Desk workCreating great quality content is really important for your business, and comes with a whole host of benefits and positive impacts for your company and its image. But unfortunately, writing pieces of a high quality isn’t always quite enough to guarantee that your content actually reaches the audience you were hoping for.

For a lot of people, there is a great deal of frustration and confusion as to just why the content that they have put hard work into creating isn’t getting read.

There’s no simple equation to ensure that your content gets out there to all the right people, and no quick way to figure out exactly what’s holding it back. But if you are struggling to get your content read, it may well be for one of these reasons:

1) You’re not picking the best possible subject matter

You should try to write about things that have already generated interest online – without simply replicating existing material, of course. Try finding posts that are popular in their own right and relevant to the field you’re working in. You can use things like Open Site Explorer to check up on how good existing posts have been at generating quality links, and then pick up on some of the ideas these discuss.

2) You’re repeating things people can find elsewhere

If you want to ensure your content is read by as many people as possible, you have to have something new and different to offer. Otherwise, they may as well click on another post that will provide them with exactly the same information. Do your research beforehand, find out what’s already out there, and make it better! This is a key part of Brian Dean’s skyscraper technique. Sometimes you can even do this by simply updating what’s online to make sure the figures, ideas, information and so on, are the most recent and most accurate out there. Other times, expanding on what’s out there can be the key to pushing your content above and beyond previous articles. Create a piece that’s longer, more detailed, explores things in more depth than anything that you can find online. If you’re compiling a list of things, simply putting more items on the list can do the trick! Most people would rather read about ’15 Ways to Lose Weight’ than just 3, for example.

3) Your website is poorly designed

Aesthetics are important – often even more important than the content itself. Make sure you take the time, and possibly money, to make your material look as attractive and professional as possible. People will be much more likely to want to read the piece, and it adds a sense of credibility to whatever you’re writing about. Websites that look cheap and unprofessional are often exited straight away, and will generally generate far fewer links than more professionally put together pages.

4) You’re neglecting your headlines

Picking a good headline is an absolutely crucial part of gaining readers for your content. The headline is the moment at which people decide whether to click onto your site or not, so spend time composing it! There are loads of different factors that can influence whether or not a headline will be effective, and it can depend a lot on what your content is, and who you’re targeting. A basic point applicable to almost every post is making your headline informative – tell people what they are going to learn or gain from reading your article. For a lot of areas, headlines that are based around the ideas of ‘How to…’, and lists, prove very popular. Statistics are generally very powerful, so if you have data regarding your content, try to include it in the headline. You should also try to create a sense of urgency – imply that your readers have a limited time to act on whatever your article tells them – and an emotional response of some sort. Depending on what you’re writing about, different things will make your headline more or less effective, and these are only a few of the many factors that can influence a headline’s impact, so you might like to do a little research and dedicate a bit more time to coming up with a powerful headline.

5) You’re not getting word out to the right people

You might think the more people you reach out to, the more links you’re likely to get, but this can be a waste of time and simply create bad relationships within the industry. It’s a much better use of your time and efforts to figure out which people are likely to want to link to your website, and whose links you’d stand to gain the most from. Try to find people who have already linked to similar (and hopefully inferior) content, and let them know that you’ve created a post they might be interested in.

6) You haven’t thought much about your social media presence

In this day and age, social media is often the single best way to get your content out there and being read and discussed. Spend time building up your social media accounts, and participate in social media activities. That means tweeting regularly, with interesting and entertaining posts, which will gain you followers and generate interest about you and your brand. Promote other useful sites, as well as your own. And don’t be afraid to ask for help! Many people think asking followers to spread the word about their website is annoying and ineffective, but in fact, tweets that include ‘please RT’ are four times more likely to be retweeted! Let people know that you have something to say, and that you want people to hear it.