Content marketing isn’t easy. In fact, every new day means that it becomes a bit more difficult to get your content in front of the right audience: Ever-changing algorithms on SoMe and Google, tighter spam filters, and competitors upping their game… The list goes on and the fight for attention is on.
So how can you make your content stand out? Most marketers’ auto-response would be to market louder by increasing budgets and making more noisy creatives that your audience simply can’t avoid. The flipsides here are increased costs and annoyance with your brand.
So, how about walking a different path when driving attention to your content?
“When everybody zigs, zag.”
This quote by Stephen Anderson is more relevant than ever. Getting your content to stand out is a core challenge and differentiating starts with being able to do something different from what others do. The world doesn’t need another cooking channel on YouTube or another blog on cryptocurrency. It will just drown in the red-content ocean. Rather you need to stand out with how you tell your story, the audience you want to tell it to, or even better: A combination of the two above-mentioned.
Method 1: Dive deeper into your niche
In essence, you can only attract the attention of your audience if you know what they want. What do they want to achieve and how can you help them reach that goal? Do they want to become better chefs by watching inspiring cooking videos? Or get rich by understanding what’s going on in crypto via blog updates?
That could be the promise of any cooking or crypto channel. We just agreed that there’s plenty of content already, so if you end up here you probably need to target a more specific audience by asking: What’s the niche in your niche? Outdoor cooking? Cooking with your teenage kid? The French Cuisine?
This part is even more important to nail if organic search is a key part of your traffic sources. The more specific you can be on a topic, the better odds you get for getting your content picked up by Googler or other search engines. Because people are looking for specific answers to what’s on their mind when they use a search engine.
Method 2: Find your content tilt
In a competitive and fragmented media world, the content tilt is important to get right. Bestselling author of “Content Inc.”, Joe Pulizzi, defines the content tilt as “the area of little to no competition on the web that gives you a chance to break through the noise and become relevant”.
Sounds simple, but how do you find your content tilt? By telling a different story.
It can be different in terms of tone of voice. Maybe you are in a conservative industry that needs to be shaken up a bit. Or the use of imagery could be more authentic than just the regular stock photos? It’s usually a combination of several things that makes the difference here.
It can be different by taking another approach. Or a new angle as journalists would say. If there are a lot of opinions in your industry, you could stand out by telling fact-based or scientific stories.
Or you can tell a different story by choosing an unusual platform. Did anyone in your industry launch a podcast or a TikTok channel yet? If not (and given that the audience may look for your content there), there is an opportunity for you to break the channel habit and become a first mover on a specific platform.
How Miild exploited a content gap in the cosmetics industry
Miild is a fast-growing Danish cosmetics brand founded by two young makeup artists and friends Tine Emilie Svendsen and Tanja Gregersen. They have based all their content assets and brand positioning on standing out from traditional cosmetics brands. Here’s their story:
Prior to launching Miild Tine was suffering from severe allergic reactions caused by chemicals in cosmetics. She and Tanja realized that many other people had problems wearing cosmetics for the same reason. The girls were not pleased with the way the main cosmetics brands communicated; the lack of transparency was obvious. So, they decided to create sustainable and hypoallergic makeup products from scratch.
A bold concept that was supported by their content marketing efforts stood out. They launched the blog thisispure.dk talking about their ambition and ongoing process. They were not afraid of talking more about the chemicals in cosmetics products and using nonperfect images in their stories.
That helped them stand out from the crowd and build a large audience while developing the first products. They gained trust from their audience by publishing content on a regular basis and benefitted from high demand when the products were ready and certified several months after launching the blog. In fact, their audience was willing to spend four hours in line for getting makeup done by Tine or Tanja at a prelaunch event. A strong proof point, at a time when nobody knew whether the products were great or not.
A key lesson from Miild: You need courage to stand out, find your niche and tell a different story in order to attract an audience and connect with them.
So how can you go deeper into your niche or tilt your content today?
About the author
Joakim Ditlev is a Danish content marketing specialist, business development consultant and author of the book, Content Marketing Bogen. Recently, he has done European research for the latest edition of Joe Pulizzi’s book, Content Inc. that bridges content creation and entrepreneurship. The bestselling book is also available as a Danish audio book – narrated by Joakim.