When I saw the Fast Company Create, headline, 4 COMPLETELY SCIENTIFIC WAYS TO KNOW IF YOUR CONTENT IS COMPELLING, my first thought was, “I used to know how to create compelling content.” I’ve only been in sales, and out of full-time political writing for three weeks, but I already feel like has-been city.
Now, I want to make a distinction. My political writing may or may not have been good. There are solid arguments either way. But, by God, it was compelling. Comments on my posts would appear days after I put them up on Facebook. Twitter wars over what I wrote would rage for days as well. People devoted entire Facebook pages to reacting to what I’d written. And I was memed. More than once.
The Fast Co article describes how compelling content evokes a powerful emotional response. My stances on already-fraught issues are already evocative, even when I don’t realize it. And when I do find myself agreeing with the mainstream, my immediate thought is, “How can we progress?” As a future-oriented person, I want the future to be better than the now. And I know that doing the same things we’re doing now won’t get us there. I want to innovate everything, and that often involves sacrificing some sacred cows.
But how do you do that in sales and marketing, my new field?
I learned what headlines drove clicks when I worked at Reason. “If it bleeds, it leads” holds true. And if it’s bleeding, you’d better get that across in the headline. But what’s bleeding in sales and marketing? How do you get people as riled up about sales as they are about death and taxes?
There’s probably no way. No one’s going to get as weird about internet marketing as they are about the concept of privilege. And, really, thank God for that.
But here are some things I want to try:
Making the value clear
What someone’s going to get out of the post should be clear in the headline.
Make it personal
Reading me, people should know a little about who I am, where I’m coming from, and what I’m trying to accomplish.
Make it matter
Sales and marketing make all other innovation possible. We’re creating the conditions necessary to move humanity forward toward prosperity and away from want. This stuff matters, and we have every reason to take it seriously.
Photo by Kelley Bozarth