How to Create Memorable Content
“If you would not be forgotten, as soon as you are dead and rotten, either write things worth reading, or do things worth writing.” — Poor Richard's Almanack, Benjamin Franklin
Thanks for the fun quote, Ben.
His advice doesn't just apply to living life intentionally, but to something on a smaller scale: creating memorable content. How do you create memorable content that sticks around?
How to create memorable content
Tell a story.
Simple, right? But if you don't have regular practice writing stories as a writer might, it's easy to get stuck. I feel you.
To start, figure out what makes your brand unique. Who are you? What do you do and why? How was your brand founded? Write a story answering one of those questions as if you were telling it to someone out loud. This method will help you get your thoughts down and write in a natural tone of voice. You can always go back and spruce up your copy later.
Here's an example from the About Us page of one of my favorite local bookstores in Denver, BookBar:
wine + books
The idea of combining a book store and wine bar came to owner, Nicole Sullivan, like a bolt of lightning one day while reading a book and drinking a glass of wine. Who among us does not like wine and books and books with wine? About a dozen years later, after meandering through a few different careers, culinary school, marriage and motherhood, BookBar began to take shape.
a gathering space
Sullivan became interested in not only the concept of combining books and wine but also creating a community gathering space where it is not just accepted but encouraged, to lounge and read or meet and discuss; to take time to slow down and share food, drink, the written word (in whatever form) – to savor the good things in life. And to have a really awesome place to hang out when the kids are driving her nuts.
Great, right? We can picture ourselves in Nicole's shoes, getting the idea for BookBar and seeing our vision for it come to life.
For storytelling style inspiration, look at your favorite brands. Are you drawn to them because of the stories they tell? How do they tell them and capture your attention? (I'll talk about one of my favorites in the next section.)
Stick to your core message.
If you know me personally or you've seen my Instagram Stories, you know that I adore the National Park Service's social media accounts. Every post they publish — whether it's a photo of a critter, a scenic view, or a historical landmark — they do with a unique blend of wholesome humor and education in the caption.
An example: To celebrate Fat Bear Week, where people vote on the fattest bear in Katmai National Park, the NPS posted a photo of a bear with the following caption.
Honky chonk Beardonkadonk
Fat Bear Week is off and running. Well, maybe not running. Despite the extra weight they are carrying, these burly beasts can still move faster than most humans. (Slower friends should still be wary of hiking invites.) Why do bears want to pack on the pounds? Bears eat as much as they can to build up crucial fat reserves in advance of winter hibernation. Stocking up on salmon will help them through the winter and be able to live to compete another year.
Fat bears = healthy bears.
The #FatBearWeek competition is brought to you through the partnership of Katmai National Park and Preserve, explore.org and the Katmai Conservancy. Visit explore.org/fat-bear-week daily through Championship Tuesday, October 6th to vote for your favorites.
Brilliant. They always stick to their core message in each post. And ultimately, every post reflects their brand's message: to have fun exploring and learning about America's National Parks. Clearly they know how to create memorable content.
Determine your core message if you're unsure how to start writing a piece of content. Let that guide the rest.
Break your patterns.
This tip seems counter intuitive to the last one, doesn't it? But sticking to your core message and changing up your style of writing are two different things. You can still stay true to your message while playing around with different ways of expressing it.
Plus, routines are comfortable and predictable. Anything that disrupts a routine stands out and gets noticed. We love our routines, so much so that when a pattern is broken, we remember it.
How can you do this with your content? You might start small by changing the format of your content first. Instead of a longform blog post like this one, try a bullet list. Or a Q&A. Or a how-to guide. Figure out another way to tell your story and write it from that angle.
With these tips, you can create memorable content that'll stick with your audience. And if you'd rather have someone else do it...shoot me a message. I'd be happy to help.