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Win with these Best Practices for Online Content

It’s easy to post content online, but not everything you publish will get attention. To get attention online takes planning. These best practices for online content will help your content rise above the clutter.

Create an Awesome Title/Headline

The headline (or subject line in the case of email) is the first thing users read. If there isn’t a title, like there is for web pages and blog posts, the first sentence is the attention grabber.

Great headlines:

  • Promise a specific benefit
  • Use numbers
  • Ask a question
  • Create urgency
  • Trigger curiosity or emotion
  • Use a keyword that defines the content

Use Special Characters and Emoji

Special characters add visual prominence. Research shows that special characters and emoji that are relevant to the content enhance the communication of meaning and interest in the content.

Don’t overdo it. Too many emoji have the opposite effect and make your content look low-quality or spammy.

Hashtag on Platforms that Use Them

Some online platforms use hashtags to organize content. Examples include Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn. Use them when relevant.

It’s important to use hashtags that are relevant to that platform. Don’t rely on a general set of tags. The meaning and following of a hashtag can be vastly different from one platform to another.
Always research hashtags! Make sure your content is relevant to what’s being shared with the tag. Also look to make sure the tag following makes it a worthwhile use of space in your post.

Include Visuals

Images are critical. Research consistently shows that more visual social posts get more shares, engagement and clicks than other online content.

When picking images, keep in mind:

  • Images with faces are powerful attention grabbers
  • Pets also draw attention
  • Original images stand out more than stock photos
  • Limit video length to be within best practices of the platform where it is being shared

Mention Others

Mentioning others in your content is powerful, especially when those mentions link to their content. People are influenced by social proof of others liking something. Search engines take these mentions as a signal of authority in a subject area.

When you mention and link to others, they are likely to respond with a comment or share. This expands the reach from your audience to theirs as well.

Get More Engagement with Online Content Best Practices

Most online posts get almost no traction, while a small percentage of posts get huge engagement. Putting more effort into following online content best practices as you create your content improves your likelihood of getting results. Fewer posts that are well created will outperform a volume of poor quality posts.

How to Write Great Online Content

What makes great online content? It’s not easy, but paying attention to quality factors can make a significant difference in reach and impact.

Great content helps you get more visitors, gets them looking at what you have to offer, and ideally makes them customers. The key is to provide your visitors with what they need, not necessarily what you want to tell them.

Write for Your Readers

As you develop content, understand and address what your users actually want to read about. What interests do they have? What events or news do they follow that you can relate to your business? What problems are they trying to fix that have led them to your site?

Understand what your target customer is looking for and address those questions and needs directly.

Make Content Easy to Read

No matter who you are talking to, we all want things to be easy to scan and read online. Think about the structure of your text and the words you use. Use paragraphs and several headings. Limit the use of long words and complex sentences.

Easy does not need to be boring! Have fun and make your content engaging.

Be Trustworthy

Write in a clear and user-oriented way to be transparent. State the facts, address issues. Use real photos whenever possible. Include testimonials as they were written. If you are real, people will connect.

Keep it Fresh

Great content is also updated. Have you given your website a read in light of the pandemic? Is your content sensitive to the current climate and the stresses your reader may be feeling? Keep your content updated so it always feels maximally relevant to the reader.