Bill Gates made the phrase content is king famous over 20 years ago, and it still holds today. But it has led to an influx of massive volumes of content over the internet, offering little or no value.
If you want to be a great content creator, you can find many tips and tricks over Google. But it all boils down to thirteen habits that we want to teach you in this blog. Following them consistently will deliver value to your readers time and again.
Valuable content can not only improve your SEO rankings but also help you convert leads faster, build relationships with top influencers, and generate new organic customers online.
So we hope you are excited to discover the habits and create excellent content!
The 13 Habits of a Highly Successful Content Creator
Stay updated with your industry.
A lot is happening in the world every day. You got to know what is going on in your industry. The best content creators scour the internet for the latest industry news and trends. It helps them understand and convey the context behind the recent happenings to their readers.
One of the best ways to stay updated is to put everything you read in one place. You can start by setting up an RSS feed using apps similar to Feedly for popular blogs.
Also, you can discover where your buyer persona spends most of their time online and bookmark those blogs.
Create a Content Calendar
Sometimes, content creation can get out of sight and also out of your mind. Or it may just get too overwhelming due to multiple formats and the different buyer personas.
A content calendar, also known as an editorial calendar, can come to your rescue. It is a written schedule of when and where you plan to publish upcoming content. You can also plan upcoming pieces, status updates, promotional activity, and updates to existing content.
Benefits of a content calendar
- Inter-department and cross-department alignment: Inform everyone in the team about what has to be published, when, and where, so there is no duplication of efforts.
- Complete overview of content: Get clarity on how your content is distributed throughout the week, month, or year.
- Identify content milestones: Plan content during significant events and important dates.
- Spot content gaps: Understand what type of content you still need to plan besides the existing ones.
- Manage the content creation workflow: Ensure your content is ready in time for publishing when required.
Tips for content calendar success
- Open your calendars to everyone: Everyone in the team should have at least viewing access.
- Optimize constantly: A content calendar should change and grow along with your content needs.
- Adopt the best approach: Play around with the template of the content calendar depending on the needs.
- Create a content repository: Do not get stuck at any stage of content creation. The content repository can come in handy when you need to publish something urgently.
You can use a content calendar even if you are starting as a freelancer. It will make you more organized and efficient when working on any project.
Understand your audience
Content creators will not deny the fact that their audience pays all of their bills. Many digital content creators have a general idea of what the concept of audience is all about. They make broad assumptions and sound like other writers in their industry.
Successful content creators develop the habit of knowing their audience inside and out. They go the extra mile to create a buyer persona.
A buyer persona is a semi-fictional representation of your target audience. It includes details such as:
- Demographic details
- Personal Interests
- Behavioral Traits
- Professional Goals
- Pain Points
- Buying Habits
In a nutshell, a buyer persona allows you to create content that resonates with your real-life customers. If you are a brand and struggling with buyer personas, digital marketing companies can do the job for you. Never feel that you are alone in the content creation journey!
Establish your unique voice
We live in the information age, and almost everyone wants to share some information with the world. So you are not the sole content creator in your industry, offering advice, insights, and thought leadership.
You have to stand out from the other content creators in your field. Some of the best ways to do it are diversifying into a new content medium, marketing your content on different channels, and naturally building trust over time.
If you can bring something unique to your content that nobody else can, it is your voice.
Readers do not click on a particular content link only for the information but also to experience the personality. For example, if you want to write about health and fitness, do not load your article with only facts and figures. Offer analogies and personal success stories in your writing style.
Check out a snapshot below from one of the blogs related to sleep positions on WebMD.com. It does not state which sleeping position is best for you. The slideshow correlates your sleep with social behavior instead. So readers can relate to it in their lives and tweak their sleeping position accordingly.
Sometimes, the brand you are writing for might restrict you from creating opinionated or informal content. But that should not discourage you from conveying your unique perspective to the readers. Learn to balance the content guidelines with your creativity.
Never underestimate the power of keyword research.
Great content is a perfect combination of both art and science. You should know what type of content can resonate with a particular segment of readers. But at the same time, you cannot disappoint or misguide the search engines.
Leverage online tools or consult SEO service providers to maximize your reach through keywords. Including relevant keywords should be a significant component of your content strategy. Also, include keywords in the meta description and alt text to help search engines understand your content better.
Market your content
Marketing your content ensures that your hard work pays off in terms of viewers and visibility. Better online visibility builds your credibility as a digital content creator.
Sharing content across different platforms is one of the best ways to attract a wide range of viewership. Newsletters, paid social posts, email blasts, and website pop-ups are some of the ways you can distribute content to a large audience.
Also, you have to think more strategically when it comes to content marketing. Here are two approaches you can take to market your content better:
- Approach content creation like a business activity. Digital content can be tracked, improved, and tested. Understand different types of content metrics and KPIs.
- You can hire a content team or a consultant to take your content operations to the next level. As your content creation grows in terms of volume, it becomes impractical to manage everything single-handedly.
Before we move on to the next habit of understanding KPIs, look at the below quote. It should change your perspective towards content marketing.
Understand your KPIs when using Analytics tools
Publishing content online and marketing it does not guarantee quality traffic. You first need to focus on a key performance indicator (KPI) and then optimize your content for it. A KPI is a specific metric that measures how well your content is performing based on your expectations.
Modern KPIs include the following:
- Social media traffic: The number of visitors that came to your content from a social media platform.
- Direct traffic: The number of visitors who entered your website URL directly into the browser address bar.
- Organic traffic: The number of visitors you get from a search engine result link.
- Submissions: The number of people who visit your website and leave after providing their contact information in exchange for a valuable resource you offered them.
If you or your client want organic traffic, it is a good idea to understand the search algorithms of Google. Then, you can optimize your content so that it performs well for the organic traffic KPI.
Analytics tools can help you understand content performance. You will also get clarity on what changes or improvements you can make to your content.
If you are an amateur content creator, start with a small KPI like views or clicks. It will help you not feel overwhelmed by the advanced metrics.
If you are not hitting your goals, reevaluate your strategy and make the necessary changes. Do not continue with the hope that you will see results someday!
Use strategic tools for content creation.
Using the right tools can make a big difference between your success and failure as a content creator.
For example, visual tools such as Canva or Vidyard can help amateur content marketers create great images and videos.
SearchEngineJournal.com has listed the top 20 content marketing tools. The tools are sub-divided into five categories as follows:
- Content research
We will discuss one tool from each category:
Leadfwd is a website that helps you turn an unknown visitor into a potential lead. If anonymous visitors come to your site, you can capture their information, follow up, and turn them into paying customers.
It is a valuable tool, especially for marketers. Lead generation is one of the most significant tasks for any digital marketing company.
In addition to lead generation, LeadFWD also helps you with content creation. It shows you how visitors spend their time on your website in the form of a graph. You can then use these insights to tweak your content accordingly.
The tool uses artificial intelligence (AI) to scan your website in real-time. It then delivers insights that help with lead generation and content creation.
Slack is one of the most popular collaboration tools used by businesses, marketers, and teams.
Its user-friendly interface allows users to share images, documents, memes, videos, etc.
Slack can replace your traditional email communication. If you run a content team, it helps to monitor the activity of your team members.
Slack also helps you collaborate with different departments and ensure that all content passes through the right hands.
For example, the SEO team can provide the target keywords for the blog, the writer can create the first draft, and the editor can finalize the content. Everything happens within Slack, and it expedites the content creation process.
Surfer SEO analyzes the top-ranking search results for your chosen target keyword. It then provides a list of suggestions to help you create content that will be competitive in search engines.
The suggestions may include the following:
- Aiming for a target word count.
- Including your target keyword in your page title.
- Increasing keyword usage on the page.
Surfer SEO also provides a feature of docs to help you write, analyze, and optimize your content in one place.
The Hemingway App is a free online writing assistant. It scans your content for readability, use of passive voice, and any spelling and grammar issues.
Readability matters because each audience has a certain level of understanding when it comes to reading online articles. Tools similar to the Hemingway App help you create content in a way that makes sense to your target audience.
The rule of thumb is to aim for a readability score of 5 to 8 for most audiences.
Sometimes, content creators wonder what the readers have read or skipped on their content.
Inspectlet stops the guesswork and records a video of user behavior, showing how they engaged with your content and which elements caught their attention. It is one of the main advantages of Inspectlet over the other analytic tools available in the market.
The tool also tells you where your website is lagging if someone leaves it after facing an issue.
All of these insights help you create content that is more appealing to your readers.
Never stop networking with great content creators.
Successful content creators never forget the people who taught them, inspired them, and pushed them out of their comfort zones. They also acknowledge that learning never stops and that they must be open to new ways of thinking.
Networking with like-minded people lets you listen to their ideas and expand your knowledge base. You can network on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn and also follow the thought leaders in your industry.
Once you start networking on social media, you can get into in-person networking. If you are not a natural extrovert, start small with colleagues and friends who are content creators themselves. Eventually, networking will become second nature to you.
Offer solutions, not plain commentary.
Good content creators have the knowledge needed to create a particular type of content. But for great content creators, expertise is not everything. They make the content memorable for their readers.
Do not recite the things in the content like a newsreader. Explain why and how your content is valuable and what the readers can take away from it.
If you can offer specific solutions to your readers’ problems, they will always come back to you. Also, tell them to ask questions or post suggestions in the comment box. It will help you grow further as a content creator.
Repurpose and recycle
You do not have to create new content every day to be a successful content creator.
Repurposing and recycling content is an effective way to get the most out of your past work. You can always use your existing pool of quality content in other formats to improve your visibility in the digital space.
Here are some proven ways of repurposing and recycling content:
- If a blog post has a good ranking, use it in a relevant podcast episode or social video.
- Find your best-performing content and update it for the current year. Add a few more examples or increase its length to add more value.
- You can break down blog posts into a series of posts.
- You can convert Tweets into roundup posts.
- Cut full-length videos into short clips, and promote them individually.
Thus, you can cheat at content creation when required. But whatever you do, the recycled content should be better than before or at least maintain its existing rankings.
Make your content more interactive.
Audiences want to engage with the content they receive and not just scan it from top to bottom. Engagement can be higher only when the content is interactive and not just massive volumes of information.
Some examples of interactive content are quizzes, polls, infographics, calculators, etc.
Ask the right questions.
Polished content creators are curious about everything around them. The insights generated from such inherent curiosity make great content.
If you are not curious by nature, start questioning whatever you read on the internet. Understanding why the author thinks in a specific way and what triggered a particular viewpoint will develop your thought process. Such critical thinking will make you a great content creator over time!
Summing it up
The ball is in your court. Inculcate the habits mentioned in this blog, and you can deliver valuable content to your readers. Remember, you will not get good at content creation overnight. Consistency is the key to long-term success in any area of life.
Let us know if our blog inspired you to be a great content creator. Leave a comment below and also share the blog with your peers.