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Picking a Content Format for Your Business

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When you’re creating content to reach your target customers, there are three main content types you can choose from:

  • Written content (like blogging)
  • Audio content (podcasting)
  • Video content

For most of us, we’re more comfortable in one format than the others. But that doesn’t necessarily mean our messages will reach our audience well in that format.

So, how do you decide what format to use, and how to make the most of that content that you’re creating? Just answer these four questions.

Four Questions to Decide What Kind of Content to Create

Question 1: How will your audience use your content? There are a few things that just really need to be presented in a specific format. If you’re creating a recipe, then you’ll need to provide written content (like the ingredient list). If you teach yoga online, then you’ll need at least audio to provide prompts between postures, but video will work even better. As a life coach, you can write, podcast, or create videos to connect with your target audience.

You need to think about when and how they’re going to consume your creations. If you need to provide any auxiliary information, like worksheets or downloads, then you may need to create landing pages or blog posts to support your video or audio content, even if you’re not transcribing the audio or video into a traditional blog post.

Question 2: What type of content do you enjoy creating? Let’s be honest – if you hate creating one kind of content, then you’re going to procrastinate when the time comes to create something new. That doesn’t mean all hope is lost – particularly if you dislike writing in favor of podcasting or video creation. Transcription services (like Temi or Rev) can take your audio content and give you back written content. Then all you have to do is touch up the content to make it reader-friendly. (Of course, you may provide your content as a transcript of a video or podcast – then you won’t need to edit much at all!)

Question 3: What constraints do you have about content creation? Maybe you don’t have a good place to record video because of roommates or kids. Or maybe you have a repetitive stress injury that makes typing a challenge. Whatever it is, it’s best to recognize that you may have challenges that make creating one type of content harder than others.

Question 4: What tech do you have available? What skills do you already have? Writing a blog requires the lowest tech and skill requirements to create. Services like Anchor.fm and YouTube Live make it easier to create audio or video content directly from your phone. On the other hand, to create polished podcasts and video content, you may want some advanced tools to capture and edit your content, including cameras, microphones, and editing software.

Blended Content Formats

Of course, nothing says that you have to choose just one format for your content. For example, Rachel Brathen – more commonly known as Yoga Girl – blogs regularly, releases weekly podcasts and recently started a YouTube channel for her brand. While sometimes she’ll talk about the same subject on a couple of different platforms, you’ll find original content in all three formats.

Conversely, Tom and Ariana who run Lifestyle Builders record their podcasts with video and then transcribe the same content into blog posts as well. This allows people to access the same content in whatever format works best for them – video, audio, or written.

Finally, Tonya Dalton, host of the podcast “Productivity Paradox” has a third technique. Her blog, podcast, and video are all on the same subject – but have slightly different messages. For example, her blog post highlights the actionable bullet points that she shares in her conversational podcast. The video goes even more in-depth, particularly when Tonya is discussing systems and processes.

So, what type of content are you going to create? Join in the discussion in the comments below or over on the Facebook page!

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How to pick a content format for your business

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