What is high quality content?

The Scribble Weekly
Vol. 1, Issue 1

Welcome to the inaugural issue of The Scribble, a newsletter by Scribe, a financial content agency.

Each week, we’ll offer valuable insights about content marketing, with a focus on content for the fintech, finance, and financial-services-related industries.

Without further ado, let’s unleash this puppy!

What is high quality content, anyway?

It’s the buzzword of your nightmares, and even more terrifying if you try to go it alone.

Truth is, high quality content is more than just inserting a few SEO keywords in your blog post to try and game search ranking algorithms.

After years of providing content and content marketing strategies and learning from experts like this guy and this guy, we’ve learned that to produce high quality content, you must follow these 5 key rules:

The 5 rules of high quality content

1. Include research with links to credible sources
2. Use correct spelling and grammar
3. Encourage sharing and engagement
4. Be original
5. Structure in a logical and cohesive manner

Let’s dive more deeply into each rule:

1. Include research with links to credible sources

If you write “the world’s biggest hedge fund oversees more than $100 million in assets,” then you’d best substantiate that. Even if you have Bridgewater’s AUM committed to memory, or are speaking anecdotally, it’s good practice to support qualifying statements or numbers by linking and attributing the report, survey, study, or person whose providing the data or analysis.

We even like to dig a bit deeper. For example, this Institutional Investor report cites this number, but news reports often aggregate and interpret for us. So instead, we find the original source by linking our statement to this report from LCH Investments, instead.

Bottom line: Always look for and cite the original source.

2. Use correct spelling and grammar

All writers need editors. All editors need editors. Spelling and grammatical errors are a turnoff. Our take is that if a company can’t be bothered to check its spelling or grammar, then it’s likely their prospects won’t trust them with either the handling of their business, information, or both. We’ve found this to be especially true for foreign financial companies who seek credibility in English-speaking markets.

Bottom line: All writers (yes, even you) need editors. 

3. Encourage sharing and engagement

When others find your content useful, practical, and insightful enough to share with others (on social, in a Slack chat, or via email, for example) then it’s a sign that you’re doing high quality content right. Amplification is the reward and your content is validated when you and others share your content.

The more that you write on a topic, perhaps by exploring different and fresh angles, the more you’ll also solidify yourself as an authority and encourage others to view you as such. 

Bottom line: Make content that you’re proud to share and that others can easily engage with and share.

4. Be original

High quality content should be original, period. Even if you aggregate info or cite lots of sources properly, your end product should still be original, and not someone else’s reproduced work.

Bottom line: Don’t plagiarize.

5. Structure your writing in a logical and cohesive manner

Great content presents ideas, arguments, evidence, and answers to questions in a gradual, logical flow. Think about a bell curve, from a small slope upward (idea) to its highest point (meaty arguments, evidence) to its denouement and downward slope (wrapping up with answers). When an article jumps all over the place, is repetitive, and/or doesn’t really answer or explore a question, then what is its purpose, really?

Bottom line: Organize your article with a sound structure.

Of course, we’re always here to help you craft high quality content. And, our rigorous editorial process and understanding of regulation-heavy financial and financial-services-related industries ensures publication-ready content that is also as compliant as possible.

If you want to know more, then write us at hello@thescri.be.

And that's it for this week! We hope you enjoyed the first issue of The Scribble.

Your friends at Scribe

Next week:

A mind-boggling case study
A book or TV or film review

P.S. Summer Reading - We ❤️ books

It’s summer reading season, and we just went on a major Amazon Kindle spree.

Join us this summer as we read and review the following old and new titles:

The Little Book That Beats the Market, Joel Greenblatt
This timeless book explains the basics of equities investing and shares the formula for picking stocks for the long term.

I Will Teach You to Be Rich (2nd Edition), Ramit Sethi
Ramit’s back with new advice on budgeting, growing, and investing money, so you can spend comfortably on what you love.

Atomic Habits, James Clear
The Japanese Kaizen philosophy of small continuous improvements and a little bit of science, applied to 1% daily improvements for positive change.

Profit First, Michael Michalowicz
A new business cash management system that pays owners first and aims to leave operating expenses and taxes well accounted for.

The River, Peter Heller
Two old friends seeking a canoe adventure in the wilderness are challenged by wildfire, starvation, and the mystery of a woman gone missing