5 Tips For Consistent Copy In Your Content Marketing
Content marketing in itself is overwhelming, add copywriting on top of that and yikes…you’ve got a lot to worry about. If you’ve ever found a brand you’re interested in and begun investigating their website or social media accounts, you’ve seen how important it is to maintain consistency in copy, even if you didn’t realize it at the time.
Picture it: if a company maintains a funny, lighthearted Twitter account but the content on their website is serious and technical, the effect can be jarring. In some cases, even the content on a single website can alternate back and forth in tone. Inconsistent copy makes it difficult for readers and potential customers to get a feel for your brand, and the disconnect can almost feel dishonest. However, it can also be extremely difficult to maintain that consistent copy, particularly if your organization is large and you have multiple writers! If you’re trying to improve your brand’s copy consistency, ask yourself if you’ve considered the following points:
1. Have a definitive tone that your entire staff knows well.
Make your organization’s tone a priority. Your writers should know the tone backward and forwards, but so should your entire staff! Whether you’re interested in creating a businesslike atmosphere online or a more playful one, make sure it’s clear to everyone. The better your staff knows your tone, the less likely you are to experience any tonal missteps in your content marketing. With this method, not only will you experience greater team unity, but you can feel confident about the content any member of your team creates—not only your team’s official content creators!
2. Your message should be something your customer expects.
This isn’t to say that you can never do anything different or experimental (although if the topic is something completely out of left field, it’s a good idea to lead into it first). Instead, consider it a guideline about your tone. You should have a solid understanding of what tone your customer expects from you, and when you’ve finished an article or piece of content, ask yourself whether this newest piece fits that expectation. Remember, a tone change is confusing for readers, and confused people are rarely in the mindset to make purchases.
3. Keep clear, consistent headlines in your content marketing.
Headlines are always the first thing a reader sees, so they’re naturally an important part of the consistent copy. One of the easiest ways to keep your headlines similar is by keeping them all at approximately the same length. Short headlines tend to be much better at catching people’s attention. Readers tend to focus on the first and last three words of a title and may completely skip over the rest, so writing consistently short headlines with clear, strong words is the best way to not only keep your titles consistent but to increase reader engagement overall. It’s often tempting to try to write clickbait-centered headlines, but clarity is often more important to readers than catchiness!
4. Content should teach a reader more about you.
Even content marketing that isn’t explicitly a website FAQ or an “about us” article should be indirectly passing that style of information on to your readers. When a piece of content has been finished, read it over and ask yourself whether it effectively teaches your audience about your values, your organization itself, or what you can offer them. It’s easier than you think to include hints at this information in all your content. Readers can tell a lot about your organization from the tone you write in and what you write about, so when your message is well-written and on-brand, every piece of content is a learning opportunity.
5. Don’t forget to read.
One of the best ways to improve your content, in general, is to study other content that you admire. Find that company or organization that writes great content, and figure out what makes it so engaging. If they really do have great content to offer and not just an interesting one-off article, it’s likely that their content will be consistent. Look for the word choices they make, the tone they use, and the information they offer. What stays the same across all their content? How can you use similar words or structures to maintain consistency in your organization’s content?
Keeping your copy consistent can make a huge difference when it comes to audience engagement, no matter what kind of business you work for. Consistent copy lets readers become familiar with your organization, get to know your voice, and regularly learn more about you all at the same time. Consistency can seem difficult, but by keeping a few key ideas in mind consistency can become a habit rather than stress.