Quick guide to creating an effective content strategy
What Is A Content Strategy?
A content strategy is the management of any media that you create and own, whether that’s written, visual, downloadable etc. It is the piece of your marketing plan that continuously demonstrates who you are and the expertise you bring to your industry. You might've heard how important content creation is to the growth of your business, but it needs to have a well-planned purpose and content plans are becoming a requirement these days.
Don't worry though - there are no real universal layouts to a content plan only what works for you as a business.
Why Do You Need Content Strategy?
Content marketing helps businesses prepare and plan for reliable and cost-effective sources of website traffic and new leads. If you can create just one blog post that gets a steady amount of organic traffic, a link to an ebook or free tool will continue generating leads in the future.
What do I put in my Content Strategy?
Now is the time to start your research. You may wish to conduct interviews with customers, develop personas and understand the customer journey as much as possible to develop great content for different audiences and sustain engagement.
Due to the importance of a content strategy within industry, there are some key things to consider namely the what, why, who, where, when and how!
What – Your overriding company or promotional message?
Why – Why are you embarking on this project. Cite business objectives?
Who – Who is your audience?
Where – Where will your message be seen and read (location, device, context)?
When – Timing of the process to create and publish your content.
How – How should you present/structure the content?
Essentially the content plan is made up of these main points. During development you may wish to consult your business plan as this will detail your business model as well as obstacles and opportunities you may encounter and you'll need your strategy to align with your business goals.
There are a variety of distribution options available. Here are some of the most popular content formats;
If you haven't already noticed, you're currently reading a blog. Blog posts live on a website and should be published regularly in order to attract new visitors. Posts should provide valuable content for your audience that makes them inclined to share posts on social media and across other websites.
Ebooks are lead-generation tools that potential customers can download after submitting a lead form with their contact information. They're typically longer, more in-depth, and published less frequently than blog posts, which are written to attract visitors to a website.
Case Studies or testimonials, are your opportunity to tell the story of a customer who succeeded in solving a problem by working with you. Your goal in a case study is to show the people who are considering your product that the proof is in the pudding.
Videos are a highly engaging content medium that are shareable across social media platforms and websites alike. They require a bigger investment in time and resources than written content, but a video is 40x more likely to get shared on social media than other types of content.
Posting on social media, is pivotal to amplifying your brand's reach and delivering your content to your customers where you know they spend their time. Social networks on which businesses often post include:
Pinterest (often ignored, but excellent for SEO)
Publish your content
It’s time to publish your content, whoop! Your content plan along with your marketing plan should put you in a good position for the year.
Keep an eye on social media calendars for ideas on how to put some variety in your posts. This neat calendar below has plenty of ideas for 2020.
Happy content creation!