Data Journalism Dos And Don’ts To Elevate Your Content Marketing

Data Journalism Dos And Don’ts To Elevate Your Content Marketing
SHARE
THIS



In this guest post, Yoghurt Digital Senior SEO & Content Strategist Jia Yoong Lee reveals the dos and don’ts of elevating your content marketing.

When Spotify urged people to take a page from the 3,445 people who streamed the ‘Boozy Brunch’ playlist on a Wednesday, hearts and minds were won all over the world.

Why?

Because Spotify was providing an amusing insight into our quirky habits based on clever use of customer data. Data, when used the right way, is incredibly compelling (as are boozy brunches, of course).

According to WordPress, 70 million new posts are published each month. At a time when content marketing is reaching peak saturation, leveraging data to tell a story – otherwise known as data journalism – is a great way to offer engaging, valuable and unique content to your customers across a number of touchpoints.

What is data journalism?

 Data journalism is a discipline that combines a range of skills – from data mining and analysis, to graphic design, coding, and writing – to uncover insights that can be used to shape a compelling story. It’s been a common practice in the world of journalism for some time.

The Guardian Datablog is a great example, where many important stories like the crowdsourcing of 450,000 MP expenses records in the UK, and the coverage of the Afghanistan and Iraq war logs, have been produced through the analysis and narration of data.

Why do we need data journalism in content marketing?

People have always loved a good story. We’ve been telling them since the beginning of time. And data journalism is one of the best tools available for marketers to tell an engaging, unique story that stands out from the saturated content crowd.

When an organisation collects data – from customer purchase habits recorded in the CRM, to research findings for a new product trial – that data can be used to uncover unique insights, twists, or observations. Those insights that then can be turned into a valuable story or piece of thought leadership that your brand can own and share. Today, content marketers are leveraging data journalism to talk about:

  • User-centric research findings
  • Unique characteristics or interests of customers
  • Relevant growth trends
  • Industry thought leadership
  • Exploring a surprising outlier or anomaly

These can be communicated through anything from social media posts and ecommerce blogging to data visualisation maps, infographics and videos. When executed effectively, data-driven content can dramatically increase customer engagement, brand awareness and loyalty for companies big and small, B2C and B2B. 

The 5 dos and 5 don’ts on breaking into data journalism

So, how can you best use data journalism in your content marketing strategy? For anyone that’s unfamiliar with data analytics, data journalism can seem like an intimidating feat. But at Yoghurt Digital, data is our bread and butter. Here are the top 5 do’s and don’ts of data journalism for content marketing:

  1. Don’t forget the human side

To start off, you’ll likely need to source and organise your data in order to determine your story. If you already have an idea of what your story might be, this can help you narrow your data mining down faster. You can use existing company insights, or scout the web for the latest trends. Some good places to look are Amazon Public Data Sets and Google Trends.

Once you have your data, it’s vital that you avoid the trap of forgetting the human side of your project. Don’t get so caught up in the numbers that you forget about your customer. Always create content with the end user in mind – make it relevant, meaningful and engaging.

  1. Do establish trust

Bringing customers into your content strategy by including user-generated data such as tweets, comments or reviews will help your audience feel more invested in your content. Customers relate much better to stories based on human insight and emotion, so ensure your content leverages data to achieve this.

Providing interesting, relevant insights in a user-friendly format is an excellent way of building a sense of legitimacy and trust within an audience, and can even lend your brand some extra personality.

Just be careful about using data in a way that’s inaccurate or misleading. Remember that age-old saying: “It’s funny because it’s true”. There’s something about the truth that surprises, amuses and disarms us all – and real, meaningful data is about as truthful as you can get.

  1. Don’t make it complicated

It can be easy to get excited by all the insights you’ve uncovered and want to cram everything into one content piece – but you need to calm down. Every good story has a clear and concise structure, whether it’s chronological, process-based, or a traditional narrative.

Data journalism isn’t about just blurting out a bunch of numbers and leaving your audience to figure it out. It’s about telling a story using numbers, facts and insights to make it an engaging and persuasive experience.

  1. Do have a clear angle

Channel your inner journalist and ask: What’s the angle? Aim to make your story as original, compelling and punchy as possible. Be careful not to crowd your story with too many bits and pieces.

Your storyline doesn’t have to be extraordinary or completely new. It can even be a subject everyone’s discussing. Take the time to reflect on why you want to tell this story, what it means to your customers and use your unique brand voice and perspective to give a fresh take on the subject.

Another way to keep your story user-friendly is through different kinds of content formats, like infographics, animated videos, or data visualisation. The incredible Marvel Cinematic Universe by the Straits Times in Singapore is a great example of data visualisation taking a large, complex dataset and translating it into a fun, easy-to-navigate experience for audiences.

  1. Don’t just publish and wait – promote, promote, promote

After all your hard work, don’t simply hit the publish button and wonder why every news agency hasn’t picked up the story. Remember to shout about your work both before and after it’s gone live. Reach out to journalists covering your industry, email your customers and share it on your social channels. You can even offer special sneak peeks of your findings to tease people’s curiosity. Having a strong SEO strategy from the beginning of your process will also ensure any content you create will be easily discoverable.

Please login with linkedin to comment

content data data journalism Opinion

Latest News

Is B2B Marketing Missing Its Emotional Touch?
  • Media

Is B2B Marketing Missing Its Emotional Touch?

B2B marketers could learn a thing or two from their B2C colleagues, argues WP Engine VP APAC sales Mark Randall in this guest post. It surprises me how many B2B organisations are not quite hitting the mark when it comes to reaching their audience. When talking directly to businesses, many brands are missing an opportunity […]

Opinion

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Burger King Trials Reusable Packaging
  • Media

Burger King Trials Reusable Packaging

Here's a top initiative from Burger King that does kinda sound like a slightly tedious Craig Reucassel documentary.

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Smarter Use Of Art & Science Stretch Auto Budgets Further
  • Media

Smarter Use Of Art & Science Stretch Auto Budgets Further

The majority of adverts uploaded to Facebook aren’t created for Facebook as its priority. This is causing huge inefficiencies and poor performance for brands, many of whom are facing up to shrinking budgets. Tom Phillips (main photo) managing director at Connecting Plots shares lessons from 12 campaigns they optimised for auto brands… It’s no secret […]

Opinion

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Young Guns Take The Lead With The First PRIA University Mentoring Program In NSW
  • Media

Young Guns Take The Lead With The First PRIA University Mentoring Program In NSW

On Wednesday, 21 October 2020, the PR industry was bolstered by the launch of the Public Relations Institute of Australia’s (PRIA) first University Mentoring Program in New South Wales, adapting the traditional face-to-face program to a virtual format for the first time. In collaboration with the University of Technology Sydney (UTS), the PRIA NSW Young […]

JCDecaux Teams Up With MyPayNow To Serve Real-Time Data
  • Media

JCDecaux Teams Up With MyPayNow To Serve Real-Time Data

JCDecaux has developed a dynamic digital campaign with live timetable data where commuters can access their money from MyPayNow while waiting for the bus. In an exclusive nationwide Out-Of-Home campaign, JCDecaux’s SMARTFRAME digital assets are broadcasting bus arrival times, letting commuters know how far away their next bus is – and just how easy it […]

Rokt Secures $US80M Series D Investment Round
  • Technology

Rokt Secures $US80M Series D Investment Round

Rokt has today announced an investment of US$80M. The capital will help accelerate research & development and support the expansion of its client base into new verticals and geographies as Rokt continues to make e-commerce smarter, faster, and better. The funding round was led by Rokt’s largest institutional shareholder TDM Growth Partners , and supported […]

Nature Invests In New Team Members And Innovation
  • Marketing

Nature Invests In New Team Members And Innovation

Leading strategic insights consultancy Nature today announced it has hired several key new team members and restructured senior roles to increase its focus on innovation, including new technology and data sources.

PayPal And Buy From The Bush Launch New Marketplace
  • Media

PayPal And Buy From The Bush Launch New Marketplace

PayPal Australia and Buy From The Bush have joined forces to launch a new online marketplace to showcase rural Australian small businesses in time for Christmas. The expanded partnership aims to build stronger connections between bush businesses and Australians in cities and suburbs across the country. The new Buy From The Bush Marketplace is an […]

Wednesday TV Wrap: Gruen Takes A 200K Hit
  • Media

Wednesday TV Wrap: Gruen Takes A 200K Hit

Gruen plummets 200,000 viewers in just one week. However, that's not to say Highway Patrol went up a similar amount.

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Philippe Krakowsky Named New IPG CEO
  • Advertising
  • Media

Philippe Krakowsky Named New IPG CEO

Philippe "Crackers" Krakowsky named new IPG global CEO. However, says he only uses Crackers on less formal occasions.