Many companies implement a content marketing strategy without really knowing the nuances on making it effective. They often publish random material that is not in line with information that enhances their brand’s thought leadership.
This articles highlights some of the problems in defining the quality of content on websites and blogs that are created for the purpose of digital marketing, and why this is so.
Why Do We Live in a Time of Average and Low-Quality Content?
The fact is that today there’s much more low-quality than high-quality content, so it may be good to start with the question – why is that? Of course, there are a number of reasons for this situation, but there are 3 main characteristics of modern society that can pose as the answer to the question asked.
- We live in a time of superficiality. People don’t have the time, knowledge, or nerves to dedicate themselves more seriously to creating content (the same is true for practically all human activities).
- Creating quality content isn’t easy. It takes a lot of knowledge and experience to create content that meets the needs of the people for whom it’s intended and that, at the same time, meets the needs of those on whose behalf it was created.
- In many areas, sales don’t depend much on the quality of creating certain content, meaning that sales are likely to occur regardless of how products and services are described. It’s a completely different story about whether better quality content could significantly affect the increase in sales or not.
So, a large amount of low-quality and average content still survives because such content often brings at least some effects.
A website with amazing content is nothing without the right presentation and vice versa – content is nothing without a well-designed or successfully redesigned website. These two factors go hand in hand to form a high level of user engagement, conversion rates, and search engine rankings.
Also, your content has to be visible all the time, meaning that a website or blog on which it’s showcased must be live 24/7. To have that, you’ll need quality web hosting to keep your website/blog running uninterruptedly.
Problems With Defining Quality and Relevant Content
One of the definitions of quality is a unique characteristic or multiple characteristics possessed by someone or something and the standard of comparing those characteristics with related characteristics of someone or something. From this definition, one can actually see one of the biggest problems of the definition of quality and that’s the subjectivity of assessing what quality means to someone.
One of the definitions of relevance is when someone or something is in line with the time, circumstances, or current moment. It can be seen from this definition that even something that isn’t good can be relevant.
When talking/writing about the quality and relevance of content, several methods are used to avoid the formal meaning of these terms in practice: when defining them, the results produced by the content (performance) are taken, the characteristics of the content that contribute to the goals of their creation are observed (objectivization), high quality and excellent contents are defined, etc.
- It can be said that quality content meets the needs of those for whom it’s intended and, at the same time, achieves the goals of those on whose behalf it was created. From a business point of view, quality content meets the needs of target groups and company goals.
- The main characteristic of relevant content is that they are created more in accordance with a phenomenon or topic, compared to most other content. Relevant content better represents a phenomenon or topic than most other content.
Basic Characteristics of Quality Content and Examples
The most important characteristic of quality content is that it should be useful to the target group for which it’s intended and that it shouldn’t be boring. Additional quality is achieved by creating content that should be current, informative, interesting, and usable. Not every quality content needs to have all these features, but the more of these additional features, the better the content.
The 3 basic technical characteristics of the content are:
That the font is large enough so that the text can be easily read, that the contrast of background colors and the text itself doesn’t make the reader tired, that huge sentences and huge passages that are difficult to read aren’t used, and that the text doesn’t have many spelling and grammatical errors. In this way, greater user engagement is achieved.
That the text is initially created so that it can be seen on search engines (HTML text) and that it wasn’t created inside an image or in some other technology that search engines don’t see. If there’s an image, video, or audio content, there must be a textual description of these types of content. This makes it easier to see the text on search engines.
That the text is technically created in such a way that it’s easy to share via social networks, to have an easily accessible link (URL), title, description, image, video… In this way, easier sharing of content on social networks is achieved, leading to a larger audience that can read it.
The 3 Basic Recommendations on How to Create Content and How to Describe the Topic
1. How understandably and simply the content was explained/written?
Given that people today are superficial and uninterested, their attention needs to be attracted. The more complicated and less understandable the created content is, the consumption of such content by more people is less likely.
2. How was the description and context of the topic chosen in relation to the interests of the target group?
Is the content trivial and/or can be found everywhere (there’s nothing new and unique in it)? Are there unique points of view in the content, unknown details, a different angle of observation of the topic in relation to other content…?
3. How realistically is the topic covered or was it explained that it was only about a segment of that topic?
One of the important rules of the web is that there’s always someone who knows the topic you’re dealing with more and better than you. The practical rule is that such persons, due to their interest in the topic, are very likely to come to see such content. And they won’t react if there are no major omissions in such content.
The more often and more you cover the topics for which you create content, the sooner you’ll get into a situation where your users return to your content. Otherwise, your knowledge we’ll be inadequate for the given topics. The latter often happens because of the superficiality in which we live.
What Does It Take to Create Content That’s Better Than Most Other Content in Chosen Areas?
It takes time, knowledge, and experience to do any job well. The same is in the case of creating quality content. In order to create better quality content than most others in the chosen niche, you’d need above-average knowledge and experience. That’s the reason why there isn’t that much very high-quality content.
This is important: The biggest problems of making a significant step forward in the quality of the created content are the lack of quality research and quality conclusions about the results of that research.
We’ve singled out 6 main reasons why we think that it isn’t easy to create very high quality and relevant content:
- Ways of evaluating and assessing existing competitors’ content and decisions on how to create better/different relevant content. In other words, research into existing content.
- Objective understanding and recognition of quality content. This includes finding and realistically assessing reference content. In other words, what the definition of quality content is for you.
- Applying and adapting the way content is created in relation to the adopted best practice. This is about the context of the needs of users and the company: selection and adaptation of topics, linking quality content, etc.
- Ways of applying the thinking about the same phenomenon from different angles – mostly because of a better understanding of user needs.
- Easy “entry” into various “complicated” (unknown) areas. This comes from the need to master analytical skills – highlighting fewer and more important segments of the chosen topic.
- Taking into account the structure of the content – the flow of content, the importance of individual parts of the content, ways of creating subtitles, etc.
The Difference Between Relevant and Reference Content
As relevant content is better than most content on a similar topic, they are very often well visible on search engines.
Google defines relevant content as valuable to users. Such content should be:
- Useful and informative
- More valuable and useful than other content
- Of high quality
- To engage users in order to achieve the goal of creating content
The 3 basic qualitative characteristics of content performance:
- Relevant content is visible because it’s often high in search results and users are prone to like it and share it on social media.
- Relevant content creates good user engagement because it achieves its goals.
- Relevant content significantly affects user loyalty, especially if this type of content is created frequently
How Do You Know If Your Content Is Relevant or Referenced?
- Your content is often linked by other sources that aren’t related to you (you haven’t asked someone to share your content or to include it in their texts).
- When the observed topic is mentioned, one of the recommended contents from that area is your content.
- When the media looks for a collocutor from the observed topic, they often call you because of the relevance of the content you publish.
The reference content from the observed area is recommended by the largest number of relevant persons. Reference contents are the highest quality contents from the observed area, and they are the contents that should be consumed first from the selected topic.
If relevant content is difficult to create, it’s logical that reference content is even more difficult to create. So, in general, significant improvement in the quality of content requires time, knowledge, and experience.