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Journalism Skills That Help You Provide Engaging Content

August 9, 2019

by Bill Acholla


Journalism skills can help you improve your content marketing skills. Learn the skills that can help you provide clients engaging and valuable content.

I started my career in journalism seven years ago. In that time, I have learned that journalism skills can help you improve your content marketing skills.

In the first phase of my career, I only worked as a full-time journalist. I had no clue that my journalism career could help me develop an array of other skills.

Two years ago, I opened my own content marketing agency. My journalism skills have helped me manage and operate my agency successfully.

I have even been able to maintain a freelance journalism career, providing an outlet for my passion and an opportunity to improve my skills.

Speaking of content marketing, the main goal of every content marketing campaign is to provide readers with engaging and valuable content. There is no better sales tool than great content.

You need to continuously remind your prospects that you exist. You need to do whatever it takes to make your presence visible to your current customers.

When it comes to content creation, boosting your SEO efforts is a must. This will help make your content more visible.

To help you understand, let me give you the basic skeletal structure of a content marketing campaign.

  • Mediums: Social media, blogs or video
  • Granular Details: Voice used in social media posts and blogs
  • Colors: Will attract more interest in your content.

When it comes to content creation, many digital marketers are seeking a specific type of content creators – bloggers, copywriters, or producers.

Marketers should also consider hiring journalists. Experienced and trained journalists can write excellent content for any content marketing campaign.

Journalists tend to have exceptional writing skills. They not only possess excellent writing skills but also know how to keep everything organized.

Companies should take advantage of the excellent writing skills that journalists have to offer.

With this in mind, let’s examine five of the best journalism skills that can provide engaging content.

1. Creating Content With “Five Ws and an H”

There is no doubt that “Five Ws and an H” is the most important thing to learn for every journalist.

Here’s what it stands for: Who, What, Where, When, Why and How.

This is a simple formula every journalist uses. Using this formula, journalists are able to collect information during research.

By following the formula, you can collect all the information needed to answer the questions and solve the problem. This is an important part of any content marketing campaign.

For example, when you write an online post or a blog, provide all the relevant information to your readers. You can use the “Five Ws and an H” formula for this, too.

If you are going to be writing, make sure you learn to use the “5 Ws and an H” formula. Now, you can create powerful, highly ranking SEO content.

2. Emphasize Clarity

Journalists must emphasize clarity. How do you take a challenged piece and make it interesting? The answer is to make your writing clear.

Most journalists’ main aim is to expose their content to as many people as possible. Clarity will help you do this.

To achieve clarity, answer all six questions clearly. Avoid any sort of jargon so that the reader finds it easy to read the content.

Here’s a simple example: You are writing content for a medical journal and dermatologists are your targeted readers. You should plan to use words such as microdermabrasion.

However, if you are writing for a business, your writing must be simple so that readers can understand.

Since journalists are trained in clarity, they can bring this skill to the content marketing field.

3. Understand Your Audience

Without a target audience, your content has no value.

Before you begin writing or searching for valuable keywords, you must determine who your targeted audience is: Who are you writing for?

Top journalists consider finding a target audience a serious mission. An experienced journalist will always write for their audience.

In fact, growing your audience will improve your organic search traffic.

Journalists use several tools to reach their target audience.

Sites such as Quora and Reddit help give journalists ideas.

quora screenshot

These sites also show journalists what their audience is talking about.

Always remember that your content can only be successful when you have a targeted audience for it. Without an audience, your content is worthless. Discover your audience’s interest and cater your content to it.

4. Deadlines Are Important

Every journalist understands the importance of meeting deadlines.

Here is an example of a deadline I was given:

journalist deadline example

Deadlines are hard, and they are integral to succeeding as a journalist. You have to report, write, and meet deadlines simultaneously.

Fortunately, the capacity to meet deadlines is another skill that makes a journalist the perfect person to complete high amounts of quality work quickly.

5. Learn to Adjust to Editors’ Processes

Any serious content business will have a systematic content creation system in place. Whether it be blogs or infographics, everything is counted.

For example, one editor may gracefully pass an assignment to another and make sure all stakeholders are aware of the change.

Editor passes on another assignment to another email

Now, Bill, Deanna, and Andrew are all aware of who is responsible for editing the piece and who the best point-of-contact is moving forward.

There should be at least seven layers of editing, including:

  • SEO for keyword research
  • Content strategist for overall points and also for optimized subtopics based on SEO
  • SEO for guidelines with related keyword, average length etc.
  • Writing process
  • First editing process
  • SEO enhancement along with second editing process
  • A final on-page SEO editing process

A systemic and organized content creation system will help improve the final product, and journalists are particularly well-suited to work within it.

Journalism Skills Will Help Improve Your Content

If you want to grow a content marketing business, hire a journalist: You will likely receive prompt, professional, high-quality content. Consult with a content marketer to see how you can put your journalistic skills to good use.

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