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14 Tips For Creating Content That Doesn’t Pollute

April 25, 2019

Earth Day made me think of water, which made me think of pollution, which, sad to say, made me think of… content.blank vertical space, 24 pixels highLittle African boy standing by polluted water holding dirty water drop crying tear Filthy water cannot be washed African proverb

Because most content produced today is pollution.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

It’s usually not called that, of course. Too brutal. The polite (buzz)word is “churn.”blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

Meaning: all the lookalike content that’s produced every day, tossed into the stream, and then gets ignored.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

I’m embarrassed to say I’ve produced some posts like that. They’re digital pollution.blank vertical space, 24 pixels high

So if you routinely create content, how can you make sure your content does not pollute?blank vertical space, 24 pixels high

1. Stop routinely creating content. Stop churning it out. Only create content when you have something new to say. Choose quality over quantity.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

2. Don’t run everything together. That’s true even if you insert images and videos into your text. Eyes glaze over quickly without white space.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

3. Resist the temptation to use stock photos just because they’re free. Everyone’s sick of those cookie-cutter people yukking it up around a computer.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

4. Don’t create posts that are infomercials or thinly disguised pitches for your product or service. It kills your credibility.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

5. Figure out new ways to tell your brand story. Don’t be
the bore at the cocktail party telling the one we’ve all heard before.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

6. Make sure you have a clean uncluttered site. No one likes to visit a site that’s polluted with congestion, popups, and poor navigation.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

7. If you partner with an influencer, make sure the person has a sincere interest in your brand. Insincerity breeds pollution– it’s inevitable.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

8. Create for your target audience. People return to sites (both physical and digital) because they connect emotionally. You can’t be all things to all people.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

9. Your #1 priority has to be getting noticed. True even if you buy ads. You won’t get noticed if you create boring useless filler.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

10. Every piece of content reflects on you and your brand. People forgive an occasional lapse, but churning out empty content ruins your reputation.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

11. Figure out a way to be different. Do that before you create content. Otherwise you’ll be lost in the churn, no matter how good your content is.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

12. Take risks— it’s part of being different, standing out. Playing it safe leads to sameness, invisibility, being part of the churn.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

13. Don’t mistake flash for substance. Especially true for video and interactive content. People walk by walls covered with garish graffiti. Eyeballs do, too.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

14. Give people a reason to come back. Every post is a chance to tell someone you’re worth their time. blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

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About Mark: I’m an illustrator specializing in humor, branding, social media, and content marketing. My images are different, like your brand needs to be.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

You can view my portfolio, and connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

Questions? Send me an email.blank vertical space, 40 pixels highRecommendation testimonial for Mark Armstrong Illustration from Doug Busk, VP Communications, Emory U. former Global Group Director Social Media at Coca-Col

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. April 25, 2019 1:00 PM

    This is excellent advice. I’m printing this out and putting it by my computer!!


    • April 26, 2019 3:56 PM

      Wait a minute! Wait a gosh-darn minute!! I’m a long-time fan of yours, and I can tell you right now you dun need no steenking list– your posts are always pure, sparkling funny bone-ticklers that reduce me to pure, sparkling tears that fall down and water the earth and my shirtfront!! So keep up the pure, sparkling, excellent work, my dear Linda!!! 🏆😊


  2. April 27, 2019 2:14 PM

    Your posts never pollute the internet!! Good quality content with exceptional talent is what I find here.


    • April 29, 2019 10:10 AM

      What a kind comment!! ☺️ <= blushing

      I deduce that you are an exceptionally talented painter, and one of my favorite artists!!– thanks, Christine! 😊


  3. RKLikesReeses permalink
    April 30, 2019 5:13 PM

    We’d all be lot happier if everyone who creates and shares “content” (defined broadly or narrowly) would read this list and DO IT!!
    Bravo! 👏👏👏👏👏


    • May 3, 2019 3:00 PM

      Say, I just noticed them thar letters with the leetle dots spell out “brilliant”… doggone! thet be a right ‘culiar coinkydink… 😂😂😂

      Thank you, my D.E.A.R. R.K. for a comment that was truly D.E.L.I.G.H.T.F.U.L. and T.R.É.S. W.U.N.N.A.F.U.L.!!! 👍👍👍🏆😊

      Liked by 1 person


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