Honestly, if your business plan lacks a full-proof content strategy, you are in the soup. Because content has become an indispensable part of any brand strategy. Consumers are nowadays hungry for quality content, and that’s what every brand strategist and online marketers are trying to tap into.
And from this dissemination of SEO-rich brand content amongst the target audience, spawns the concept of content marketing!
Wherein you invest most of your marketing efforts in the creation and promotion of such quality content. Unless and until you live under a rock, or were in hibernation, you must already know about this particular marketing approach. All your acquaintances must be doing this and reaping great benefits.
The Perpetual Growth in Content Marketing
In 2020 alone, almost 40% of marketers planned to invest their time and efforts to develop a content strategy and customized business plans based on promoting brand content. Well, this is a challenge because it seems like everybody is doing the same thing. In a bid to make your brand stand out, you have to come up with a perfect approach and plan that will guide your content marketing towards success.
This plan or ‘strategy’ for creating content has become a “holy grail” for all content marketers and strategists, that also serves as a map for their business. Therefore, one must know everything that it takes to create the robust discipline of content strategy that drives qualified leads and website traffic.
Where do Online Marketers and Novice Bloggers Miss the Mark?
Too often, marketers, especially start-ups, fail to realize the importance of a proper strategy when it comes to creating ideal brand content. Almost 36% of B2B marketers do not have a documented content marketing strategy. As a result, much of the expenses are wasted churning out appropriate content, which results in burnout and demotivation.
But with a well-organized creative strategy, you can reach a large audience with less financial burden and time loss. Basically, developing original content is an open-ended field where one may play with creative ideas, but carrying it forward to execution sometimes seems daunting. That’s the reason why your business needs an exact strategy to produce awesome content on a regular basis.
Creating killer content strategy framework is a work of art that requires utilizing the resources you have at your disposal. It is no rocket science, yet several marketers fail to match their target audience’s needs, and thus end up in a total mess. Remember, there are endless possibilities with marketing through various content forms, but the main concern is what should you write about!
How to Create a Strategy that Actually Drives Traffic?
Often, we would just stare at our wonderful website blankly, and face writer’s block. Well, there are so many things to write, and that is the problem of plenty. Amidst the vast ocean of topics, choosing the right one that will boost your business is the challenge.
But one must never forget that the first and foremost purpose of being a skilled content writer is to know how effectively you can convey your information to your audience. How easily they consume the critical data and how fast that is shared.
These are the elements to be considered while developing a content idea. Utilizing the right kind of structure, details, up-to-date information, relevant context- all these are pivotal in marketing content formation.
So, the bottom line is, you need to create a successful content strategy for your brand to maximize your ROI. But you cannot just think and expect it to happen. In today’s Blog post, we would discuss a few of the tried and tested tips and steps to create a content marketing strategy, that truly unlocks the key to productivity and business success.
Set Clear, Concise, and Realistic Goals
Before you begin, it is crucial to set your exact goals that you aim for. But setting them in a way that makes the goals achievable is a daunting task.
So how do you set goals that you can achieve?
Keep them SMART:
Once you are done setting your goals, it’s time to ask yourself a few questions:
- How instrumental the goals are to successfully complete your overall marketing goals?
- Are the goals aligned with your overall marketing strategy?
- Are they effective enough, considering all other external factors?
- Do you have the necessary resources at your disposal to make the goals work?
If you are ready with all the answers, you are all set to jump onto point number 2!
Understand your Audience Thoroughly
Defining, learning and understanding your target audience is one of the pivotal components of creating any strategy. Same is applicable when you are planning for your content marketing. If you have a precise idea of who your audience are, you can create content that highly appeals to them.
This is the secret to your brand growth as well. With proper research, you may be able to choose a demographic that are most interested in your brand and service. And once that is done, your content team can develop digital assets that are duly targeted to that demographic.
Define Coherent Buyer Personas
Once you have your target audience set, start framing your buyer personas and profiling the target consumers. Whether you are B2B or B2C, defining your user/buyer personas is what makes your content development relevant. But why does your brand needs it?
Mainly for driving sales and marketing strategies. Secondly, profiling your buyer persona will make it easier for you to create custom and personalized messaging for each of your audience, serving their pain-points. Also, this helps in letting all your team members stay on the same page, regarding your target audience.
Now, one may ask, what does creating a buyer persona entail? Well, this is a critical matter that must be done with utmost importance. Include the demographic and psychographic information as in their preferences, priorities, their decision-making factors, challenges, goals, where do they seek information, etc.
So, start creating your buyer personas real quick, and shift to the next step, i.e., analyzing the marketplace!
Analyze the Market and Gather Necessary Insights
Know the market, learn the competition, analyze the influencers. You can learn so much just by analyzing the market you are targeting, which can immensely help in your brand positioning. Observe the kind of comments they receive, and the response they give. Evaluate the kind of competition that prevails in the market.
Based on your analysis, you can come up with brand content that establishes you as a marketing influencer; an expert in your domain. Also, it strengthens your position so that none of your rivals dwindle your authority.
Establish yourself as an Industry Expert within your Niche
Just as I mentioned about being an expert in a specific domain, the success of your content strategy depends very much on your stature within your niche. Establish your expertise on topics that appeal to your target audience and hook them. Address their pain points that you have gathered in point no. 2.
Offer some best practices and tips that work for them. Webinars, Whitepapers and eBooks, are a great source of resources that are highly sought-after by consumers these days. Take some time to prepare and publish a Whitepaper/eBook that keeps your foot up in your niche. Besides establishing your expertise and authority in the industry, knowing your customers inside out also helps in improving your responses to them.
One other way to showcase yourself as an influencer, is to respond to the audience with poise and insight into your product. That can also showcase your expertise and product knowledge.
Be Serious with your Brand Positioning and UVP
It’s all about the right positioning and the right value that sets a brand apart from the other. To create a content strategy for your brand, ensure you come up with a unique value for your product/service, deemed as the Unique Value Proposition.
With a UVP, you can position your brand in your desired market, and also can use it in the context of every content you create. In all your future marketing endeavors, you can leverage this UVP, that will strengthen your game!
Start Creating your Content around Contemporary Topics
This is the most pivotal area in your entire content development process, that decides on the success of your brand. This step is immensely dependent on your target audience because anything you create must appeal to them. After all, every effort you make is for them.
Select topics that are not just a fad, but are contemporary even after 5 years. The primary purpose behind creating content should not be immediate conversion and revenue.
But long-term qualified leads that build a relationship with your brand. Follow Google Trends to check what topics are in trend. Observe your competitors as well, to see what kind of content they are into. Also, you may start discussions to get into the mind of your audience.
Follow Quora and BuzzSumo to get a hint at the kind of content that has already performed greatly. Take your cue and start creating original content around these ideas.
Do not Forget to Map your Buyer’s Journey
Knowing what your prospects are searching and what queries they have in mind, are of paramount importance. Map your buyer’s journey, and add an extra layer of personalization to your brand assets. A robust content plan takes care of each of the phase of a buyer’s journey:
In each of the stages, the queries and needs of a buyer change, and if you have a content roadmap for that, you can improve the chances of them choosing you over others.
Select the Optimum Content-Format that Works Best with your Target Audience
Selecting the most suitable types of content formats is crucial. Because your chosen format allows you to reach your target audience in the most effective way. As of now, there are hundreds of content formats to choose from.
But out of so many, what is that ideal format that can bolster your content performance? Unless and until you have an unlimited budget and resources, do not go for producing multiple formats at once.
Instead, concentrate on one or two, and optimize those for your audience. It is quite understood that different content formats let you reach a different target audience. But it is not a good idea to burden your resources with developing multiple content formats. But how will you choose the ideal format while publishing your content?
Well, let your audience decide it for you!
Read your audience’s pulse and try to understand what kind of content they are liking and sharing. If your brand is all about high energy extreme adrenaline-kicking products, then do not go for eBooks or Whitepapers. Go for short and crisp videos. Motion in your content will help you reach your target audience easily.
Because for such a product, your target audience would be the younger generation, who usually prefer videos. Understand the kind of format that will best showcase your brand message, and which will amplify customer engagement the most. That way, you can get the optimum content format for all your assets.
Invest Significant Amount of Time in Promotion and Distributing the Content
Finally, we have successfully made it to the last but one of the most vital phase of our content strategy planning journey. And that is the promotion and distribution of the content. Why is it of so importance? Because this is where all your efforts and sleepless nights unite.
This is the secret ingredient of your brand success. Most of the successful brand strategists plan to spend 20% of their time to create the content. And 80% in promotion and distribution. Making your content accessible to your target audience is as significant in developing them.
A potent promotional strategy makes social media interaction mandatory for every online marketer and Blogger. This includes sharing links to your Blog posts on your social media handles. Responding to their comments and sharing backlinks to your Infographics or videos.
Conduct paid ad campaigns on Facebook, repurpose some of the most highlighting parts of your content into stories (Facebook, YouTube, Instagram).
Starting off a mailer campaign with email marketing automation platforms like Mailchimp, Moosend, SendInBlue, HubSpot, GetResponse- can also bring you good results. Choose an optimum channel that takes your content to all and sundry, so that your brand recall gets an impetus. And you carve a niche for yourself in the market.
Over to you now!
Polishing your content strategy for the web gives you a better visibility and a clear approach when it comes to improving your overall content marketing strategy. This is the last puzzle piece that you must put together to accurately address the needs of your target audience.
Indeed, marketing your content is a work of art that needs due patience, perseverance, and a lot of experiment. You won’t get overnight success no matter what you do; but at the same time, you mustn’t give up. This is only the beginning of a successful online business and every eCommerce marketer should follow these 10 key tips. Emphasize your originality. Innovate, revise, and adapt! Keep your content focused, and on a consistent schedule.
And if you would like any further advice about how to enhance your content developing and distributing process, then we are just an email away. So, off you go now, start creating your own Blog, skyrocket your brand, and give your audience the best user experience! Good luck with that!