Through the Eyes of a Writer

Want to create more interesting content?
Take a second look at how your stories are written.

Once again, the leading priority for content marketers is creating more engaging content, according to the latest “B2B Content Marketing Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends” report by Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs.

Ann Handley, chief content officer of MarketingProfs, contends that this prevalence of B2B marketers feeling like they are missing the mark on engagement is due to an undervaluation of writing in the content creation process.

While 72 percent of B2B marketers said they want to focus on creating engaging content, just 41 percent are looking to improve their storytelling technique and only 19 percent put a priority on becoming stronger writers. Handley argues that this lack of focus on writing skills is why marketers struggle with creating engaging content. This is a trend that the survey has found for the last six years.

“The best content marketers need strong writing skills,” says Handley, “because the foundation of content marketing is writing (no matter what form that content ultimately takes).”

We agree. After all, even a piece that’s almost purely design, like an illustration, should be carefully “written” out (even if it’s just in the illustrator’s head) to make sure it is telling an interesting story prior to beginning the work.

This is not to say that all content creators need to have a traditional writing background and expertise in the mechanics of grammar. We’re talking more here about a skill for developing an engaging narrative and a logical structure and incorporating elements that bring the story to life. It also helps to come back to the work to see the piece through the eyes of the audience and prune out unnecessary elements so the story can bloom.

So marketers and creators looking to make their content more engaging should look for this framework of writing and storytelling underlying the work that they are reviewing or developing. It’s a critical element to producing work that audiences can’t ignore.