Welcome to the world of content strategy! If you're reading this article, you're already on the right track to boosting your business with a great content strategy. Creating a content strategy is essential for any business, big or small. It's a plan of action that helps you reach your target audience with the right message, at the right time, through the right channels.
According to Content Marketing Institute, 64% of the most successful B2B marketers have a documented content marketing strategy.
In this article, we'll dive deep into the world of content strategy, exploring what it is, why it matters, and how you can create a winning content strategy that will take your business to the next level. So, let's get started!
Before we dive into the details of creating a content strategy, let's first define what it is.
A content strategy is a plan of action that outlines how your business will use content to achieve its goals. This includes everything from the type of content you'll create to how you'll distribute it and measure its success. In essence, you have to know your business goals in order to have an effective content strategy.
If you're still not convinced about the importance of a content strategy, let's look at some of the benefits:
With 82% of marketers actively investing content marketing, you do not want your business to miss an already tested and proven strategy for reaching customers.
In this article, you would learn the steps you need to understand when creating your content strategy and how to go about them.
For most people, a content strategy is about how to create content and deliver it. They do not see farther than that. But there are steps that one should take as one plans a content strategy. We will enumerate these steps in simple ways below.
Before you start cranking out blog posts and social media updates, you need to understand your audience.
Why, you ask?
Well, think about it. You wouldn't try to sell ice to an Eskimo, would you? That's a waste of time and resources. You need to know who you're targeting so you can create content that speaks directly to them.
So, how do you create audience personas? It's easy, my friend.
Do some research to get a general idea
First, you need to do some research. Look at your existing customer base and figure out what they have in common. Are they mostly young adults? Parents? Dog lovers? Get as specific as you can.
Create specific stories and scenarios from the general idea.
Once you have a general idea, it's time to get into the nitty-gritty. Give your audience persona a name and a backstory. What are their interests? What motivates them? What challenges do they face? The more detailed you can get, the better.
Put your audience personas to work
Now that you have your audience personas, it's time to put them to work. Use the insights you've gathered to inform your content creation. For example, if you're targeting young adults who love dogs, you might create a blog post about the top 10 dog-friendly cafes in your city. Or, if you're targeting parents, you might create a Facebook ad that shows how your product can make their lives easier. If you are targeting an Eskimo, you would have learned that he has a house made of ice, and you could probably sell him a clay dome where he can build a firepit to keep warm.
Remember, your audience is the heart and soul of your business. Take the time to understand them and create content that resonates with them.
This is like the bread and butter of content marketing. It's what separates the wheat from the chaff, the diamond from the rough, the... okay, you get the point.
The thing is, creating valuable content is crucial to attracting and retaining an audience. Your content needs to provide value, whether that's information, entertainment, inspiration, or something else entirely.
But here's the thing - it's not just about pumping out blog post after blog post. Sure, consistency is important, but what really matters is creating valuable content that your audience will actually want to engage with.
Why is valuable content so important, you ask?
Well, it helps to establish you as an authority in your field. When you provide your audience with information that is helpful, informative, and actionable, they're more likely to see you as a trustworthy source of knowledge. Plus, valuable content is more likely to be shared, which can help to expand your reach and bring in new potential customers.
Now, when we talk about valuable content, we're not just talking about blog posts. Sure, those are great, but there are so many other types of content that you can use to engage with your audience. Videos, podcasts, infographics, social media posts - the list goes on. The key is to figure out what types of content your audience responds to best and focus your efforts there.
Now, when it comes to the types of content you can create, the sky's the limit. Seriously, you can get as creative as you want. But here are a few ideas to get your juices flowing:
Need some inspiration? Here are a few examples of successful content marketing campaigns:
These campaigns all have one thing in common - they provide value to the audience. Whether it's through entertainment, education, or inspiration, each piece of content serves a purpose beyond just promoting the brand. And that's what sets them apart.
So, as you work on your content strategy, remember that it's not just about creating content for content's sake. Focus on providing value to your audience and you'll see the results in engagement and conversions.
We have talked about the importance of creating valuable content that resonates with your target audience, but how do you know if your efforts are paying off? That's great! But now what? How do you know if your content is actually helping you achieve your business goals? That's where setting goals and measuring success come into play.
First of all, setting goals is important for any marketing strategy, not just content marketing. It helps you stay focused and aligned with your overall business objectives. When it comes to content marketing specifically, goals can help you determine what type of content to create, who your target audience should be, and how to measure success.
So, how do you set goals for your content marketing strategy?
Well, it starts with understanding your business objectives, as we said before. What are you trying to achieve? Is it increased brand awareness? More leads? More sales? Once you have a clear understanding of your objectives, you can then create SMART goals for your content marketing strategy.
What are SMART goals?
SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound. Your goals should be specific and clearly defined, measurable so you can track progress, achievable but still challenging, relevant to your business objectives, and have a set deadline.
Pro Tip: It's important to be specific and realistic. Don't set a goal of getting a million views in a week if you only have a handful of followers. Instead, start small and work your way up. Maybe your goal is to increase engagement by 20% or to get 100 new subscribers in a month.
Measuring success with metrics
Now, let's talk about measuring success. There are a lot of different metrics you can track when it comes to content marketing, so it's important to determine which ones are most important to your specific goals.
Some key metrics to track include:
If your goal is increased brand awareness, you might want to track metrics like website traffic, social media engagement, and email subscribers. If your goal is more leads, you might want to focus on metrics like form submissions and landing page conversions. And if your goal is more sales, you'll want to track metrics like revenue and customer acquisition cost.
One thing to keep in mind is that measuring success takes time. Don't expect to see immediate results. Take the time to analyze your data, make adjustments to your strategy if necessary, and continue to track progress over time.
Alright, you've set some goals and measured your success. But how do you actually implement a content marketing strategy? Don't worry, I've got you covered!
The first step is to create a plan of action. This should include what type of content you'll be creating, how often you'll be posting, and where you'll be promoting it. Remember, consistency is key! You want your audience to know what to expect and when to expect it.
Now, let's talk about maintaining a schedule. This is where a lot of people tend to fall off track. Life gets busy and it's easy to forget about posting on social media or writing a blog post. But trust me, consistency is what will set you apart from the competition.
One way to make sure you stay on schedule is to use a content calendar. This can be as simple as a spreadsheet or as complex as a paid tool. It's up to you to decide what works best for your needs. A content calendar allows you to plan ahead and schedule your posts in advance so you don't have to worry about remembering to post.
Another helpful tool is an analytics dashboard. This will allow you to see how your content is performing and make adjustments as needed. There are plenty of free options available, such as Google Analytics and social media analytics.
Lastly, don't be afraid to outsource some of your content creation. Whether it's hiring a freelance writer or working with a social media agency, sometimes it's better to let the experts handle it. This will free up your time to focus on other aspects of your business.
Remember, consistency is key and there are plenty of tools and resources available to help you stay on track. Consistency is what is going to keep your audience loyal and build trust with them. It is also very important to your SEO efforts.
Having a well-crafted content strategy is crucial for achieving business success in today's digital world. Throughout this article, we have discussed the importance of a content strategy and recommended steps you could take.
To succeed in content marketing, businesses need to put in the time and effort to develop a content strategy that aligns with their goals and resonates with their target audience. By doing so, they can build brand awareness, increase engagement, and ultimately drive more revenue. after all, content marketing generates 3x as many leads as outbound marketing and costs only a third as much.
Our final recommendation is to continually evaluate and refine your content strategy as your business grows and evolves. A content strategy can be far more detailed than what we have put out here.
Stay up to date with industry trends and be open to experimenting with new ideas to keep your content fresh and engaging. With a solid content strategy in place, the sky's the limit for your business's success.