Posted by Jan Rodrigo Evangelio on April 30, 2009
With all the struggles for optimal ranking in search engines, free-for-all skirmishes for the internet surfers’ attention, and online campaign for intellectual property rights, the Internet has indeed become a battlefield of information.
What do we do to take the upper hand when there are millions of enemies? The main weapon, perhaps, would still be quality content. Simple as it may seem, most battle-scarred and successful web generals still recommend the tried and tested strategy, which is to equip their top fighters (the writers!) the right training, and of course, the guns and ammunition.
Aside from learning the basics such as producing brief and concise, keyword-rich write-ups, the writers should be able to write FOR the readers’ sake, NOT for the website. And there is no better training than to write and write and write. Guns and ammos? Well, the people who do the technical side.
We are speaking of the internet as a battlefield. How do we apply then the oldest, most successful and influential book in military strategy? The Art of War by Sun Tzu has been deemed relevant, not only in real battlegrounds, but also in business and a lot of other fields. Let us now apply it in web content writing.
“Know thy self, know thy enemy, and know when to strike.” Essentially, this is what the Art of War is all about. If the writer knows his strengths as well as weaknesses, he will use these to his advantage by doing what he does best and working on the areas he needs to improve on. As a company, knowing your goals and potentials, and where you are right now, create a sense of direction and dedication to achieve these goals.
The enemy does not only mean your rivals. Knowing your rivals, knowing how they operate and wage war, is very helpful. But the enemy also includes the rules that need to be followed in the internet. Being aware of the rules of battlefield, knowing how to play by them, and having the ability to bend them a little, give you a lot of advantages. Examples of these are recognizing intellectual property rights, rules on keywording, etc.
“Know when to strike.” Planning is also key to winning battles. A firm grasp of what to do and how to do it provides a lot of advantage. But in a competitive world as the internet, sometimes plans collide and strategies overlap, just as ideas and opinions in writing do. The ability to respond quickly is the way to go. In content writing, specifically, a writer needs a lot of repackaging and enhancement to do in order to create something new.
Theoretically laid down, the Art of War guides writers to battle it out in the internet. The book also states that winning battles does not happen overnight. And the same goes for writing content. The right training is not only to write and write and write, but also enjoy.