it for 2 to 24 hours. This goes back to the idea of coming back with a fresh pair of eyes. Re-read your material, make necessary edits, and then read it again. You’re much more likely to catch errors or weak points.
If you can, send it to someone else to read through it. They will catch anything you missed and be able to offer tips to make it even better. Once again, a fresh pair of eyes is a great tool!
By following these tips for content writing, you will have a high-quality piece of content that is ready to be published and shared. For more information check out next week’s blog, the last in this series, Part III: Content Marketing.
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