How to Develop a Great Content Strategy
The importance of content marketing cannot be overstated; and according to relatively recent reports, most marketers are all on the same page regarding its value to firms and businesses of all kinds. But less than 30% of marketers have a firm content marketing or production strategy.
The proliferation of open-source web solutions and website builders have made it increasingly easy for small businesses and startups to bring themselves online. It’s easier than ever for anyone to build a website and inundate the internet with their content. Unfortunately, all this content before the eyes of possible consumers and readers easily leads to a phenomenon called content overload: a period when an individual is so overloaded by possible content options that they simply ignore the vast majority. This understandably means that it’s more difficult to gain leverage with possible consumers, especially with content which hasn’t been painstakingly researched and optimized for audiences.
There’s never been a more important time to develop a strong and effective content strategy. And having a great strategy comes with more than one benefit: it can make weekly and monthly reporting easier, and can help you gain more detailed analytics about what kinds of content provides the most ROI for your firm.
Clarify Your Goals
What’s the goal of your content? Are you wanting to get more readers to your blog? Improve awareness of your brand? Build a steady stream of conversions or sales? The goal of your marketing should be simple and measurable; and this way, you can track the improvements your content marketing has made over time. And when you know your goals, you will also be able to narrow down the optimal audience for your content, which is important for the next step.
Cater To Your Audience
What sorts of content does your audience want to see? When do they consume their content, and in what form? Relatively few businesses will know this immediately, and it will take time and detailed analytics to discover the ‘optimal formula’ for content which appeals broadly to your firm’s audience. In this respect, a great content marketing plan will provide many different kinds of content, promoted over networks at varying times.
Consolidate Your Efforts
When you’re building your content strategy, it’s important to be as efficient as possible, and to make your plan multitask. Build SEO objectives into your plan, and think like an online reputation management agency and make sure that your content calls out for customer interaction and reviews. There’s no reason that a great content strategy can’t save you time and effort with other important marketing tasks: you’re only limited by your creativity with potential applications.
Set Your Benchmarks
The chief complaint about most marketing from employers is that it’s often difficult to see how successful marketing campaigns really are. So before you begin your new content marketing strategy, set clear benchmarks and goals. In some cases, your first goal might be as simple as regularly posting different kinds of content and gathering data to guide the next iteration of your campaigns. But other benchmark ideas might include more post interactions, page likes, conversions, or sales.
A great content strategy is all about a reasonably plan which you can stick to, which provides clear goals and metrics for success. But a great plan also ideally reduces wasted time and energy, and gives marketers better focus on concrete benchmarks. Don’t let yourself be like one of the many marketers who never settles on — or sticks to — a content marketing strategy. You’d be surprised how much easier it can make your marketing efforts, from content production to measuring your ROI.