The Only Guide You Will Ever Need On Building An Effective Content Marketing Strategy
For those of you looking to have some fruits, you have two options – you could go to a store and then buy your preferred fruit.
Or, you could get some seeds, plant them, nurture the saplings, then the plants and ultimately reap the fruits of your efforts (no pun intended).
You might wonder where we’re heading with this. It’s simple and boils down to the difference between the two.
Going to a store and getting your preferred fruits is a one-time affair. Everytime you feel like eating the fruit, you’ll have to pay and get it. On the other hand, growing a plant ensures a perennial supply of your favorite fruit. The returns are just endless.
You only have to ensure you nurture the plant once and take good care of it.
Content marketing is your plant that consistently helps you generate a perennial supply of leads for your business.
The process is simple yet solid. Simply ensure your strategies are in the right place.
This is exactly where this extensive post comes in. If you’re looking to revisit your existing content marketing strategy or figuring out one for your business, this will help you find the right direction and approach, ensuring you realize your traffic and lead generation goals.
What Is Content Strategy?
In simple words, content strategy is an approach that aligns your marketing efforts such as lead generation or brand visibility strategies with your business goals and objectives. An airtight content marketing framework ensures you desired goals are met with minimal monetary investment and highest returns.
This includes the development of original pieces of content across videos, blog articles, podcasts, forum answers or more to educate your target audiences. This process builds gradual trust among your audience and projects you as an authority in your domain.
So, when the internet is filled with your content, your visitors automatically see you as a credible business and wouldn’t think twice about purchasing from you or availing your services.
Why Marketers Need To Create An Effective Content Marketing Strategy?
Let’s begin with some numbers for some perspective.
- Statistics show that content marketing is 3x more effective in generating leads than conventional outbound marketing strategies.
- Not just that, close to 72% of the businesses that have implemented content marketing strategies have reported an increase in leads generated.
With such compelling numbers, let’s further understand that content marketing brings in long-term benefits to your business from a marketing perspective. While conventional lead generation campaigns like paid marketing tactics bring in quick results, you cannot be sure of the lead quality.
There could be more cold leads in the mix than warm and hot leads. This affects your investments as well because you put in money to acquire every single lead and when the lead you get in touch with refuses to pick up your call or respond to your mail, the money channelized in getting that lead is lost forever.
However, that’s not the case with content marketing. This involves investment in terms of time more than money. It classifies your visitors into different segments of buyers’ journey and lets you target each visitor individually with the content they would prefer to read.
This way, you not only captivate their interest but sustain it as well. You develop a virtual rapport with your visitors, ultimately leading to conversion.
With that said, developing a sound content strategy is tough but this guide will help you understand things better. Let’s look at some of the crucial factors to consider before you plan your content marketing strategy.
Key Things To Consider Before You Plan Your Content Strategy
I. Define your audience
One of the first things you need to do is define your audience. Knowing who your customers or visitors are lays the foundation for all your content development efforts. You should look into their attributes such as demographics, geographic location, purchasing power, decision-making authority, technical skills and more and develop appropriate content that will be accessible to them.
II. You also nee data-driven decision making
This is the age of data-driven decision making and you need to establish stringent KPIs and metrics to assess the performance of your content marketing efforts. Have actionable KPIs such as numbers on reach, engagement, clicks, clickthroughs, signups, registrations, following and more and keep building on your creative tactics. Having multiple data touch points will also help you assess the sentiment around your brand and business.
III. Have Unique Selling Point
Fix on your USP or develop one from scratch. Though multiple content strategies are ideal, have one element that stands out from the crowd. It could be your YouTube videos, whacky interviews on podcasts, viral Instagram reels or more. This will allow instant brand recall value.
IV. Make different type of content list
Before you develop your content strategy, make a list of the different types of content you will develop and roll out in the market. This is where your knowledge of the target audience comes into picture. Knowing how they access content and from which medium will let you tailor your approach.
V. You also need the touceh of a specialist
Every form of content requires the touch of a specialist. From designing a mobile app to producing a video, the deployment of ideal resources matters. So, ensure you have the right talent in your team and the budget for it.
How To Create A Content Marketing Strategy
This is what everything boils down to. Now that you know the factors you should consider, let’s delve in a little deeper, shall we?
#1. Define Your Goal
What do you want to achieve with your content marketing strategy? Is it to generate leads? Do you want to increase the brand visibility on the internet? Are you looking to become an authority in your domain? Do you want to build a steady email list?
Knowing answers to these will help you determine your content marketing goal. When you know your goal, you could figure out how you can go about developing the right content for it.
#2. Run A Content Audit
While this is more applicable to those who have already been experimenting with different content strategies, freshers or beginners could benefit from this as well. Content auditing refers to assessing the performance of your existing content strategies to find out where your efforts are lacking or the disconnect between your efforts and results.
From a beginner’s perspective, try out different strategies and find out which approach yields best results. You could start off with publishing blog posts. Run audits frequently as consumer dynamics tend to evolve consistently.
#3. Choose A CMS
CMS stands for Content Management System. Having the right CMS makes your job easier as it allows you to manage, track and publish your content. They also feature forms, sign up mediums, integrated email services, basic automation and more for added functionalities.
Modern CMS portals allow you to choose aesthetical templates that fall in line with your niche or business and have features that could be utilized by people who aren’t that tech savvy as well.
Some of the examples of CMSs include Hubspot and WordPress.
#4. Brainstorm Content Ideas
This is the most crucial aspect as the other factors could be easily worked on. Coming up with creative ideas is the most important stage and this decides if you connect with your target audience. Once you know who your target audience is, it’s vital to understand how you could tap into their beliefs and sentiments.
This detail will let you develop creative ideas that would resonate with your audience. For instance, if you decide to start with blog posts, brainstorming ideas involves coming up with topics, perspectives, opinions and more. The more complex the content format, the more the efforts.
To help beginner marketeers, there are tons of tools available as well. More on that later.
#5. Publish Your Content
After you brainstorm your content idea and develop it, you’re all set to publish it on the right medium for your audience to consume and assimilate. Right medium is the keyword here.
If you’ve worked on a video, the medium would be a platform like YouTube, blogs could be your CMS, podcasts could be a platform like Anchor and more. No matter where you publish your content, the goal is to drive traffic to your website or a place that ties back to your business goals.
Tools For Topic Research
Like we mentioned, there are helpful resources and platforms that let marketeers get fresh ideas for their campaigns. Let’s look at the most common platforms.
Probably the most popular platform, Hubspot has a super-specific blog ideas generator feature that you can use to get ideas on topics to write about. You could then make use of keyword research tools to curate keywords you would like to target with your post for SEO.
Another prominent platform to get ideas from is BuzzSumo. It offers a range of tools ideal for content marketing such as market research tools that curate and rate ideas based on topic popularity and buzz on the internet. This will help you write on trending topics for more visibility.
Speaking of trendy topics, Feedly is a great RSS tool to get quick notifications on topics that are trending. This will help you instantly get ideas and post content within a short span of time while the topic is still hot in your community.
Content marketing is not complex if it’s organized. You need to have an agile marketing methodology to be flexible and experiment with different content formats and types to gauge the effectiveness of your efforts.
You never know what clicks among your target audience.
So, work on your strategies, implement, test, repeat and take data-driven decisions for ultimate business growth.