How to Write Engaging Content: 7 Expert Tips

If you want to be successful in the online world, it’s essential that you learn how to write engaging content. This is true whether you’re trying to sell products or services, running a blog or simply looking to build your brand online. If you can capture and hold your audience’s attention, you’re well on your way to success. In this blog post, we’ll discuss some tips and tricks to help you write content that engages your readers from start to finish.

1. Identify Your Audience

One important tip to keep in mind is to write with a specific audience in mind. It’s not enough to simply write interesting content – you need to write content that will appeal to your target reader. By understanding who your audience is and what they’re looking for, you can ensure that your content hits the mark every time.

Who are your ideal clients? I’ll give you a clue: It’s NOT everyone. Think about your last 10 clients. Which ones did you most enjoy dealing with? Which are your most profitable clients? Who are your advocates? Think ideal customers, not just anyone because you want your message to truly resonate with those you most want to buy your product or use your service.

Business owners: Consider the last ten clients you’ve worked with. Which ones have been the most enjoyable to work with? Whose opinions do you value the most? Who are your champions?

Get to know your target readers

To write engaging content, it’s quite useful to create an Ideal Client Profile (ICP) or a client avatar first. If you have more than one target market for your products or services, you may create an ICP for each of them. This article has further information on ICPs and how you can create one.

When thinking of our target audience, we need to consider what will gain their confidence. For example, think about young Mums, then consider what their problems are, what concerns they may have and what keeps them up at night). Now think about tradies, what are their concerns? These two audiences are unlikely to have the same set of problems and concerns. This illustrates why you need to consider your audience before you write.

It’s also critical to understand what phase of the customer journey they’re at… Are they potential customers? On your email list (nurturing them), a new client, or a long-term client?

When writing a piece of online content, it’s essential to focus on one specific target audience at a time.

2. Identify Your Topic & Start an Outline

It’s vital to know who’s reading your message and what outcome they want. Think about the questions and issues your ideal clients have. What topics are they searching for on Google? You need to address their questions and issues if you want to connect with them.

Think about your reader’s intent. Why are they reading your blog post or website copy? How can you build trust, answer their questions and establish a relationship? Sharing stories and vital information related to your product or service is a great place to start.

Answering these questions will help you write interesting and relevant content that appeals to your audience. Once you’ve noted what they want, start by creating an outline of the main points you wish to share. This will give your writing structure and ensure you don’t overlook any important information.

3. Know the Purpose of Your Message

Those who write engaging content always determine their purpose first. Your online content may be intended to:

  • Enhance your Google ranking for a particular keyword or phrase
  • Build the “Know, Like and Trust factor” with your potential customers
  • Build your business’ credibility
  • Showcase your expertise
  • Build brand awareness
  • Tell an interesting story – they are easy for people to repeat to others
  • Drive sales – i.e. BUY NOW!

Before you start writing, get clear on the purpose of your message. What are you trying to achieve with this piece of online content? Do you want to inform, educate or entertain the reader? Do you want the reader to call your business now? Click on a link? Or Buy Now? Once you know the purpose of your message, you can start to craft content that is specifically designed to achieve that goal.

If you’re writing for entertainment, for example, you’ll want to focus on creating an engaging and enjoyable reading experience. This means using a light, conversational tone, keeping your sentences short and to the point, and using humour whenever possible.

However, if you’re writing to inform your readers, you’ll want to focus on creating content that is informative, useful and potentially shareable. This means using a more professional tone, including plenty of facts and data to support your claims.

How to write engaging content, writing for the web, online content writing, professional content
Infographic: How to write engaging content

4. Write Engaging Content that Addresses a Problem or Issue

When we want to know the answer to a question or problem – what’s the first thing we do? Typically, we Google it, of course! So, if your website content or blog post directly answers the question on your prospect’s lips, you’re much more likely to get noticed.

Benefits vs Features

We’re all human and we simply want to know “what’s in it for me?”. Features are the things your product does, usually descriptive or technical. Benefits are the outcomes users experience and define why the features matter to your customers. When demonstrating “what’s in it for me” benefits will often override features.

Remember, you want to present valuable information that solves your readers’ problem. Writing online content is about persuading your target audience, not doing a hard sell, particularly on social media, which should always be 80% social, informative and engaging, and 20% or less sales messages. Do you choose to follow someone simply to be sold to? NO!

5. Use a Clear Tone of Voice

What does Tone of Voice mean? TOV is the way you say something. It reflects your brand personality, helps you connect with your audience, and makes you different from the rest.

TOV is how your brand chooses to communicate with your audience, including the choice of words, communication style and emotional tone. This can sometimes change based on what is most appropriate for the situation and who you are targeting.

When it comes to writing engaging content, your TOV can make all the difference. A conversational, friendly tone will help you connect with your readers and build rapport. On the other hand, a more serious or formal tone might be more appropriate if you’re discussing a serious or sensitive topic.

Depending on your TOV, your brand will have its own style, defined by the words you use, their tone and the frequency with which you use them. Based on their profession and target audience, a doctor or lawyer is more likely to use a formal tone. Whereas a hairdresser or tradie is more likely to use everyday language or possibly slang.

As an example, in your brand TOV, what would you call a child? Child, kid, kiddy, kidlet, youngster, young one, little tacker, ankle-biter?

Whichever tone you choose, make sure it’s consistent throughout your blog post, social media post or web page. This will help create a cohesive piece that flows well and is easy to read.

6. Write Content that Persuades the Reader

No matter where it appears, great copy is persuasive. It targets pain points, overcomes objections and convinces the reader to take the desired action.

Why should someone buy your product or service? Your content needs to clearly and concisely inform the reader, so they will be ready to take action once you prompt them to do so (or before).

Identify the emotions that you’re trying to trigger from the reader and find the right word combination to reach into those feelings. Tell a compelling story that’s easy to remember and share.

So, what are you really selling? Here are some examples:

  • A diamond ring – Not simply a piece of jewellery; you’re selling luxury and prestige.
  • An insurance policy – Not just insurance; you’re selling protection and peace of mind.
  • A beachside property – Not just a home; you’re selling a desirable/aspirational lifestyle.

Determine the emotional connection to your product or service, as in the above examples.

Always be sure to tell your readers what you want them to do next. This is called a Call to Action. Clearly state whether you want them to contact you and how or where to do that – a link works best, if you want them to BUY NOW – a button works well for this or if you want them to SIGN UP for your mailing list – use a button and/or a link in your text. Just be sure they can quickly and easily take the next step.

7. A Final Checklist to Ensure Your Content Hits the Mark

  • Does your headline grab attention and accurately reflect the content of your article?
  • Read your content out loud – how does it sound?
  • Is your message concise, well-written and easy to understand?
  • Does your content tell a story?
  • Does the content clearly help readers to solve their problem?
  • Is the style appropriate for your audience and subject matter?
  • Have you used short, concise sentences and paragraphs to keep your readers engaged?
  • Have you included images, infographics or a video related to your topic?
  • Have you broken up the text with sub-headings and bullet points and images?
  • Have you used examples/analogies?
  • Ask someone else to read your content – do they feel involved? Ready to respond?
  • Be sure to check for typos
  • Check your spelling
  • Check your grammar
  • Does your content end with a bang?
  • Have you included a clear Call to Action – what do you want the reader to do after reading?
And just before you go ….

We hope this article has provided some helpful tips that will help you write engaging content.

Do you use your business’ blog? Want to know the secrets to writing fantastic business blog posts ? We’re working on a Blogging for Business course. In this course, you’ll learn a system that helps you generate loads of topic ideas and shows how you can quickly and easily write posts to connect with your ideal clients. Click here to receive updates on the upcoming release of this revolutionary course – and get ready to welcome more clients!

Need the professionals to write blog posts or website content for you? Reach out to us via our Contact page.

Please feel free to share these tips with your business associates or LinkedIn connections. Go ahead and connect with Lyndall on LinkedIn.

You may also enjoy reading these articles:

How to Connect with your Target Audience

How to Write a Compelling About Us Page

Storytelling to Stand Out from your Competitors

Want to know more?

Hi, I’m Lyndall Guinery-Smith, business owner and chief word wrangler at The Professional Writer. My team and I write content dedicated to attracting and engaging your ideal clients … and improving your bottom line. This includes website content – we LOVE writing About Us pages, business award nominations, capability statements, company profiles, team bios, blog post packages, and more. We happily work with clients all over Australia. Email us to arrange an  obligation-free discussion about your latest project.

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