A website without personality is like that person you’re stuck talking to who’s just . . . well . . . boring. Like the dentist who just drones on and on with you as their captive audience (if only the novocaine dulled one’s hearing!). You can nod distractedly and smile absently, but eventually you will have to fake a phone call–or pretend to fall asleep–to escape their clutches. And you can always bounce off that website, right?
What’s worse is when you genuinely need to engage with the boring person–or for the sake of this article, a boring website: you dread logging in but it has information that’s important for you to do your job. You have few options other than biting the bullet and dealing with the boredom.
What if people feel this way about your website? Let’s make sure it’s not. Here’s how to inject your online content with personality:
Eat Your Veggies
You know you need to do it. You know it’s important and good for you. But it doesn’t make the process any less painful if you’re not a fan of vegetables. Your website content should be less like eggplant and Brussel sprouts and much more like that carrot your Mom used to sneak into the spaghetti. You know it’s there and nutritious, but you can ignore it because it’s covered up with ooey gooey tomato sauce, yummy spices and maybe even some melted cheese.
Your content should have plenty of great information, but smothered with so many benefits that your customers will want to dive right in and come back for more.
Say No to Static Content
Ahh, the early 2000s. Time of the brochureware, when marketing geniuses decided that they would take this new thing called the internet and use it to publish their boring sales brochures. These websites rarely had original content, and once the site was built it was static for months or even years unless an offering changed.
Even in 2010, Forbes was exhorting the masses to steer clear of these ho-hum web properties and invest in creating websites that engage and delight your audience. Today’s content marketing strategies are multi-faceted and complex, including layers of information that will appeal to various subsegments of your audience. What does all of this content have in common?
Personality: the “special something” that makes a website engaging. Like that hilarious dentist whose stories are worth another root canal procedure. Why shouldn’t you leverage the same personality for your website that you use to engage with people in real life?
Speak in Your Brand’s Voice
Hardcore, well-trained writers often take the time to create highly detailed personas, assigning attitudes and interests to their audience segments. Are your marketers spending the same amount of time ensuring that the overall voice of your brand shines brightly through?
Whether happy, perky and lighthearted or corporate and a bit stodgy, your website should have some sort of personality that represents your brand. Loads of text-heavy web pages are dull and dry and can be a pain to wade through. Lighten things up by using headers, images, bullets, and fun!
Imagine that: actually having fun with your content! When you’re enjoying yourself, your prospects and customers will feel that energy right through the computer monitor or smartphone screen and want to engage with your brand.
Beat Your Competitors
Let’s face it. Marketers and content writers tend to be a competitive lot. We don’t want to simply create a piece of content. We want to crush the competition by adding unique value to the brands we support. We want to slay at SEO. We want Google to fall in love with our blog posts and landing pages. We want audiences to use the information we provide to form a deep and abiding engagement with our brands.
Personality is the special sauce that helps distinguish one website from a sea of similar competitors by speaking directly to your ideal customers and prospects. Really exceptional content, delivered on the appropriate timeline, can be responsible for activating your audience from being passive appreciators to rabid, raving fans of your brand.
Isn’t that what it’s all about?
Now that you’re fully convinced to stop writing boring, factual, feature-laden website content, it’s time to get a little crazy. Get outside your comfort zone and create content that elicits an emotional response from your customers. Bring on the personality!
Myca A brings 12 years of director-level marketing, sales and communications experience. She has worked with all sizes and types of organizations from GE Capital Corporation and a $100MM non-profit down to a small local promotional products manufacturer. Her experience in publishing, process improvement, change management, leadership, finance, communications and marketing give her a broad background to draw upon when crafting compelling content.