The WordPress/Ready Meal Paradigm

September 4, 2014 . by Julia Traskas #Content#Copy#Design#Web Design

Julia Traskas, takes a look at the sometimes turbulent marriage between design and content.

Stab, Stab, Ping!

Come on, admit it. From time to time, we’ve all given found ourselves in the chilled section of M&S salivating over the delicious-looking pictures on their ready meal boxes. The promise of an amazing, gourmet meal with little or no effort is so seductive that, before we know it, it’s in our shopping bag and we’re heading home, mouth watering and tummy rumbling.

“All very interesting” I hear you cry, “but I came here to read about WordPress websites so what’s your point?”

Bear with me, I’m getting there. My point is that when you do the stab, stab, ping thing and pull back the film, you’re invariably disappointed to find that the contents just don’t match the promise of the packet.

So, while that amazing marketing had you hoping for:

Original

Substantial

Memorable

Colourful

What you actually got on your plate was:

Predictable

Bland

Forgettable

Grey 

Disappointing, isn’t it?

A Triumph of Style over Content?

It’s the same in the online world, good looks and great functionality draws people into your site but it won’t mean a thing if your content sends them straight back to Google.

Here’s a typical scenario for a business, which wants to strengthen its online presence:

  • Your current site isn’t generating the leads you want so it’s time to update it.
  • You identify WordPress as a modern and user-friendly platform you’d like to use.
  • You set a budget for your new site
  • You make contact with a developer and explain your brand and the functionality you need.
  • Your developer builds a custom site, which does everything you want and is easy to keep updated and fresh.
  • You invest in good quality images to really attract your customers’ attention.

Amazing so far. Your WordPress site looks awesome, and you’re excited to launch. There’s just the small matter of the content.

DIY Content

You might be a great writer and nobody knows your business as well as you do but do you have the time to dedicate to creating content that delivers everything your shiny new site promises?

Now, I’m a freelance content writer, so I would say this but, content really is king and its creation requires a significant investment of time and money so here are my top 5 tips for creating 5* content:

  1. Decide on the tone you want to use and stick to it throughout your site.
  2. Be original – you believe that you have something unique to offer to the market so don’t provide content that’s the same old same old.
  3. Know your customers – and provide content that tells them what they want to know.
  4. Schedule time to write – don’t try to do a bit of your content each day, you’ll lose your thread and it will seem disconnected.
  5. Write your first draft freely, edit it ruthlessly and get a second (and even third) opinion.

Professional Content

If writing just isn’t your thing, you could use a professional, there are plenty of freelance content writers out there on sites like People per Hour who will do the job without charging you an arm and a leg.

If you go down this route, you’ll need to prepare a detailed brief including examples of content you love and hate, a list of competitors and any sites you’d like your writer to visit when they do their research.

Over the life of your business, you’re going to need to create a whole lot of content so, there are advantages to building a relationship with a writer whose style you like, the more they work with you, the more they’ll get to know your business and the more valuable they’ll become to you.

Food for Thought

If this blog’s got you wondering about your own marketing content, I’d be happy to take a look at it for you and provide you with a report on the language, tone and flow. Please feel free to contact me through www.quirkify.com.

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