Content Writing for Beginners: 8 Tips to Attract and Hold Attention

Content Writing for Beginners

“Content is king.”

High-quality written content helps build a company’s authority, develops its brand, and drives valuable organic traffic to its website. 

Many organizations understand the power of blogging consistently, which is why content writing is still a valuable skill, even with artificial intelligence (AI) shaking things up.

As a content writer and editor with more than 10 years of experience, I’m going to share content writing tips for beginners that will help turn a rough first draft into a polished piece ready for submission.

What Is Content Writing?

Content writing is crafting purposeful, well-formulated, and persuasive texts tailored to resonate with a specific target audience

It’s a cornerstone of SEO and content marketing that transcends words on a screen. It’s a strategic communication approach that combines creativity, psychology, and marketing insight to establish a meaningful connection with readers.

As a content writer, your goal is to strike the perfect balance between informative and entertaining. In a word, to engage. 

Readers crave valuable insights, but also seek engaging content that holds their attention in a sea of distractions. 

By blending wit, humor, and a sprinkle of personality into your writing, you can transform seemingly mundane topics into captivating narratives that guide, persuade, and convert readers for your client or business.

Get more leads with less effort.

If you want a steady flow of targeted leads, we’ve got a proven process for driving organic traffic and converting it into qualified leads.

Go Beyond Content Writing Basics to Stand Out

Now that you understand what content writing is, let’s look at several things you can do to improve the quality of your content.

1. Read the Type of Content You’d Like to Write.

You can’t be a chef without sampling different cuisines. Likewise, you can’t write content if you don’t consume the type of media you’d like to produce.

Every creator will tell you the same thing: YouTubers have their favorite videos, musicians listen to music all day, and illustrators take inspiration from others’ art.

Artist making a new illustration with a paint roller
Let’s just call this a happy accident.

By reading content you not only figure out what you’d like to write, but how you’d like to write it.

This doesn’t mean blatantly plagiarizing, of course, but rather identifying styles you like and discovering the methods successful writers use to hook, inform, entertain, and captivate readers.

Along the way, you’ll be able to spot trends, hone your writing skills, understand audience preferences, and, at the very least, become inspired. 

2. Write. Then Write More.

Whether you’re writing for yourself or doing SEO copywriting for a paid client, the primary, best, and often most frustrating way to improve is by writing — a lot.

Like any skill, the difference between a mediocre practitioner and one who has mastered their craft generally comes down to one factor — how much time they’ve sunk into getting better at whatever they’re trying to do.

Content writing is no different. 

Practice is the key. The longer you spend writing, the easier the process becomes. You become faster, more concise, and build confidence in your writing ability.

The goal isn’t to become Shakespeare — plenty of content writers out there can’t spell to save their lives — it’s to become technically proficient at your craft.

The better you write, the more you convert, and the higher rates you can charge prospective clients. 

3. Keywords Are Your Friend. And Your Enemy.

A well-written piece of content without keywords is like a ship without a sail — sturdy and nice to look at, but it won’t take you anywhere.

Keywords are essential for every piece of content published on the internet — if the goal is to attract traffic. As a beginner content writer, learning this fact early is essential. 

I’m assuming you already have a rudimentary understanding of what a keyword is and how it’s used. 

Woman making an ok sign
Yes. Please keep it short.

But if you want to perfect content writing basics, do a deep dive into how Google interacts with keywords and how to find keywords that work for your goals.

There are a lot of guides out there. Here are a few to get you started:

Although I know I just said that keywords are critical for a good piece of written content — and they are — don’t let them rule you.

Many content writers just starting out make the mistake of focusing all their attention on keywords and, in the process, stripping their writing of all voice, charm, and soul. This is a mistake.

Good content needs to consider SEO, but it also needs to be entertaining to the reader. It’s a fine line — too much focus on SEO and your work becomes a soulless flycatcher for Google that no one wants to read, but not enough means no one will find it.

4. Editing Is Where The Magic Happens.

Sitting down in front of a blank page is terrifying, and the only way to assuage that fear is by voluntarily diving headlong into it. 

Likely, every word you write will be followed by some form of self-loathing or imposter syndrome.

This feeling is universal, and it doesn’t mean your work is terrible.

You see, the first draft of anything sucks.

Annoyed man making a facial expression
Thanks! You’re really helping now…

It doesn’t matter if you’re John Steinbeck, Anne Rice, or a fledgling content writer like yourself.

The good news is that it doesn’t have to stay terrible. In fact, you can transmute that lead into gold with a solid editing process.

But don’t do this immediately after writing. The trick is forcing yourself to sit down and bang out a first draft, knowing it will be awful. Then shelve it for a day or two and revisit it with fresh eyes and a fresh mind. 

This is where the magic happens. Suddenly you can see how to connect your disjointed thoughts, tighten your prose, and include links in an organic way you didn’t think possible during the initial writing process. 

You’re also going to trim a lot of fat. Don’t be afraid of this. Good writing is concise. The fewer words you can use to articulate your thoughts, the better.

5. Add More Formatting.

No one likes reading a solid wall of text. It’s challenging to get through and makes it difficult to absorb complex ideas and retain information.

And let’s be honest, most people don’t actually read an entire blog post — they skim. There’s a lot of content out there, and no one has the time to read through a 2,000-word article, no matter how well it’s written.

By using clever formatting, you can guide readers to key points so they can find exactly what they’re looking for. And you’ll make your article more readable in the process.

This means using a combination of subheadings and other tricks to divide your content into more digestible sections. 

For example, you can use bold and italics to emphasize certain information. Bullet points neatly list information, and short sentences and paragraphs make it easy for the eye to move down the page. 

6. Leverage the Capabilities of AI.

At the start of this article, I said that content is king. But is it still king when AI can churn out 1,000 words in a few seconds?


While AI is rapidly changing how content is created and consumed, the fundamental nature of content remains the same.

Remember, AI is not a content killer…

R2D2 robot
I’m a Death Star killer

…it’s a content enhancer.

As a beginner content writer, your job isn’t to compete against AI, it’s to use it to enhance your articles, newsletters, and landing pages. 

ChatGPT should be viewed as a tool rather than a competitor. Use it to help create an outline, organize your ideas, brainstorm killer headlines, or put together meta-descriptions that would otherwise have taken hours to write.

AI won’t be able to replicate your voice, personality, or branding fully — you know, the things that companies pay for — but it can drastically reduce the tedious aspects of content writing. So use it accordingly. 

7. Don’t Write Alone.

Growing up, my mother was a grammar authoritarian who always corrected me when I spoke. She prides herself on knowing how to correctly use an Oxford comma, title and sentence case, and the difference between who and whom.

And while I appreciate her direction, these days, I simply use a variety of plugins, apps, and web tools to do the grammatical heavy lifting for me. After all, why should I use an abacus to split the bill when the calculator on my phone does the job infinitely better?

In addition to ChatGPT, there are many other tools that you can use to help you write the best possible content, and you should be using as many of them as possible.

Here are a few of my favorites:

For a comprehensive list, check out the best writing tools according to Semrush.

8. Proofread Everything Before You Hit Send.

No matter how many tools you use to tighten up your writing, mistakes will still slip through the cracks. 

While the spelling and grammar check in Google Docs will find most errors, giving your work a final proofread before you send it to a client is always worthwhile.

Like editing, this means stepping back from your work, taking a breath, and returning to it with fresh eyes. I recommend scanning the article once for any glaring errors, then doing a slower, more thorough proofread.

Man writing content on a typing machine
Stupid autocorrect only makes things worse…

If you have someone on hand who can proofread your work — or you happen to know my mother — so much the better. They’ll be able to spot things you missed and help get your article into the best possible shape it can be.

Writing Great Content Is Hard: Let Us Do It for You

Writing content is hard. It takes years of practice, knowledge, and expertise.

Luckily, we have all three of those in droves.

Our team is ready to help create original, engaging, and helpful content for your site. Not only do we have the best writers in the game, but we have a fantastic SEO team to handle the technical side of things.

If you want to regularly create blog content and watch your organic traffic skyrocket, get in touch with us today.

Schedule your free SEO and content marketing consultation.

Martin Stokes Avatar

Get more leads with less effort.

If you want a steady flow of targeted leads, we’ve got a proven process for driving organic traffic and converting it into qualified leads.