6 kinds of content that are bound to fail


Compelling content can make your brand sizzle.

Bad content, however, can sink your business with astonishing speed. If
you’d prefer to steer clear of creating useless—or possibly even
damaging—content, here’s what’s bound to fail:

Boring content

Not every blog post is going to become a viral sensation or fodder for the
next great American novel, but it should be interesting in some way.

Even if your subject matter is less than thrilling, find a way to make your
content enjoyable. Try adding humor, visuals or an element of interaction,
such as a quiz.

Brand-centric content

Sorry, it’s all not about you. It’s about your readers.

Make sure your content focuses on your audience. What’s in it for them?
What benefits, value or tangible takeaways will they draw from your
content? If you’re writing simply to pump your brand, prepare to be
ignored.

[RELATED: [RELATED: Craft messages that resonate with internal and external audiences and moves them to act.]

Content that’s written to nobody in particular

When you write content, you should always have an audience in mind—a
specific demographic you’re trying to target, based on internal data or
buyer personas.

Content should be crafted with your audience’s unique needs, problems and
values in mind. Generic content that’s written for everyone tends to reach
no one. Tailor your content to suit your specific audience.

Content that’s written for robots

Are SEO tricks and gimmicks making your content unreadable? Don’t try to
game Google. Also, don’t insult your readers by dropping in keywords all
over the place. Google—and your readers—will not reward your tricks.

Salesy content

Your content can be a bridge to sales, but no one likes a pushy
salesperson.

It’s easy to spoil an otherwise spectacular piece of content with an
egregious sales pitch. Readers will flee if you push too hard.

Content that’s hard to read

Who likes long sentences and endless paragraphs? Break your content up with
headings, bullet points and numbered lists. Make it easy to skim and
digest.

Any bit of strain on the reader will doom your content to failure, so make
it short, sweet and punchy.

A version of this post first appeared on

Grammar Chic
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