by Jenn Aubert | Featured Contributor
No one is immune from putting out sucky content. We either feel uninspired when we have a deadline or just feel the extraordinary pressure to push out more and more content that sometimes you just plain miss the mark.
Most people, at least the people I know, really want to produce great content that helps, entertains or educates their audience in a meaningful way.
They have wonderfully admirable intentions.
Then there are people who just put out sucky content (you know who they are.)
Here is how not to have content that stinks up the place:
1. It’s all about “me”.
Hey, did I tell you about me. And, did I mention me. Oh by the way, did you look at me.
Weaving your personality and story can provide wonderful content that connects you to your audience but there is a fine line between sharing for the sake of making a point and just droning on and on and on about what you ate, where you went shopping, the people you know (name dropping) and your personal grooming habits. Fine line, people! Walk this line carefully otherwise you turn off more people than you turn on to your message.
2. I’m truly, honestly, really concerned.
There is nothing worse that watching people pretend to be so concerned about their audience’s pain, then watch them in the same breath blatantly hock their services. The new way of marketing is to share and give before asking for a sale. We all know this but some still are not genuine in putting the audience first. They pretend to have your best interest at heart then twirl around and do something that just turns you off.
3. Please. Call me Dr.
You may have three degrees and people really do call you “Dr” but you can still talk like a human. I know it’s hard when you’ve been immersed in your field for years not to use crazy terms or sound uber professional. It’s difficult to break the habit if you’ve been publishing academic papers or writing business proposals. But, people really want to hear from a human –even more, they really want to hear from someone who sounds like their best friend.
4. The sky is falling.
Enough with the Chicken Little scare tactics. Crazy headlines might get people to open your email or click to read more but scaring the bejesus out of people and then conveniently providing them a solution (oh yeah for $2,000) is not content! It’s just fear mongering.
5. F $#@ing enough already
Sprinkling an occasional swear word to make a point is fine but littering your content with f-bombs like a drunken sailor on leave for two nights is just plain distracting. Plus you sound like you’re trying too hard to sound cool, sassy or cutting edge. By the way – you don’t. The English language is gorgeous. Find alternatives.
Creating meaning in the world with the work you’re doing relies heavily on the content that you share. We have all become writers – some of us prolific writers – whether we realize it or not.
Twenty years from now your guest posts and articles will still be circulating in the inter-web for your children and grandchildren to read. Make sure what you share really matters.
Be thoughtful. Be creative. Be real. Be you.
Jenn Aubert is an author and entrepreneur. Her first book Women Entrepreneur Revolution: Ready! Set! Launch! (Balboa Press, 2014) explores the mindset, motivation and behaviors of successful female entrepreneurs and the role models in their lives who have influenced them. She is also the co-founder and CEO of LearnSavvy, an online education marketplace and community for women business owners and the co-owner of the site Showcasing Women. Personally, she adores inspirational quotes (long before it was popular), all things French (yes, that does include wine), Deepak Chopra and a comfy pair of ballet flats. She has recently relocated to Portland, OR with her husband and adorable son and is spending her free time exploring everything this gorgeous new city has to offer.