At Knotch, we’re fortunate to interact with some of the world’s most talented content marketers. We connect with them as clients, as panelists, as attendees at events we attend and host, and even as insiders for their view of the industry. One of the questions they ask us most frequently is the simple, “What makes good content?” To tackle this from a unique angle, you can draw surprising similarities from an industry where the differences between what is and isn’t valuable aren’t immediately discernible. And interestingly, that’s the diamond industry.
Good content as we know it has a lot in common with these precious gems. For those who have bought or received a wedding ring, the “Four C’s” (Carat, Clarity, Cut and Color) are incredibly important when choosing this monumental piece of jewelry. Relating the four C’s to content success can reveal the most vital components of genuinely great content. Like a diamond, good content can require a significant investment, but the differences between high and low quality can often be tough to recognize at first glance.
Here are four ways you can evaluate your content to see if you’re producing a real gem for your business.
Carat: As content marketers wade through the types of content they wish to create, it’s essential to understand the weight of the content. Is it a subject your brand has the authority to comment on? If not, is it a topic you’d like to grow authority in but need to build the ethos supporting it? Understanding the weight of the subject matter, combined with the current perception surrounding your brand, is a great first take on whether or not your content will work.
Clarity: Are you transparent with the motivations behind your content? Your readers will quickly see through your material if you aren’t forthright in your agenda. When proofreading, it’s critical to go beyond the clarity of your grammar and word choice and evaluate your underlying motivations.
Cut: Does your content have a distinct POV? Often to meet SEO goals, content can be keyword-rich, but POV poor. Having a different perspective gives the reader a chance to react (either positively or negatively) to your content and also come back for more. Having consumers view your firm as a key resource for insights will, over time, boost your brand reputation to something more than just an informational hub devoid of opinion.
Color: Out of all the elements of diamond shopping, the diamond color grades, and the small differences between them, can impact your bank account the hardest. These subtleties are even more impactful as they relate to content. While colorless diamonds are the most valuable, the same doesn’t apply to content. Inserting personality can differentiate a good story from a great one. Especially for thought leadership with named authors (vs. a general post from the company), incorporating the personality of the author into the piece not only builds the author’s reputation but also humanizes the brand.
So when you evaluate your content, is your material a diamond? Or does it need more polish?