Personality Rules: The Key To Great Content

Whenever I do a Book Rapper issue, I always check to see who the author of the book is. For me, this rounds out the story behind the book.

As part of this I like to find a photo of the author. And, this can be really interesting. Usually, I just type in the authors name and do a Google Image search. Typically you get the standard posed shots and often show a forced smile. The ones I look out for are the ones where the author(s) is caught a little off guard. This is how I like to take my happy snaps of family and friends too! I think it shows their personality far better than some staged portrait.

Case Study

When I was researching Content Rules by Ann Handley and C. C. Chapman two photos in particular stood out. First of all I found this one…

Ann Handley and CC Chapman

Image found here.

It’s a bit over the top cheeky. When I look at this I get the impression that something has just happened and they’re trying to keep a straight face.

And, then I found this photo…

Ann Handley and CC Chapman

Image found here. Photo and copyright by Derek Wilmot

And, I think this explains everything! I think this photo was taken first. They cracked up laughing about something and the photographer snapped this one. And, less than a minute later whilst the laughter was still in the air, he snapped the first photo.

My point is… whilst their book is called Content Rules, perhaps…

The key rule for generating your marketing content: Personality Rules

Whilst, it’s nice to have some good content, the web is full of it. And, if you look at the numbers behind any Google search – I’m yet to see a search term that doesn’t bring back millions of listings – the lesson is you’re going to have to do something better than boring old drivel to get noticed.

And this where you come in… your personality. This is your brand, this is your appeal and it is the one thing that will make you stand out from the other millions. Now, I’m not talking about being the loudest or the baddest (is that a word?), I’m talking about being real and not taking yourself too seriously. We can all do that, right?

Your Profile

Ann Handley was voted the most influential social media woman in the world in 2008. And, yet her profile on her web page says this…

“I live near Boston, in a slightly creaky, comfortable house with 2 kids, 4 dogs, good coffee in the kitchen, decent wine in the cellar, a stack of New Yorkers by the bed, and an occasional field mouse in the laundry room.”

Seven Suggestions

And, this leads me to seven suggestions for adding your personality to your Content Marketing:

  1. Write an interesting bio
  2. Have some fun with your FAQ
  3. Show your human side and acknowledge your mistakes
  4. Speak your writing – this may mean chatting to a recorder and then transcribing the results (that’s what I’m doing right now).
  5. Show some emotion – including letting us know when you’re upset!
  6. Express your quirks – do you have “a stack of New Yorkers by the bed”?
  7. Do a video or an audio recording so we can experience the ‘live’ you

What other ways can you add personality to your content marketing?


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