At the pace of growth of the internet world, people are creating a lot of content on many digital platforms.
Considering social media, news websites, forums, video sharing platforms etc.
Now when it comes to businesses, even they are creating content in the form of blogs, articles, how to guides, videos, images etc.
The concept of content marketing is usually not about just creating content but it is about creating valuable and helpful content which drives results, for the specific business goals.
Creating content without any specific goal will never reach any destination and will not even dry any simple results.
So in this article, we will be walking through the process of Content Marketing Strategy which drives results for businesses.
In the age of social media, all businesses are publishers and what publishers need is a steady stream of great content.
That’s easier said than done.
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If you’re trying to create content that will resonate with your audience on social media and separate you from all of the noise, great! You’re on the right track.
But first, you should establish your content marketing strategy.
A content marketing strategy works as your guiding light when it comes to the planning, production, promotion, and measurement of content.
Taking the time to create a solid strategy might seem like more work up-front, but it will reduce your workload over time and make your content more effective.
Now before you get started to create content marketing goals, we have gathered the complete content marketing walkthrough with how to create strategy aligning with your business goals.
Let's get started!
Align Your Content Marketing Goals To Your Business Goals
When you are planning to create content, what are the specific goals or results you are trying to accomplish with that piece of content?
How are you aligning your content to your business goal?
The content you are sharing should serve the purpose of your marketing efforts.
So what are you trying to accomplish? Here are some common content marketing objectives to consider:
- Increase brand awareness in key markets or verticals
- Drive referral traffic back to your website
- Increase signups
- Drive readers to a lead-generation landing page/form fill
So you see any of the above objectives, they are not aligned with Facebook Likes, shares, retweets or views. They are all data driven and completely measurable objectives, not the ones which are just to see the social shares.
Seeing to your social engagements is called vanity metrics.
When you are creating the content marketing strategy, you need to ask yourself the questions like; What are the content marketing goals?
Are these goals measurable?
How should we align our content marketing goals to the business goals?
If you are not answering these questions then you need to rethink your strategy.
Every goal needs to be measurable. Whether it’s a percentage, a dollar amount or a traffic number, identify the numeric target of your goal and decide how you will track your progress.
If you can’t figure out a concrete way to measure your goal, it is probably time to rethink it entirely.
Once you've settled with content marketing goals, break them down with different steps to achieve them.
Once you break down you will find the clarity on whether your content goal is aligned with your marketing goal, which is measured for the specific business goal which you want to achieve.
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Who Is Your Target Audience For Your Content Marketing Strategy?
When you are creating content you need to know for whom are you targeting with these piece of content.
Who is your target audience that will get help from your content?
Where do they spend most of their time, and when are they available on those platforms.
You need to get as much as possible details of your target audience so that you can share the exact possible content so that it drove the results.
A big part of successful content marketing strategies involves knowing your audience.
Depending on the goals you establish, you will need to put together either an audience profile or specific buyer personas that will guide your content ideation and creation moving forward.
Ask yourself these three important questions:
- What types of content do they share (format, tone, source, length)?
- Where online does my target audience spend most of their time (social networks, blogs, forums, etc.)?
- How can I best reach my target audience (organic social media, advertising, search)?
Let us say, your content goal is focused on sales or leads, then you need to understand who is your target audience, where are they now, whether are they at the top level management or are they the normal employees.
Are they the students yet learning? This will involve profiling your customers to know what a buyer will look like and the specific types of content that will reel them in.
What are their goals, and does your content offer insight that might help them achieve those goals? What about removing their pain points? These are all questions you will want to answer before you start creating content.
What Type Of Content Suits Your Business?
As far as now you have finished with your content marketing goals and specifying with your target audience.
Now it's time to decide what type of content best suits your business which appeals to your audience and as well helps reach your business goals.
Here are some few examples to flourish with:
Increasing Brand Awareness
When you want to do brand awareness, then you need to work on the broader group of the targeted audience which will solve multi problems with multiple group of audience.
The content will be like:
- Video tutorials
- How to articles
- Problem Solving infographics
Driving Traffic To Website
When you want people to come to your website, you need to have the specific reason they need to come to your website.
What will they find when they on your site? Will they get the solutions for the problems they are facing?
So you need to create content in which:
- You are solving the specific problems
- How to guides
- Visual images with easy to understand the content
- Targeted social media ads
- SEO-optimized blog content
- Guest posts on popular industry blogs
- Email newsletters
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Executing Your Content Strategy
Now, that you have decided what content to share with your specific goals, it is time to execute the same with proper planning and scheduling.
Plan does not work if you do not execute. You need to execute your plan with proper scheduling with right placements.
Your content execution plan should be a step-by-step map oh how an idea turns into a finished product.
This plan adds stability to your content marketing efforts and ensures that you can track the progress of each piece of content at every level.
What your content execution plan should include?
Let us understand in brief what do these consists of:
You need to sit and think about, what creativity can we have as the input for sharing the content.
You need to discover how your content should be shared on different platforms. Finding out the specific goal with specific, piece of content, with specific, platform to share.
Certain people should be responsible for regularly contributing content ideas, but this should also be open to anyone with a great idea. You don’t want someone to keep an idea to themselves because of the process.
If you have group of people creating the content, then Description involves, who is assigned to what content to create, what are the goals of the content to the specific person.
It also involves the target audience, the timeline/deadline and the role of each person involved in the project.
The Creation involves who will work for what content and who will assign the next work to whom. Let us say, when creating content, you might, for example, start with writers.
Once the writing is finished, you might pass off to a copy editor.
Then you might pass along to designers or videographers. Once the content is completed you might pass it off to a manager.
Any required changes will go back to the responsible creative and then back to a manager for final approval.
Promoting Your Content
Now once you have written your content and you are ready to share it on different platforms, you will have to line up with different promotional strategies.
Not all content is created equal, so you need to predetermine how you will promote your content for maximum reach and effect.
Your content promotion process ensures that all of your efforts creating great content weren’t for naught.
When you want to promote your content you need to list down which are the different sources you are going to promote it.
Then you need to channelize the content in different forms.
The most used sources are:
Owned Social Media Channels
Earned Social Media Channels
Paid Social Media Channels
Owned Social Media channels are the social media accounts you have for your businesses in Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc.
The followings and the loyal audience you have grown on all these channels.
So as you share interesting content and useful content they come back to your site when you share it on social media channels.
This traffic is free as it comes from your own social media following.
It may also be the most reliable form of social media promotion, as sharing great content on your social channels can create a social media community of return visitors—a cycle where the more good content you share, the more your audience comes back to view that content.
Earned Social Media Channels are those where you get mentions and shares form others on all social media channels.
These are earned as they are being shared and mentioned by the other audience on their own.
This channel audience is most important as they are mentioned by others on their own because of your helpful content.
This actually works like word of mouth in social media channels.
Not only are you reaching a wider audience without paying for that reach, social shares now actually impact your content’s ranking in Google search.
In that way earned social media isn’t only valuable; it’s integral to your content marketing success.
Paid Social Media Channels are the audience you have outgrown by paying to boost your posts on social media channels.
You reach the potential audience by boosting your posts and make them visible in the timeline of a targeted audience.
By putting money behind your social media posts, you’re given the opportunity to target a very specific audience and increase your social media reach when you need it most—right after the content is released.
In other words, social media ads get your content in front of the right people are the right time.
Other types of content promotion include:
Now when you collect emails of the users of your website, you can send them the regular post and content updates directly to their inbox and drive them back to your site.
You should always ensure content is search engine optimized (SEO) so that it ranks highly in Google search. This will drive continuous viewership of your content and is particularly valuable if traffic or registrations are your goals.
Search or Display Ads
You can even start promoting your content on search and display ads. When people are searching for your related content, you can promote it on search ads or even display ads on search engines like google.
Promoting your content with the influencer will help you reach an audience at a very faster rate. As influencers have already grown their loyal audience base, you can ask them to promote it in front of their audience and make it reach it to the audience.
How To Measure Your Content Marketing?
You’ve established processes for the ideation, creation, and promotion of your content, so what’s left? Your content marketing strategy is only valuable if it’s helping you to succeed, and to determine that you need to have a measurement process in place.
The best way to start measuring your content marketing efforts is by using the tools like Google Analytics, Facebook Insights, and other 3rd party analytic tools.
Thes tools help you determine how far are you reaching the potential audience, you will even get to know are your goals inclined towards the results arrived or are they feeling.
When you start measuring you will get to know what are the changes you need to make to your content strategy.
Once found out you can alter the necessary changes and improve your content strategy.
Content Marketing Strategy is the most useful strategy in an internet world. Creating content that helps people and attracting them towards your services is the most organic and more cost-effective than any other marketing or promotions.
When you nourish your products and services with content marketing strategy, you will receive most of the outcomes with better loyalty as well, the reason you get the loyal users is that of your helpful content what you share daily.
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