Being a consumer, it is easy to pick out what you like and what you don’t like. Your attention is always yours to control. If something doesn’t interest you, it’s out of your life as quick as that.
We love having that control. It helps us keep our minds clear and comfortable when we are trying to relax.
So how then as content creators do we work to establish that importance for an audience to stay and witness what we have to show them?
All good content fits into the three categories. They will not always captivate attention if the reader is simply misinformed or aware and not interested in what you have to say.
But straying away from these three categories brings no wanted attention as there is no value creating outside of the three.
The first is entertainment, one that we all know and love.
Depending on your lifestyle and personality, entertainment can be either tricky or a breeze to come up with.
Stories that we believe have value or are simply entertaining by themselves work as entertainment because the value is directly to enjoy it.
Entertainment may be the most simple to come up with as what we find cool or funny, others might feel the same way. Yet being creative enough to create entertainment that isn’t simply a retell of a story can be the part that makes this club of content exclusive.
We can practice being entertaining, learning how to tell stories or make up our own. But without the drive to get the details as evoking as possible, it can be a failure.
Examples of entertainment content could be stories, predictions of the future, explanations of experiences, etc.
Coming up with entertainment can be fun and most of the time is enjoyable for the reader and the writer. The problem is keeping entertainment consistent is a struggle as people may find themselves out of stories, too busy to come up with entertaining content or forgetting that one story they have been dying to tell.
With this content, user engagement is also very successful as readers will want to hear more even after simply reading a title that gives a tease to what the story involves.
Diving into writing entertainment is exciting but can be quite hard. What needs to be remembered with this category is what entertains you may not entertain someone else.
Usefulness can cover most anything as this category is simply the spread of information, old or new.
This post is an example of a piece of content that falls into usefulness. I am sharing information I have with you.
I may be doing it in an entertaining way, that is completely up to you to decide, but the main goal of this post contains a takeaway to be stuck with the reader making it a useful experience.
How-to’s, lists and analysis are all types of useful content that readers initially go to for the purpose of having a problem or an interest in some information and the content drawing their attention to that.
Usefulness is easy to create as we all know how to explain how something works or describe anything the reader may be curious about.
This may be the easiest as we are constantly doing this all our lives.
We may not be telling stories all the time, maybe a couple times a day. But telling people something or explaining to them an event, object, or anything else would fall into the category of usefulness if it was created as content.
Youtube has surprisingly become one of the largest search engines because the content on Youtube isn’t strictly to entertain as tutorials can take on lots of viewers and subscribers.
Usefulness is vast because this is the information category. The information does not always have to be proven and can be real world explanation or opinions as long as the content consumer finds some use out of the content they are consuming.
News is the category that is the most difficult to tap into as it is simply knowing about important events before others and sharing it yourself.
While this category may be fact driven making it useful and entertaining depending on the story, news can still be separated as the main value in news is that it is new.
This is why journalists compete to have the first story, consumers want to know the full story when they are exposed to the headline.
As a category itself, consumers of news either do have an interest in current-events/politics/whatever a breaking story may be about. But those that do not care about news might not look into knowing the events that have taken place across the globe.
News is competitive and mostly about exposure as hearing about an event and telling it to others can only be worded so exact.
However, news has it’s downfall when it comes to accuracy.
Competition for being the first to tell the story also delivers the problem of what if this isn’t true and having little sources to go off of.
There’s a reason fake news is a recent term to come into popularity as news tends to source itself being that no one else may have been at the scene of a crime.
News is content driven but thrives off of being a content middle man rapidly losing value as the newest content sits before being reported.
Be wary of involving yourself in news as making content about something too late generates no value and reporting too early leaves the exposure of possibly being inaccurate.
Whether you are trying to find the right category to reach consumers or figuring out which category you are already a part of, consider that these three are branches over many.
Hybrids of the categories are also possible and have been done creating terms like infotainment when trying to combine entertainment and information.
Be that as it may, a piece of content that does not fall into these may not hold the value you see in it. Something may be easy to write about, but unless it provides some sort of value to bring to consumers, there may be no point in it’s creation.