I don’t know if you’ve made a content marketing resolution for 2017, but here’s one if you haven’t: Make this the year you focus on emotion.
We all have different reasons for producing and sharing content, whether it’s building an audience, engaging with it or stimulating discussion. Let’s be honest, too, and admit that most of us who work in the content business also have a commercial agenda.
A crucial thing to remember is that, ultimately, we tend to act on our emotions rather than on factual information. This is particularly true of buying decisions.
As the American poet and civil rights campaigner Maya Angelou once said, “People will forget what you said, they will forget what you did, but they will never forget how you made them feel.”
Here are six ways to ensure that you harness the power of emotion in your content marketing efforts this year.
Start by thinking about your target audience. What makes them tick? What do they really want? What inspires them? And what keeps them awake at night?
From earliest times, story-telling has been the most powerful form of human communication. So, come up with stories that will resonate with your audience. But make them believable; consumers are wise to brands that manipulate their feelings.
Try to draw people in by encouraging them to interact. Ask them questions, and invite them to comment on your content. Try polls and surveys, quizzes and competitions. Make them feel a part of what you’re doing.
Evidence repeatedly shows that we respond best to visual information. Images, particularly of people, also evoke emotional responses. So, prioritise videos, infographics, and perhaps cartoons, and always use a carefully chosen image to illustrate a blog post.
Clever design can also help to evoke an emotional response. Don’t make it bland and boring. Try something unusual. Incorporate elements of surprise. And remember that colours can be used to create different moods.
OK, this is a tricky one. You don’t want to offend people, but at the same time, you want them to take notice of your content, to read/ watch/ listen to it and, of course, to share it. So don’t be afraid to make a statement, to put your head above the parapet and to stand up for what you believe in (Timonier, one of our clients, did just that in their video).
Best of luck with your content marketing efforts in 2017. Feel free to contact us for advice, and do let us know how you’re getting on.