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You may reflect fondly upon your relationship with your web content. The quality time you spent developing ideas, crafting content, and sharing posts with social media friends might make you feel all warm and fuzzy about your solid friendship with your online companion.
But don’t think for one second that just because you love your web content, the feeling is mutual. If you made any mistakes while crafting your web content there is a big chance that your web content is talking trash behind your back.
So before you get blindsided by your best friend, take some time to learn a few backstabbing tactics from the professional, Hollywood mean girls. This way at least you won’t have to wait until prom to find out what your web content is saying behind your back.
The Talk: You are Old News
Onscreen: As queen of the school, Cher thought she was doing a good deed when she transformed hopelessly-dorky, new-student Tia in “Clueless.” But as Cher exerted all of her time and care in re-inventing her soon-to-be-backstabber BFF, the queen of Beverly Hills stopped taking care of herself. And as soon as Cher started to lose her edge, Tai- a newer, superior version of the Valley’s Golden girl –jumped in to steal Cher’s spotlight and force her to lose her audience.
Online: Just because you put a lot of time and energy into your web content in the beginning doesn’t mean the work ends there. You constantly have to keep your web content entertaining to hold an audience. If your web content is outdated, boring or bland, readers will move along to find the next big thing.
The Talk: You are Fake
Onscreen: Laney Boggs was content in her world of misfit high school outcasts in“She’s All That.” But when star quarterback Zack Siler transforms Laney into the type of girl who could be crowned Prom Queen, he changes everything about her. But taking off her glasses, cutting her hair and slipping off her overalls didn’t miraculously change Laney into Prom Queen and mean girl Taylor Vaughan had no problem exposing (& embarrassing) Laney Boggs as the imposter that she was.
Online: If you hype your website with flashy, showy promises and headlines, you better back it up. You can’t simply slip your website out of its overalls and into a red dress and expect a drastic change. Your web content must back up the promises that you make. Readers will find out if you are not authentic and may never forgive your lack of legitimacy.
The Talk: You Are a Clone
Onscreen: When wanna-be journalist Josie Geller is assigned an undercover reporting job in “Never Been Kissed” she is forced to return to her dorky, former high-school self. But as Josie weasels her way into the popular table, she allows it-girls Kirsten, Kristin and Gibby to redefine who she is. As Josie forgets her true self and becomes a copycat of her friends, she loses the respect of her nerdy ally Aldys and love-interest Sam Coulson because the Josie they knew got lost in the crowd.
Online: The only thing worse than a website with no content, is a website with reused or regurgitated content. Readers want to see something new and original, so if your content offers the exact same thing as dozens of other websites, your audience will notice and move along. Without content that is unique and creative, your website will simply blend in with crowd.
The Talk: You are Mean
Onscreen: Cady Heron didn’t know what she was getting herself into when she joined forces with the school’s most popular clique, the Plastics. But it didn’t take long for her to play along with the ruthless “Mean Girls.” Soon Cady was participating in three way-calling attacks, behind-the-back bashing and frienemy sabotage. Her bad behavior eventually cost her all of her true friends.
Online: If your web content is not user-friendly, it can quickly be misconstrued as a user enemy. Make sure that the content on your website is easy to navigate and skim through. Use simple sentences, short paragraphs and bullet points so your readers don’t feel like you are being condescending or long winded. Talk to your audience like they are your friend and you will keep them as readers.
The Talk: You are a Liar
Onscreen: When the homecoming queen of Reagan High dies in “Jawbreaker,” Julie agrees to go along with BFF Courtney’slie that they know nothing about it. But once Julie agrees to tell one lie, she gets lost in a deep web of other untruths. And when Courtney points the finger at Julie and calls out her lies, Julie is so deep in deception, no one can believe anything she says.
Online: If you tell one lie on your website, your content credibility is as good as gone. Once your readers see that you were willing to share information that was not legitimate or factual, they will assume that everything else they read on your website could be another lie. You must stick with the truth if you want to establish trust.
The Talk: You are a Joke
Onscreen: “Carrie” knew that she was an outcast, but it didn’t stop her from believing it when the popular kids started to embrace her as one of their own. Against her mother’s warning, Carrie, believing that her popularity was legitimate, attends the school prom where she is announced as Prom Queen. But as Carrie stands on the stage, accepting her sudden admiration, she gets a huge red, rude awakening.
Online: Simply having a website doesn’t mean that you have built an authentic, professional, online presence. Don’t promote your website or attract attention until you are sure that all of your ducks are in a row. Errors on your website such as nonsensical filler text or misspellings will make you look foolish. If your content is ridden with errors, no one is going to take you seriously and “they are all going to laugh at you.”
So maybe it’s time to rethink that loving, friendly relationship you think you have with your web content. Double check your content for mistakes before it’s too late. By making some changes to your online content, you may be able to save yourself from being forced to sit alone in the lunchroom.