What do WordPress site owners really need? I thought about this a lot when I was trying to figure out my first plugin idea. And the thing that came to mind was actually quite simple: they want more engagement.
Previously, creating lots of content was the best way to get more engagement. It might still be. After all, we always go back to our favorite sites because we expect some fresh content waiting for us there.
But creating content is hard and you need to create regularly just to catch people’s attention. At the same time, more and more people are creating content so standing out is getting more difficult.
This kind of content is the passive type though, one where people just sit down and scroll. Maybe they give a like or heart, but the interaction stops there.
What I propose is instead of making passive content, create active content instead. It’s content that people will use and maybe even use often.
Create Something They Will Use Instead
Engagement is all about interaction. The events we remember the most are ones where we were part of the action. So what we need to do is add some interaction in our content.
One of the ways to do that with your existing content is with a simple checklist. Since I personally find guides and lists fascinating, one thing I thought most of them lacked was a handy way to tick off each item on the list. It would help me check off which of the steps I’ve done and what else I need to do.
Say you’re following a guide on how to increase your dopamine levels (that’s the feel-good chemical our body produces to make us productive). You can read the article, say “huh, you learn something new everyday” then immediately forget about it after a minute or so.
If there was a checklist with the article, you could go through each item and discover what else you need to do to boost your dopamine. Maybe you’ll try the rest out later, just to complete the list. It’s a simple interaction but this makes the content way more useful versus a vanilla “how to” article.
So I thought: why not make it easy for WordPress folks to create this checklist? Maybe even build the checklist automatically, just install the plugin and boom! Instant content!
So my plugin Create Content Offers was born.
What’s a Content Offer?
I guess your next question is: what’s a “content offer“? In the most basic sense, a content offer is something you give to your readers in exchange for something, usually an email. For my initial plugin version, the checklist would be the content offer, automatically generated from the headings of your article.
So we’ve solved the first engagement hurdle but it’s better if you can pull the reader back for future posts. So I also added a way for you not just to create a checklist, but to collect emails before you show it to your readers.
You can add them to your mailing list and send them new posts, subscribe them to your newsletter, or send interesting offers later on.
So to sum it up, this plugin:
- Creates a content offer automatically for you. It builds a checklist out of your existing blog post’s headings. If there’s enough interest, I might also add ways to automatically generate PDFs, spreadsheets, and more.
- Collects emails in exchange for access to the checklist. You can view this list at the admin part of your WordPress site.
- Gives you the ability to customize the text and buttons in the form. You can do this while editing the post where you want to add the checklist.
But the other thing I want to figure out is if this plugin would actually be useful to WordPress site owners out there. So I’m releasing the beta version of the plugin here so you can test it out. And yep, it’s free!
To install the plugin:
- Grab the plugin zipped file from the download link above.
- In the admin area of your WordPress site, tap on Plugins in the menu at the left.
- At the top of the page, tap on Add New, then tap on Upload Plugin, also found at the top of the page.
- Tap on the Browse… button and find the zipped file you just download. Tap on Install Now once you’ve added the file.
- Wait for the upload to finish and then tap on Activate Plugin.
To add a checklist to a post:
- Choose an existing post that has some headings already. That means some of the text is formatted as Heading 1, Heading 2, etc.
- Tap the checkbox beside Show Checklist in Post.
- If you don’t use Heading 1 in your post, you can choose which heading type will be turned into a checklist. I use Heading 2 myself.
- Tap on the Update button and then go to the live blog post to see how it looks. You can always edit the text included later if you don’t want the defaults.
- You can see the emails you’ve collected in your Dashboard or when visiting the Content Offer Emails page in your admin menu.
- What’s the #1 feature you need that’s missing in the plugin?
- What bugs have you encountered while using the plugin?
Thanks and I hope you can help me improve this plugin so I can help you get more subscribers!