I’ve recently been asking contacts, readers here and industry figures to participate in short interview / case study pieces for this blog. As I’ve been compiling the responses I’ve given quite a bit of thought to the use of interviews in good content.
Be it a useful blog, business book or a favourite magazine; case studies, examples and interviews all help bring a topic to life.
So should you use interviews in your content and if so, who should you interview and what should you talk about?
8 Reasons to Use Interviews and Case Studies :
- Interviews can offer a different perspective. No matter how much you try to empathise with your audience or address their problems, you are not them. An interview with someone like them with a similar take on your industry will, naturally, resonate better with that market. If part of creating good content is to address the issues your audience are wrangling with, then interviewing someone from a similar position makes perfect sense.
- Interviews can demonstrate a practical implementation. Prospective customers are often focused on the end result. What will this product do for me? How will I benefit from this service? What affect will adopting this mindset have on me? Interviews with successful examples can serve as a useful way of answering those questions – almost like before and after photos.
- Interviews allow you borrow trust and reinforce your argument. Having someone else agreeing with you, especially a respected industry figure, lends weight to your own argument. Even if the disagree on some issues, it portrays you as part of the discussion.
- Interviews allow you to borrow brand recognition. Feature interviews are regularly the focus of magazine covers. People can be persuaded to buy the magazine because of who the interviewee is, not who the magazine is. A high-profile interview (i.e. someone high-profile in your market) makes your content all the more appealing.
- Interviews are a practical solution to your needs. If you need to generate content, a brief telephone, video or even email interview can provide you with plenty of useful fodder for your blog, articles or other content.
- Interviews inspire you to think more too. As I’ve conducted these interviews, learning how others think about content has inspired several posts and articles in the making. It’s also helped me understand how content is already being used in the marketplace and how best to position our own services in response.
- Interviews build contacts and make you smarter. An interview or case study is often a good way to get to know people in your industry better and learn from them.
- Interviews enhance the quality of content you deliver. In any industry there are people that you, and your prospects, can learn from. Interviewing successful people in your industry actually makes the content you deliver more useful. Bringing that info to your prospects makes you a trusted resource.
Think like a journalist
The trick is to think like a journalist in search of the perfect story. Who has the information that your prospects need? What industry voices do they listen to? Who can help put a face to this concept? How can I relate this back to my audience?
A great interview can help you to deliver quality content on a par with the newspapers, trade magazines and conferences that prevail in your marketplace.
So that’s the ‘why’, next time out we’ll look at the ‘who’ to interview and the ‘how’ to interview and even ‘what’ to talk about.
Have you used interviews in your content? If so, feel free to add a link to it/them in the comments below.