Posted by amandamilligan
I’m a big fan of the Lore podcast, and in a recent episode, the host discussed a volume called the Malleus Maleficarum.
Two words starting with the “mal” prefix doesn’t sound super friendly, right?
Well, the book is essentially a guide on how to identify witches and conduct witch trials. It turned out to have quite the horrible impact on society — as we’ve learned in history categories — but the host notes that it’s also one of the first how-tos ever written.
And it was published in 1486, ore than 500 years ago.
How-to content isn’t brand-new, and from what I can tell, it isn’t going anywhere. Look at how many search results come back when you narrow content down to names including “how to.”
It’s not just that there’s a ton of this type of content, either. People want to read it.
The prominence of “how-to” content
You just got engaged! It’s time to start thinking about the wed, but you’re not sure where to start. What is the first term or phrase you would search use Google or another search engine?
Thirteen percent of all the respondents’ hypothetical pursuits had “how to” in them, and the youngest respondents — millennials and Gen Zers — use it the most.
It provides as additional proof for what we already supposed: how-to content remains a staple in the content world.
And it attains appreciation, doesn’t it? How-tos not only lend themselves to the thrill of learning new information online( and the apparently endless number of things that are available to learn ); they also serve as a tool of empowerment. Even if you don’t know how to do something, you can figure it out only by going online and learning/ watching/ listening to content someone else put together for you.
If people continue to desire this type of content, how are you able make sure you’re incorporating it into your content designs accordingly?
Finding how-to possibilities
In some instances, it’s obvious how more how-to content can help your brand. Perhaps you’re a B2B SaaS company with a product designed to help teams collaborate online. You could write how-to clauses about improving communication, transitioning to a new converse patron, and slew of other topics.
It’s important to have these articles, because is not simply do they speak to a direct need of a certain audience, but they’re also directly related to your label offering. They’re rife with more natural call-to-action opportunities, and they demonstrate your willingness to help solve a problem.
This article by Brembo is a perfect illustration of this.
After the helpful guide, they have a CTA to 😛 TAGEND
“Just go to the configurator( www.moto.brembo.com) and participate some simple informed about your motorcycle such as brand, locomotive displacement, simulation and time. The configurator will search through the entire Brembo line and quickly indicate which Brembo products are available for the selected bike, even in particular the pad compounds.”
And voila! You have a helpful guide that ties directly into your product.
However, the trick is making sure you’re seizing every opportunity and not settling on just the obvious how-tos.
Here are some styles you can find creative new opportunities 😛 TAGEND Ask your audience. Run a poll on social media. Survey your email listing. Call your clients. Whatever your preferred method, ask what they want to see! Get to know their challenges better so you can create content that will address them.Research what’s being asked online. You can start by going to Answer the Public or utilizing BuzzSumo’s Questions tool. Both allow you to see what people are asking across the web seeing topics. But you can also look at similar content that exists and see what people are saying in the comments. Is there any distraction? Any points that still need to be covered? Talk to your sales squad. They’re the ones “on the ground” discussing potential obsesses and concerns from your clients and customers. If you haven’t already, put up a regular check in with the sales department so you can stay updated on what the issues are popping up that the marketing team can answer in its content.
Additionally, for labels that is likely to not have clear theories for how-to content, it’s important to explore top-of-the-funnel opportunities, which you can do using the same tactics above.
Top-of-the-funnel means that, while the how-to guides might not be directly related to your service offering, they’re still good for introducing your label to people who are interested in your general industry.
For example, like many other food brands, King Arthur’s Flour has recipes involving flour on their site. However, unlike many other food brands, their section, “How to shape high-rising cookies” has more than 94,000 participations on Facebook, according to BuzzSumo.
Now, this is arguably middle-of-the-funnel because you need flour to establish the biscuits and it’s a flour company making the contents. But people looking this up probably already have flour in their homes. The benefit of the creation of this content is that now they’re familiar with this brand of flour, and if the recipe goes well, the government has more trust in this particular brand.
So, the section doesn’t have to be “how to choose the privilege type of flour.” It can be something your audience wants to know relevant to whatever it is you offer.
Getting creative with how-to content
Sometimes you want to create a guide that technically might already exist, but you was necessary to do a better task in one space or another.
That’s great! But it necessitates running the extra mile, anticipating outside the box, and every other cliche you can think of. And that doesn’t always mean doing something costly or extravagant.
For example, because of the COVID-1 9 pandemic, the CDC released a piece about how to clean your hands accurately. Rather than sticking to the diagrams you see in restaurant bathrooms, they created a clean list of steps followed by a video showing exactly how to execute each step.
Just the add-on of the videos stimulated the content much more valuable to readers.
I likewise enjoy this article from Taste of Home. I’ve read a million recipes on how to construct chocolate chip cookies( what? I have a sweet tooth !), but this is the first time I’ve envision one that helps you adapt a basic recipe to construct the best cookie for you.
The simple addition of this graphic adds an entirely new value to the piece that so many other variations absence by offering visual representations of textures for each recipe option.
So how can you achieve the same result? When you’ve decided on a topic to write about, follow the steps below 😛 TAGEND Sum up in one sentence exactly what you want to teach people. Be as specific as possible. This will stop you focused when you’re creatively brainstorming how to execute.Explore what other how-to content already exists and what they’re missing. Does the type of content work well for the topic? Is it too long, too confusing, too birthing? How are you able construct yours more understandable and more interesting? Constantly bookmark inspiration you come across. All kinds of content out there can provide you with creative hypothesis on how to execute a how-to guide. Put all of the links or images in a Google doc to create a sort of virtual vision board, or make it a habit to go to sites like https :// www.reddit.com/ r/ InternetIsBeautiful /. Judgment
Knowing that how-to content is always “re going to be” desired is a great prompt for examining its involvement in your strategy. Which of your previous how-to articles have performed the best, which have performed the worst, and what can you learn from both?
Hopefully the tips-off I’ve shared in this piece will help you explore new opportunities to serve your audience with step-by-step guidebooks. If you have more examples of how-to guides you adoration, share them with me in the comments below or on Twitter @ millanda!
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