Why writers need to double up as content strategists

Back in 2016, if someone asked me why I left my job, I gave them a nasty stare and told them that I left my job to become a writer- a poignant, eloquent wordsmith who worshipped words and derived pleasure from articulating thoughts into stories people would love. That’s what I thought I would become.

Even as a child, I often found recluse in things which spurred my creative streaks. I felt bored when I had to play indoor and trade my freedom with board games. I felt utmost happiness when I was out in the open, looking at things and imagining a world beyond ordinary. I experienced the world differently, I looked at things differently, my imagination was like wild animals. It could not be contained within the shackles of ‘typical’.

These reasons and many more were the thoughts which made writing an obvious choice for me. So, when I joined Quovantis, I had this picturesque life of a writer in my mind- me, my laptop and a world of words waiting to be discovered.

However, soon the reality dawned upon me and I realized that writing for an organization is poles apart to writing for yourself.

writers must be good in strategy

Here’s what I figured out-

Writers in an organization ought to double up as strategists. They need to speak (and write) the voice of the organization in such a way that it becomes compelling, informative and engaging.

The reality was a hard one to accept, mainly because it confined me to limited possibilities. But, over a period of time, I have realized that strategy doesn’t kill creativity. Rather, it helps you become better at your craft.

How, you ask?

Strategy is the cure for every remorse that you feel when you don’t write well. It helps you see that your readers seldom come to indulge in what you write. They come to skim and seek the information they need. So you need to write what helps in making the conversation flow. Moreover, if you strategize your content, it helps you develop a profound understanding of the organization’s vision and how you fit into their universe.

If that doesn’t sound like a valid reason to you, I urge you to continue reading.

Consider this example- by common understanding, it’s known that a technology company needs rockstar engineers and great leaders to grow. If they are new to the world of startups, the only way to let people know about their work is- do amazing work, never compromise on the quality of the product, ship fast and get more work done. That’s right, isn’t it?

Yes, kind of!

However, there’s another approach to it- the organization continues to do everything that they are fabulous at. Just this time around, they take help of a writer and talk about things which they value as an organization, their approach to work, the innovative solutions they’ve delivered, the amazing partnerships they’ve made.

The moment an organization takes this information out into the internet world, they have more visibility. People look up to them as a leading organization with capacity and caliber to deliver solutions.

How strategy for writing fits into all of that?

When swimmers compete against each other, they work out on their specific stroke in which they can take a lead. Same with athletes, they work out on their strengths and figure out the lap in which they will swoosh past their fellow racers.

When you create a content strategy, your aim is pretty much the same. You want to beat your competitors and get ahead in the race to grab your reader’s attention. And to do that, you need a plan, a strategy.

You need to know-

  • What content you need to write?
  • Which channels you’ll use to distribute your content?
  • Who will write that content? Who will edit it? Who will make illustrations?
  • Who will manage the publishing calendar?
  • Who will take care of updating the outdated content?
  • Who will interact with the readers and their comments?

And apart from the above things, you need to decide-

  • What will be the voice and tone of your writing? Casual or formal?
  • What topics you want to talk about? Leadership, technology, design, culture? (It’s okay to choose more than one)

All of this, together with your creative writing skills, will help you become a rockstar content strategist.

I understand, it can be a bit overwhelming in the beginning, especially when you just want to write and lose yourself in the creative journey. But, trust me, a strategy is needed for any kind of writing. You need to find your purpose, vision, and direction before you sit down to write anything. You need to ensure that everything that you write is valuable to both the organization and the reader. You need to write in a way that it answers the questions of your readers and motivates them to interact with you or your organization.

I hope I have given you enough reasons to start strategizing your writing. I would be happy to hear your take on this- how do you start writing? Is strategy a thing you despise? Or, love?

Drop your comments below and let’s get started!

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