[MUSIC] Hey there, welcome back, this is Sonia Simone. And today, I want to explore two essential elements of irresistible content. This session is very heavenly borrowed from a post Brian Clark wrote from Copyblogger under the same title. We've ask our audience from the past, what's your biggest challenge when creating compelling online content? And rather than treating it as a poll or a survey that have to find specific answers, we wanted pure unfiltered responses, and the number one answer was some version of keeping it original and interesting. So that's what we're going to explore today, the two keys necessary to create irresistible content. So the two elements that really lead to reader engagement, fantastic social media sharing, and that gotta have it now impulse are meaning and fascination. So let's unpack each of those a little bit. Starting with meaning, this is the informational aspect of your content that your regular readers, listeners or viewers look to you for. This is also a topic that matters to the perspective audience you're trying to reach through social media sharing. Another way to think of the important aspect of meaning is relevance. Content needs to be highly relevant to exist in your prospective audience. But a copy blogger would prefer the word meaning because it implies an extra level of value that makes people really treasure you. And the second element that's important is fascination. The fascinating eliminator content is where the creativity comes in. That's the fun, shocking or entertaining aspect of your content that makes people pay attention and share it with your friends and colleagues. So this might come from using an analogy a metaphor, to make an associated connection between something that's cool and an important topic that might otherwise be kind of boring. Not only does this attract and hold attention, but it also helps with comprehension and retention for your audience. Which in turn increases your authority with them because they actually learned something. So let me give you a few examples from the Copyblogger Blog and then we'll pick out the meaning and fascination elements of each one. The first one was a post that Brian Clark wrote called, Five Things Depeche Mode Can Teach You About Effective Online Marketing. So with this article, the meaning is expressed by promising to share information about effective online marketing. And the fascination element is that pop culture reference to the 80s group, Depeche Mode, which is going to intrigue fans of the band and at least, if nothing else, prompt some curiosity from people wondering how the hell Bryan's going to make this analogy work. So using another example, how I became a better writer thanks to distracted, hung over college kids. So instead of going with a pop culture reference on this one, this article took a different, but still kind of improbable, intriguing source of fascination to deliver the meaning that readers of Copyblogger are looking for, which is how to write better. And the third one, five things a bad dog can teach you about writing good copy. So the bad dog is the fascinating element and writing good copy is the meaning element. So we have noticed that a lot of people, especially people on professional services or Industries that are a little bit more conservative, like law or medicine, are afraid to go out on a limb and throw in the fascination element, they're just not comfortable with it. And we would really argue that these are the people who have the most to gain from breaking out from what's conventional and stirring the pot a little bit. So pop-culture is an easy place to work for fascination elements. Depending on your topic and your audience in some audiences is a little over done in fact a copy blogger we don't use as many pop-culture references anymore, because our audience just wants to see something new from us. But you could also get a lot of mileage out of industry inside jokes. That's a great one, things that are hanging around in your industry on Facebook or Twitter right now. And references that are totally obscured to outsiders. because remember, you don't care what anyone thinks other than your target audience. And one thing to keep in mind is that from post to post, it is possible that you will bond much more strongly with a small segment of the people you talked to. So one article might speak strongly to some and another article might speak strongly to another and don't let that worry you. That is okay and normal, and really shows that you're doing a good job of really making a very focused connection with a few selected individuals. So the point is to bond strongly with someone rather than boring everyone. And the final point on this, if you have to explain your terribly clever reference, it's probably too obscure. Clarity matters more, no matter how cool the author thinks it might be. Now, you can also intrigue people with an overwhelming amount of relevant meaning, so that the topic is so meaningful that that becomes fascinating. And this is where we get into the list post, the how to articles that tend to go viral just because they're valuable. So they're not using a hook or angle for the fascination, they're just using their sheer usefulness, and the key to this kind of engaging content is really, specificity. The more specific the value you promise and provide, the more fascinating people are going to find it. And specificity is, in and of itself, a fascination element. So some examples that we have published, 109 Ways to Make Your Business Irresistible to the Media, The Simple Five Step Formula for Effective Online Content, The Four Words That Will Get Your Email Open. So all of those did incredibly well because the promise made was so specific and there was a promise made of value that our audience cared about. And so, those became fascinating in and of themselves. Now, you might of figured out this is also how you write really great headlines. So in each of the examples that we've given, you can spot the intersection and meaning and fascination from the headline alone. And that's why meaning and fascination is actually one of our secrets to engaging content and to create headlines because without delivering the promise in the headline, without letting people know of the awesome value they're going to get by reading, they'll never click through and they'll never find your content in the first place. And they also will not share it on social media. So you want to reference the Headlines 101 e-book that comes with this lesson, but remember that the title of your article or the title of your content is really a compelling promise of what that content offers. And that's why we recommend that you write the headline first. When you come up with an intersection of meaning and fascination, and then boil that down to a working title, and then deliver on the promise by crafting the content. And it does sometimes happen that when you're creating the content, you'll uncover some angles, or some hooks, or some intriguing or fascinating element, and you might go back and rework the headline. But that's a way to make sure that your content is living up to a significant promise. So if you find you can't deliver on the promise, and a Brand's example would be, What Mark Zuckerberg Can Teach You About Empathy, you just wouldn't be able to write that article, you wouldn't be able to find the material. Then you gotta scrap the idea and find another one. Don't strain to make a bad analogy work, look for another pairing of meaning and fascination. because once you understand what you're looking for, you will truly find them everywhere. So of course, there are all kinds of tactics, tips, and tricks for making your content more interesting and making it more fascinating. The important thing is to make sure that everything you create, whether it's audio, text, video, slide share, what have you has both of those elements. It has meaning to the audience, it delivers something they care about, typically in the form of solving a problem they care about. But it gives them some meaning, some relevance. And then, it does it in a fascinating way. So it creates curiosity, interest. Could be humor, could be great story telling. It's interesting, it's written an interesting way, it uses an interesting writer's voice. Meaning and fascination are really kind of a one, two punch that make content work. It makes valuable to your audience, it persuades the audience of your authority or the authority of your organization. It gets social shares, it gets links. Really, meaning and fascination are just that one two punch that are going to deliver the value that you need for content. So that's it for today, quick lesson but an important one in all the content you create. And thank you so much for your time and attention. This is Sonia Simone.