Content marketers understand that the root of their business revolves around creating unique, well-written and engaging content.
But another important element of content marketing is creating authoritative content that includes the who, what, when, where, and why of your messaging. That’s why an understanding of journalism best practices, and potentially employing journalists, can help you take your content to the next level.
Journalism professionals understand that engaging content that is factual, timely, and researched gives your clients the best possible content that distills complex ideas into easy reads.
With that in mind, here are 5 journalism skills that content marketers can use to make great content.
1.) Focus on the “5 W’s”
In the journalism field, the “5 W’s” are king.
In any successful piece of journalism, reporters are required to include the who, what, when, where, and why of any newsworthy event. This principle gives articles all of the fundamental elements needed to tell a story.
For content marketers trying to connect to potential customers, it’s important to form a similar checklist for your content to explain to readers what message you are conveying and why.
Going back to basics can help marketers create consistent content that connects with readers.
2.) Aim for factual content
Journalists know that factual accuracy informs their credibility with readers.
At the lowest level, having your facts straight allows journalists to form a relationship with their readers without constantly establishing the accuracy of your work.
Pursuing that level of accuracy is also important for content marketers, who are trying to establish the authority of their content in readers’ eyes. Content marketers can use the base level pursuit of factual accuracy as a benchmark for their content and create a strong relationship with potential customers.
Once readers have established that you are telling them the truth, they will keep coming back to your content.
3.) Understand your audience
Good journalists understand that a solid relationship with your readers and sources helps them do their jobs.
Journalism is a relationship-building industry. Successful reporters know that they need to speak the same language as their readers to convey the right message and provide information in the most accessible way.
This skill transfers directly into content marketing, where the best content speaks to whatever audience you are looking to engage.
4.) Take a deadline-oriented approach
Daily journalism, particularly in print, relies on hard deadlines. For newspapers, the integrity of a deadline helps reporters, editors, and the copy desk gets content onto the page and the paper out of the press.
For content marketing, the maintenance of an editorial calendar and hard deadlines can help businesses stay up to date with their content and keep the entire operation running smoothly.
5.) Learn to work collaboratively
The reporter-editor combo is a crucial relationship in journalism to ensure the best articles are produced each day. Journalists understand that they are not alone in the reporting process and lean on editors to keep their content on message.
Content marketers can find similar success taking a collaborative approach on their work. Keeping multiple eyes on the end product can help produce high-level content that helps your business.