6 Types of Content Writing and Their Purposes
Content writing is much more than putting an idea into words. It reflects a well-defined objective and has multiple variants. Your mission is to guide the audience through the buying journey. This covers the initial awareness phase to closing sales and customer service.
Content writing is a very powerful tool implemented to gain the attention of an audience through multiple online platforms. It is a resource that allows us to provide a detailed message and to approach different points of view. It is also very accessible, as its creation and consumption is relatively simple, in terms of technology.
In this post, we'll cover:
Types of content
Content is the centerpiece of digital marketing. The relevance and quality of the message are as important as the suitability of the chosen format. Many types of content are available; choose one that best suits your goals to effectively reap its benefits.
While not mutually exclusive, there are types of content that work best for each stage of the sales funnel. Expert content writing services combine form and substance to identify the type of content that works best in each particular case.
Knowing the main characteristics of each type of content will help you target your marketing efforts:
Blogs came into existence almost at the same time as the Internet. They were the true architects of the democratization of information. Through blogs, all users were able to gain access to the media and make their opinions known. As such, its style is more conversational and direct than other pieces of content. Although things have changed over time, blogs have remained fluid and accessible.
Blog posts are an essential element of content writing. Few digital marketing strategies fail to employ this resource because it has proven to be very effective for SEO. To take full advantage of this effectiveness, the blogs need to connect to their audiences by responding to their interests, needs and concerns.
Search engines value the novelty and consistent updating of sites. Due to their characteristics, blogs are the ideal medium to maintain a constant flow of content. The key here is to ensure the coherence and consistency of publications. Ideally, the blog writers establish a schedule of publications, defining the topics and timetables, according to the site’s objectives.
A blog post is not advertising copy. It is useful and relevant content, related to the interests of the target audience. You will only be recognized by the search engines and rewarded with a good ranking if you meet these requirements. To do this, it is necessary to know how the audience speaks and then incorporate and optimize the keywords relevant to the audience, without losing a sense of naturalness.
The three basic rules for writing a blog are:
- Publish consistently and frequently
- Include calls to action in every post
- Link different blog posts to each other and to external content
Perhaps somewhere along the way, you have heard about the appropriate length of texts, but this is a moot point. On average, publications are between 1,000 and 2,000 words long. But the quality of the content is more important than the quantity. You should also adjust your content to the reading preferences of your audience. In some cases, shorter or longer texts may work better.
What is the purpose of a blog post?
The approachable tone and expressive clarity of blogs make them great fodder for conversation. Their contents tend to be widely shared, which increases their dissemination potential. They are also excellent for directing traffic to the associated organization’s website. In addition to building relationships and trust, they can be used to build brand authority.
With the advent of blogs and their rise in popularity, the line between an article and a blog continues to blur every day. Since blogs are no longer simply spaces for expressing opinions, the content can look very similar. Generally, we speak of articles when we refer to publications made available to the public in other media. These can be digital magazines. newspapers, news portals or even sites like Wikipedia.
On the other hand, articles tend to be longer and may include references to third parties, interviews and various sources of information. Therefore, their perspective is more unbiased, and the content is focused on conveying information or news.
For articles, the writing style is usually more impersonal. The grammatical structure tends to be conventional, usually avoiding idioms and colloquial expressions. The blog, on the other hand, is more casual and can include slang and winks to the reader. Blogs are arguably a more dramatic form of writing where punctuation and word usage are intended to generate emotion. An article, on the other hand, reflects neutrality and formality. In fact, articles are traditionally written in the third person, while blogs give priority to the first person voice.
Moreover, articles are static content. They are generally organized by subject or author rather than by date of publication. The article is an enduring reference, linked to a precise time. As a rule, it is not updated and, if updated, only to correct facts.
What is the purpose of an article?
Blogs seek to retain audiences on a site or redirect them to a landing page. The purpose of an article is to provide knowledge or information on a certain topic, such as, for example, a current event, research progress or a notable figure. In this sense, they can contribute to building authority. Brands that share with their audiences what’s new in their industry tend to be perceived as subject matter experts.
Guides are texts that explain a subject in detail. They are didactic materials that seeks to answer the questions of the audience. They should provide comprehensive and complete, but concise and clear information. There is no contradiction between these terms. The reader should find all the explanations they need, with precise and user-friendly data or instructions.
Writing a guide requires sound and in-depth knowledge of the subject matter and advanced communication skills. The task is to convert complex material into accessible content that is easy to comprehend. The use of similes and comparisons is a successful strategy. Explanations should be detailed but not to the extent that the reader feels overwhelmed.
Guides are generally long texts as they provide a thorough description of processes, uses, components or how something works. They can refer to products, services or ideas. The important thing is that the audience is able to digest the content without difficulty. Use precise and practical terms to express yourself and avoid digressing into irrelevant topics. Make sure the text is inviting to read and has a friendly design. You can complement the information with graphics or illustrations to make it more entertaining.
On the other hand, it is advisable to use keywords with low competition in the guide. As the content is usually long, it will be easier to include the keywords without making them look forced. This will improve your SEO positioning.
What is the purpose of a guide?
Addressing the concerns and queries of your audience and sharing your industry knowledge will strengthen your brand’s leadership. In addition to establishing your position as lead generators, the guides will allow you to stay present in the minds of your audience and become a reference.
Old blog posts can be transformed into guides to leverage existing content. Repackaging content can become a marketing tool. Generally, guides are used as calls to action to collect audience data or generate future opportunities for interaction.
Over time, it may be necessary to update guides, but this is certainly a necessary and beneficial optimization of resources. This will be less time consuming and will allow you to contact new potential customers.
That said, by demonstrating your knowledge and expertise, you’ll also be working on your brand authority.
Tutorials are similar to guides. Perhaps the most notable difference is that they focus exclusively on the “how” of doing something. You could even say that they are a kind of instruction manual. The explanations are often accompanied by illustrations or photographs.
The key word in tutorial content is “how to.” Answering this question is the aim of the text. Keep in mind that a tutorial can be the transcription of content that will serve as the basis for audiovisual material.
Since a tutorial describes a method or a set of steps or rules, it is common to follow a step-by-step structure. Breaking down a complex task into smaller concrete activities makes it easier to follow the process and to correct or detect errors early on. Be sure to include the end result. It is even recommended that you show how progress can be assessed at the end of each phase.
What is the purpose of a tutorial?
Like guides, tutorials are written by persons with authority on a subject. They are also used as resources to maintain the visibility of a brand vis-à-vis your audience. Once you’ve identified yourself as an expert, your audience will come directly to your site looking for answers for related queries.
Tutorials are also tools that allow you to generate leads and nurture your database of potential customers. They can be enhanced by incorporating previous content. What’s more, they can be used to demonstrate the usefulness or application of a product. For example, many brands use DIY tutorials to give their products a presence with instructional content.
As the name suggests, these are books published in digital format, both in HTML and downloadable in a PDF format. It is an extensive content, which allows the writer to offer considerable detail on a subject. The topics vary widely. E-books can also be compilations of articles, blogs, interviews or expert advice.
This type of content allows you to demonstrate authority and knowledge on a particular topic. E-books usually focus on issues that arouse a lot of interest in the audience. The popularity of the subject will be directly proportional to the possibility of monetizing this type of content writing.
The advantage of e-books is that they are more practical for readers. They prefer to download the book and have all the information at hand, instead of looking it up on the blog or site.
Writing electronic books
As it contains greater and more extensive content, writing an e-book requires time and research. Having an editorial plan is essential to maintain the coherence of the text. Close attention should also be paid to the quality of the writing. Although it is not essential that the information be timeless, the longer the content retains its relevancy in terms of trends and data, the more profitable the e-book will be.
It is advisable to divide the text into chapters and provide the reader with a content guide. Other elements that facilitate reading are the inclusion of vignettes, the use of graphic materials and typographic resources. Pay attention to the choice of the title because that will be the first opportunity to grab your audience’s attention.
E-books may contain information about products or services. However, promotional messages should be subtle. In any case, avoid spending more than 5% to 10% of your content talking directly about your brand. Focus on the answers your audience is looking for.
What is the purpose of an e-book?
E-books are very useful for B2B marketing. Business customers are more willing to provide their data in exchange for relevant information. This is also ideal for obtaining leads. Of course, the potential of e-books to build authority and consolidate brand reputation should not be overlooked either. E-books have a third purpose as well. They are a resource to accompany the potential customer, guiding them as they move forward in the sales funnel. They offer customized information that often delves deeper into the subjects of your audience’s interests.
Case studies put into practice the phrase “let your actions speak louder than your words.” They serve as an opportunity to demonstrate through facts how you have solved a problem. This type of content can take the form of an e-book, blog post or research paper. Case studies are highly respected because they present unquestionable, concrete data. They are also a great way to exhibit to your audience what you do and how you do it.
Case studies can be seen as testimonies of experience. This is why they are widely used in B2B communications.
Writing case studies
The selection of the content of the case study is fundamental to achieve the proposed objective. The example should correspond perfectly with the values you want to highlight. It is also important that the case study is supported by accurate and verifiable data.
Be sure to clearly define what issue has been resolved and describe in detail how you achieved this. The use of tables or graphs that facilitate the processing of the information are convenient to supporting your position. You can also highlight key concepts or data in bullet points. The case study should include a moving conclusion with a powerful call to action.
What is the purpose of a case study?
Case studies help to establish authority on a topic and to attract the attention of a potential customer. They are often presented as downloadable files, which require a subscription. Consequently, they are effective lead generators.
Expert content writing services combine form and substance to identify the type of content that works best in each particular case. Among other things, they relieve marketers of time-consuming and potentially challenging tasks. Consider that, in addition to creating the texts, content marketing involves significant planning and management work. It is necessary to research keywords, optimize for SEO, identify relevant content and distribute it over time while managing budgets and evaluating results.