SEO Copywriting tips for SMEs

Why printed content is just as important as your online content

A direct mail letter can work wonders for your brand and your profitability.

Why not consider a mailpiece as part of your content marketing campaign?

Wait a minute, isn’t print dead?

Print is transforming itself and should be considered an equally important element of your content marketing generation and carries a lot of gravitas.

How many of you use pen and paper to jot down ideas, thoughts and your to do list?

Customers are bombarded by a variety of messages daily via multi-channel communications; a means by which companies or brands communicate the same or similar message but on different channels and platforms.

This can be an all time-consuming job with the majority of us skim reading the email or webpage. Print can be used as the first touchpoint for the recipient to touch, feel, read and even smell before going online.

Writers of content need to be aware that it is the content that matters, not necessarily the medium it is consumed on.

How long the audience spends reading your content is more relevant than where they read it – in print, on the web or mobile.

Writing content requires you to think about who it is for and where they are?

content writing for print

Are they solely mobile users and here I mean users of smartphones and tablets, do they sit in front of a PC, or do they prefer the written word?

A mobile device offers an immediate experience because it is quick but the reader is more likely to skim and scan, jump from page to page, enter content at different points, have a limited attention span and read about 30% slower.

Contrast that to print which is a slow more time-consuming experience where the reader is likely to read every word, read pages consecutively, read from top to bottom and left to right, find reading easier, can read at a faster rate and concentrate on the copy without any distractions.

If the content is punchy and gets to the point quickly then your recipient will more often than not read to the end of the page.

Contrast that to online content and an ill-prepared and poorly written content article will mean that person leaves your site altogether.

Our tolerance and patience threshold is a lot shorter when reading online, there are distractions and notifications whereas print makes you focus on the page because it forces us to slow down and take it in.

Print means you ‘make time’; tablets and smartphones are about ‘fill time’; marketing and advertising can be missed because the mobile experience is faster.

The value of the content really drives how and where it is consumed.

Writing content for online engagement requires a different thought process because the result is about keeping your audience engaged and then asking them to take action.

With print, we find it easier to read more and for longer periods. I read more physical books than read from a tablet, it is a personal thing but I much prefer the experience of settling down and reading from a page than a screen.

I know that when I read online content I skim read and if the content is long winded or it doesn’t hold my attention, I move on.

One of the most commonly made mistakes is to write too much online content to fill a web page because there is the space to do so.

Producing content for online consumption gives a brand or company the opportunity to personalise the experience, to add touch points thus encouraging engagement. A bit like following a path to a doorway, these touch points work the same way.

An example of this might be for your free, no obligation… click here which might take you to a signup page and onward to another landing page that offers a free download to say thank you for signing up.

You can’t do it this in the same way with print but you can add QR codes and AR technology to take the customer from print into the digital world, it provides a unique and different experience for the consumer.

When you are coming up with sales and marketing content ideas, don’t think that you have to make a choice between producing something in print or for online; using both mediums either in tandem or individually can be equally effective.

Understanding what it is you want to achieve with your sales campaign will help you focus on delivering content that is useful to your audience and hopefully capture their interest.

Part of the process could be creating a printed marketing piece that contains an offer designed for a niche audience that drives traffic to your website. This is a very effective way of driving engagement in the long term.

Whether your words are in print or online, the key is to keep the attention of your audience and get them to take action.

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