There are so many different ways to communicate online with our ideal customers that it’s hard to know where to start. We’ve all seen the statistics about video, and it would seem that written content will soon fall by the wayside. Live video is now everywhere, and even LinkedIn has added video to its platform – judging by the number of talking heads I see when I scroll through my feed, a lot of people are taking advantage of its availability.
We know that people consume their content on the go, on the (relatively) small screens of their mobiles or tablets, and they prefer it in bite-size chunks. And yet, I don’t think writing is going out of fashion at all, because good quality, well-written content is more in demand than ever.
In online groups, writers are asking for advice all the time – how much should they charge, should they sign up to freelance sites (incidentally the answer is no – read why here) and how can they improve their craft. Furthermore, some writers are commanding high fees for specialist, often technical, content, as companies need clear, easy to understand written descriptions and explanations of products and services.
Where do We See Written Content?
Not convinced? If you find yourself idly tapping the latest clickbait headline from Buzzfeed, you’re going to get an article, or at the minimum a listicle. Social Media Examiner has countless blogs from guest contributors on all manner of topics related to content, digital marketing and social networks.
Podcasts are popping up everywhere as business owners seek to expand their audience, demonstrate their knowledge and promote themselves as thought leaders. They talk widely about their subject and interview other experts to give even more value to the listeners. But they don’t publish them in isolation – they’re accompanied and enhanced by full transcripts, show notes of the key points, or blogs summarising the highlights, all of which is written content (more on all of these in future posts).
Sometimes, lead magnets are included as part of the show notes, or they’re offered elsewhere on a website. While they include images, they’re almost always written content in one form or another, whether it’s a short and snappy checklist, a chapter from a book or a white paper. And a lead magnet is designed to entice the site visitor to share their email address or make a purchase, so they need to be well-crafted.
My inbox is full of email newsletters sent out by everyone from the company I buy my business cards from to a conference venue I visited once, and sometimes from people I don’t even remember meeting. Some I read, most I don’t, although many people love receiving them. Business owners (or their assistants) are investing time to create a written snapshot of what’s going on in their business or industry, and these are invaluable for list building.
Finally – although I could probably find more examples – there are books, both electronic and physical. Sometimes these are created as a way to get other business opportunities, sometimes they’re designed to improve your life or teach you something new, and sometimes they’re sharing a radical new idea, but the demand for them isn’t going away.
Far from being regarded as an old-fashioned way of marketing, the written word is being used in more ways than we could imagine, as business owners complement other types of content with text. Perhaps writing is outsourced more often, but it’s being created, consumed and appreciated nonetheless. Which is good for me, because it means more writing AND more reading!