Poppy and I have just got back from the vets, where she is trying a new treatment to help with her arthritis. I read a lot of different types of blog content about canine arthritis, joint issues in dogs, and all the different treatments that can help with the pain and quality of life.
Now obviously, not every blog is full of useful or accurate information; the thing with blogs is that anyone can write one! I really enjoy consuming blogs which are information-based and educational… and usually about dogs or content marketing, of course!
How do you know if the information in a blog is trustworthy?
In order to fact check and qualify whether the information in a blog post is content I can trust, I do a few things.
1. Check out the writer’s credentials and experience.
2. Check out the writer’s other content; if they’ve written about something I have a good understanding of, I will see if we have the same ethos and values.
3. Read other blogs on the subject to gather different opinions and evidence on a topic.
Rinse and repeat!
Why am I telling you this?
Well, we will dive into the different types of content that you can create for your pet business, but let’s go back to the basics of how you can make your blog successful.
If you look at the three points above for how I check the blog content’s authority, try to apply it to your own content where you can.
Are you an expert on the topic you are writing about? Or can you find data that supports your opinion?
What gives someone expert status? It could be qualifications, but it could also be experience. In my example of Poppy’s arthritis treatment, I looked at blogs and content from different experts. I read some content written by vets, information on the pharmaceutical company’s website, canine arthritis specific sites, and forum comments from real people who have tried the drug.
You don’t have to be professionally qualified to be able to offer useful insight into an area that you have personal experience of.
Think about how you can qualify your personal experience, and try to include that either in the blog itself or in additional content that you produce.
I feel confident writing about canine arthritis, for example, because I have personal experience with my own dog and also because I have consumed a helluva lot of information on the subject. So while I may not be professionally qualified, I can reference evidence and data to support my thoughts, and I can share my own experiences alongside.
Sometimes when people are writing for their pet businesses, they can feel underqualified to explore subjects that may interest their audience. But don’t undersell yourself. Consider your personal experiences, consume content from reputable sources, or ask an expert to feature in your blog if you feel you need to add a little extra clout to support your authority on the topic.
So with how to establish trust and authority on your blog content covered, let’s look at the different types of blog content that you can produce for your pet business.
Not all blog content is loaded with information and facts. Some pieces are more entertainment-based, storytelling focused, or opinion pieces.
There are likely to be different kinds of people within your target audience motivated by different types of blog content. Some will enjoy reading long fact-based articles, others will enjoy funny videos, and some will like food for thought sparked by an opinion piece.
1. Long-form information blog content
Buzzsumo found that blogs of over 3000 words got the most shares. Now you can’t just go writing mega long blog posts and spreading your content too thin just to meet a word count goal. But if a topic warrants a lot of exploration and data, then don’t be afraid of writing long blog posts when appropriate.
Google has also been shown to prefer content that has substantial information. Remember, Google is always looking to give the user the most useful answer to their search, so if your post includes a lot of valuable information, then it’s a big plus.
Infographics are incredibly shareable, and there is data that suggests turning long-form, data-heavy posts into infographics to be a very successful content marketing strategy.
Venngage says that infographics are 30 times more likely to be read than a full article.
I’m a big fan of repurposing your content to get the maximum out of your work. For example, you could take a blog post that has done well, summarise the key points in an infographic, and you can not only increase your reach but use the infographic to promote visits to your original blog post. Venngage offers free templates for you to whip up your own snazzy infographics.
3. Entertaining blog content
While information-heavy blogs appeal to some people, others may prefer to spend their online time enjoying something a little more lighthearted. This could be videos of your dog doing something funny, a blog exploring funny facts about dogs, or a real-life story which leads nicely on to…..
Meaningful Brands undertook a study that showed that a shocking 94% of UK brands had no meaning in their consumer’s lives. Their customers felt that the content they created was pretty much clutter. It held no value for them.
Storytelling is an excellent way of connecting and creating more relatable content. That’s content that is relevant and evokes a response from your reader, such as identifying with your story, feeling emotion in reaction to it, or inspiring your reader.
Case studies are storytelling pieces. You can use them to help your audience understand your client journey and the impact of your product or services on those who use them. This is a double whammy as it simultaneously provides social proof, a firm recommendation from someone that what you do rocks!
5. Opinion pieces
Sharing your opinion can sometimes give you the heebie-jeebies. What if you upset somebody or if your audience disagrees? Now, I am not suggesting that you should go out and start creating controversial content to gain attention. You don’t want to turn your devoted fans off.
However, sharing your opinion lets your audience get to know you better, which comes back to the affinity building and understanding that we want to achieve with our content.
Brash, bossy opinion posts are a big no-no in most cases, but not all opinions have to be contentious or rage-inducing! Instead, you can use your opinion pieces to open a dialogue, invite alternative views to your own, and welcome a friendly discussion. You can show your audience that you value their input and thoughts on a topic and that you’d benefit from hearing their opinions.
None of us have ever finished learning, and if done gently and in a considered manner, your opinion pieces could give you a lot of insight into your target audience that you’d otherwise not gain.
6. Video Content
People want to know the person behind the business. When they see your face, the whites of your eyes, as they say, they really start to hear your voice and feel an affinity with you.
You can create video content that is any of the above; entertaining, informative, case studies, stories, behind the scenes. A lot of pet businesses do this on their socials. Whether that’s behind the scenes insta stories, lives discussing their opinions or sharing tips, or video testimonials.
Consider pre-recording these or downloading them and hosting them on your own YouTube channel, and you have content with more longevity. You can embed these videos on your website or within your blogs. Blogs don’t just have to be written pieces.
Going back to that stat from Meaningful Brands, none of us want to be producing content that feels clutter full.
Your content strategy will ideally be to post with purpose; that purpose could be for engagement, entertainment, or to inform and inspire. Whatever you are trying to achieve with your content, your audience is your main consideration with each and every post. You want to bring them value in some shape or form.
If you’d like more inspiration and little tips to help you with your content marketing, then please download my five tips for creating blog content your clients want to read here. And let me know how you get on. I’d love to hear from you.