How to Create Engaging Content: 6 Tips to Captivate your Readers
“Engaging content is key to content marketing success.”
As a content creator or blogger, you must have heard this several times. Let’s take a moment to understand what engaging content is.
A simple search on Google throws back hundreds and thousands of search results, few relevant to you. You probably click on some of them and start skimming through but do you actually read all of them? Probably not.
You read only those that get your attention and engage you through compelling storytelling, useful information, easy-to-comprehend language, and relevant visuals.
Now, that’s a lot of pressure on a content writer.
6 Pro Tips to Create Engaging Content and Hook your Readers
It’s tough to churn out engaging content but that is what is going to set you apart from fellow writers. So, if you want to attract and retain readers, you have to go the extra mile and make your blogs and other content pieces engaging.
I’ve put together six tried and tested tips to help you create engaging content that will captivate your audience.
1. Grab attention with a compelling headline
Headlines are the first thing a reader reads. Whether he will read and spend time on your content or not largely depends on your headline.
Did you know that 80% of readers never make it past the headline?
The headline you craft sets the expectations of the reader and gives a gist on what to expect from the blog.
So, how do you create a compelling one? By offering something unique to the readers, evoke emotions or creating a sense of urgency. You can include an action word, an interesting number, powerful adjectives or even a negative word to evoke their interest.
You can also use a tool such as CoSchedule’s Headline Analyzer to generate interesting headlines.
2. Share Anecdotes
Using anecdotes in writing is a great way to create engaging content. Anecdotes are short stories or personal experiences to help you establish your point and connect with your audience.
You can use anecdotes, in the beginning, to hook readers or set the context for the topic or in the middle, to establish a point with an example.
Anecdotes are immensely helpful in persuasive writing. You connect with your audience instantly when you share a story. While using anecdotes, make sure they’re relevant to your writing and add value to your content piece.
3. Focus on readability
Readability refers to the ability of the reader to read and understand your content. It plays an important role in creating engaging content.
How you ask? Everyone’s intellect is not the same so you need to write such that is easy to read and understand for everyone.
You can use tools such as Grammarly to check the readability of your content. The key is to write short sentences, break down your thoughts into short paragraphs, and write in an active voice as much as possible.
You should also use subheadings, bullet points, and lists to create make your content easy to scan, read and understand.
4. Write for human and search engines
In the race to be ranked well on search engines, what most content writers fail to understand is that one needs to write for humans first.
You have to cater to your readers’ needs and sensibilities. Stuffing articles with keywords will just make it sound robotic and there’s no way it can hold a reader’s attention.
So, think about what your readers want first – write to answer their queries and solve their problems while creating a value-driven post.
Once you’re done brainstorming ideas, make sure you write in a conversational manner – just the way you speak.
At the same time, there’s no denying that your blog needs to be optimized for SEO for your readers to find it. Follow these five key points create SEO-centric content:
- Include a mix of short and long-tail keywords across the content. Use tools such as Ahrefs to do keyword research
- Write a compelling headline and meta-description, with the target keywords
- Insert external and internal links in your content
- Optimize the page URL and images to include the target keyword
- Ensure your blog is mobile-friendly and loads fast
5. Support with data and facts
A huge part of writing valuable and insightful posts is ensuring you support your claims and points with enough data, facts, and research from trustworthy sources. Doing this adds credibility to your content.
6. Use Enticing Visuals
According to Hubspot, adding visual content in your blog can help you generate up to 94% more views.
Visuals not only engage the audience but is also a welcome change to break the monotony of text. You can use visuals in the form of static images, GIFs, videos, and infographics.
So, if there’s something you can say better or emphasized upon with visuals, it’s a good idea to include them strategically in your content.
Creating engaging content is an art and it definitely needs a lot of practice. Along with polishing your writing skills, you need to keep your readers at the heart of everything you create.