05 Feb The Recruitment Agency Guide To Creating Better Content Than Any of Your Competitors
Content marketing is a tough process. You have to plan your content strategy in advance and then find the time to create good content. All of this while you’re juggling the many tasks that come with running a recruitment agency.
But how do you define good content? Is it content that gets a lot of shares and comments?
Is it content that you’re personally proud to have your agency’s name attached to? Content that gets a lot of traffic?
The Nature of Good Content
Think about all of the information you’ve consumed on the internet. Specifically, try to think of two or three pieces of content that were incredibly revelatory or really entertaining. You’ll soon come to the realization that good content can broadly be classified into two categories.
a. Content that is enjoyable or entertaining
Fun lists, picture galleries, satirical articles, memes and similar pieces of content can be classified as entertaining. They’re great for passing the time when you’re bored, such as on the way to work or on Friday afternoons when you’ve checked out for the week. These pieces of content are enjoyable, but you don’t necessarily learn anything from them. Entertaining content definitely has a place in your content strategy, but to truly impress your prospective clients and candidates, you will need to offer them something more valuable.
b. Content that teaches you something
You might have come across a long article or essay that looks intimidating on the page, but offers unique insight and valuable information. It might not be the most entertaining piece you’ve ever read, but the takeaways from it are much more valuable to your life. For example, an article about meditation that encourages you to take up a new habit that benefits your life tremendously. Or a post that teaches you new interviewing techniques you can implement immediately in your resourcing efforts.
When you’re creating content, you have to walk a fine line between these two categories. You want your content to be informative, but you don’t want your readers to fall asleep while they’re looking at it. You have to create entertaining content that still manages to inform your audience. Trying to compete with sites like Buzzfeed, which create lots of lists, pigeonholes your content creation style. It will stunt your evolution as a creator. If you constantly chase page views and shares, you’ll lose your unique voice. Don’t be afraid to create content that stirs up the pot occasionally. If you feel passionately about something, speak up. Your prospects will respect you for it.
Analyze Your Competition
To create better content than your competitors, you have to understand the kind of content they create and share on a regular basis. You can learn from the best-performing content in your niche to create pieces of your own. An effective way to do this is by using the skyscraper technique. Basically, you find the best piece of content about a particular topic and build on it to create an even better piece of content. Once you’ve created this content, you encourage relevant people in your market to share and link to it.
How do you reverse-engineer the best piece of content on your topic? You examine a few different factors.
How long is the content?
How many images does it have?
What keywords does it target?
How would you rank it on a scale of 1 to 10?
After you’ve examined these factors, you might want to dig a little deeper. Consider the following.
Does the content cater to beginners or experts?
Does the content cater to a very specific niche? If so, does a similar strategy apply to your audience?
Is the content based on current events or does it have a perennial appeal?
Does the content put forth controversial, unusual or passionate views?
Is the content trying to appeal to fears or insecurities that the target audience might have?
What you’re trying to do by examining these factors is understand what makes a specific piece of content more successful than the others. If the publisher’s style is vastly different than your own, this analysis will help you create an outline within which you can add in your unique flavor. Once you’ve gone through this process a few times, you’ll develop a reliable and consistent system for rating content.
Become an Authority
The skyscraper technique is a fantastic way to go about creating new content. Basically, this technique involves looking at the best-performing content for any topic and then building on it to create an even better piece of content. But, like most other marketing strategies, it doesn’t have a 100% success rate. On your content marketing journey, you might have discovered that some of your lesser posts get the most traffic, while some content that you’ve painstakingly put together via weeks of research and interviews hardly gets any.
You might also have come across certain bloggers and content creators who seem to have an endless reserve of good content. They may not always have to create lengthy, research-oriented content to appease their audience. They’ve become something far more important than content creators. They’ve become authorities in their niche. Being an authority gives you a unique edge over your competition, because you’re less vulnerable to the ups and downs of content marketing. With the recruitment market as saturated and competitive as it is (and increasing), being percieved as an authority in your niche should be at the top of your priority list.
An authority is not just someone who has the most knowledge about their subject. Authorities are experts who understand how to analyze data and convey information in a clear, understandable manner. Once you’ve created a sizable audience for your agency, by sharing your deep recruitnent and life wisdom, you can graduate to being an authority.
Here’s how to go about it:
Don’t be afraid to voice your opinion. Even if what you’re saying might ruffle a few feathers, put it out there.
Don’t indulge trolls. Walk away from toxic arguments and obvious haters. Unfortunately there are some people out there who have had bad experiences with some of the less ethical players in our industry and as such, have a negative view on all recruiters. Don’t get involved in discussions with these people.
Be respectful to your audience. Talk to people without patronizing them and participate in healthy discussions.
Don’t succumb to the lure of instant success. Using shady tools and marketing tactics might get you a few extra viewers in the short run, but it will ultimately be counterproductive and negatively affect your overall credibility.
Post content regularly. Consistency is key to earning a loyal audience. People should be able to rely on the frequency of your content.
Help other people in your niche. Collaborate with other content creators for guest posts and interviews.
There are several ways to go about creating good content. The process begins with an objective understanding of what works in your market and then letting it, along with your own unique voice, inform your agency’s content creation. Creating a couple of pieces of good content isn’t enough. For long-term success, you have to make a solid commitment to consistently creating high quality content that informs and engages the clients and candidates you want to attract.