Let’s face it – writing epic content is hard. But you know what’s harder than that? It’s getting some attention from the people that matter – your audience.
And, nobody cares about it when you have mediocre content on offer.
What’s mediocre content? It’s the same advice your audience is tired of getting from nearly everyone on the Internet.
Look, you can’t really blame it on your audience because they’re practically flooded with advice that hasn’t helped them much in the past. So their disillusionment is only reasonable.
If you wouldn’t read every article you find on social media, why would they?
The point is you need to try harder and make your content more useful for your audience.
You don’t simply write content for your audience; you offer solutions for their problems. And, your solutions need to be practical, useful and actionable.
That’s exactly what makes creating epic content a tricky and time consuming affair. And, if you’re not ready to put the effort into creating content that truly counts, your audience has a reason to ignore your advice.
What is Epic Content Like?
I recently came across this mind-boggling post on BoostBlogTraffic. The post is very long but worth a read. The author has shared some very useful tips on how to create epic content. According to the author, epic content pieces share some common characteristics:
It’s extremely useful: Epic content pieces are useful and often, action-oriented. They help you do something better. Sometimes, they show you the ways to doing things you’d never thought possible. And, sometimes, they share invaluable tips, tricks, and tools with you to boost your productivity like never before.
So, the next time you’re going to sit down to write an article, make sure you explore the potential challenge your audience is faced with, and try to find solutions to help them resolve it.
It’s very detailed: We’re living in the world of long form content. After all, if an article is not detailed enough, it’s less likely to solve a problem. In this detailed post, Neil Patel has illustrated how content length affects rankings and conversions.
To begin with, detailed articles indicate the authority of the author on the subject matter. Plus, it shows that they have done their research and cited reputable sources to back their claim. More often than not, you can’t achieve this feat in 500 words or so.
So, if you’re passionate about creating content to solve a problem, it’s likely to be a fairly long and detailed piece. Hence, it’s a strong indicator of epic content.
[Tweet “Nobody wants to read boring content just as nobody wants to listen to a boring speech.”]
Your content needs to have the punch and personality to keep the audience engrossed. In short, you need to know the art of storytelling. According to Demian Farnworth from Copyblogger, empathy is crucial to storytelling. You need to understand, see and relate to the reader’s views in order to tell a story that resonates with them.
In short, storytelling breathes life into your content and makes it epic.
[Tweet “So, don’t just write a piece of advice; tell them an epic story.”]
It’s visually attractive: In the age of social media, visual content tends to be more effective than text. The increasing popularity of memes and infographics stand testimony to this. Therefore, make use of popular tools to create visuals that support your claims and engage your audience.
Use the following FREE tools to build appealing images:
How long it takes to create epic content, you ask?
The first thing you must realize is that creating epic content takes a boatload of time. Because, frankly, it’s not a two-hour process.
All the popular bloggers including Neil Patel, Brian Dean and Glen Alsopp have openly shared the amount of time it takes for them to create epic content. Sometimes it could take a week and sometimes, it can be an entire month. It just depends on the amount time you take to research your topics because this is the single most crucial factor in making your content what it can potentially be – epic shit.
How to Craft Epic Content
Find a problem. Finding the right problem is the stepping stone to building epic content. Even though it may look like there is an article already written for every problem, there are still too many problems to solve or different perspective to develop around an existing solution. All you need to do is think creatively.
Finding a problem is complex and ongoing process. It’s not something you do for the sole purpose of creating content. It’s part of your daily habits. It’s what you can’t do without. If you’re a regular visitor of Quora, you would have come across enough inspirations to solve problems.
There are a lot of people who don’t have time to do the research and curate information on the Internet. They are an important part of your audience. By doing the research and curating quality information in a structured manner, you’re not only saving their precious time, but establishing yourself as a go-to person in front of them as well.
Quora, Twitter and Reddit are some of the must-visit places for you to understand what people want and their problems. Once you establish empathy for your potential audience, the inspiration to solve their problems will come to you naturally.
Research your topics: Epic content requires insane amount of research even though you think you know the subject quite well. Just like you, many other are doing in-depth research on the subject and their works have been published on the Internet. Take advantage of the research, document it and use it as your resource for your article.
Try to find what industry leaders have to say on the topic and quote them in your article with link back to the original sources. Find a popular reply on Quora or Tweet from a thought-leader and mention them in your post to make your content more credible. These are just some of the ways to build authority and make your content definitive.
Document your research: Research is an ongoing process. You’re likely to come across survey which may not be relevant to your current research, but it makes a lot of sense to document it for future reference. You need to create Google Spreadsheet or use Evernote to document what you find useful along the way. You can’t rely on your memory or bookmark everything. You must document your research properly to make it easy for you to come back to refer to it later.
Write Passionately: Epic content pieces have emotions. They must empathize with the reader to tug at their heartstrings. It’s like an artist performing on stage. You can’t fake it. The words have to come out naturally in order to make a strong impact on your audience. So write only when you feel like. Write in pieces like a script writer. Write whatever comes to your mind and whenever you feel like even if it’s just a sentence or a tweet in 140 characters. Every single sentence can potentially make an impact only when it sounds natural.
Edit Ruthlessly: Don’t be on a rush to hit publish until you’ve proofread your draft thoroughly. Be ruthless with yourself. Try to weed out the fluff to bring out more clarity. Let each and every sentence flow naturally. Keep looking for typos and read out loud to get a feel for words. If you must see the published version before publishing it, then use the preview mode to see what it looks like.
The editing process has to be extremely meticulous but it’s totally worth the effort.
#1 – Explore the problems your audience are faced with.
#2 – Research your topics well and document your research.
#3 – Put emotions into your writing and empathize with your readers.
#4 – Offer tools and actionable advice.
#5 – Edit your draft relentlessly and make your content scannable.
Hope you find this post useful. If you do, don’t forget to share it with your friends.