Content Marketing is an important task for any organization, especially for the small team of people working on the ‘content’ team. Everyone has their specialty but is your content team working together to make the most of the content you develop? Do you have a clear content strategy, and have you mapped it against your marketing and business goals?
Below we will share with you 5 steps to grow your business with a targeted content marketing strategy.
Step 1 – Develop a Plan
Before we pull up a chair to the strategy table, we need to be sure to address some basic groundwork.
- What are your business goals?
- Who is your target audience? Who will be interacting with your content?
- How is your content helping them?
- What are the objectives of your content marketing?
- What type of content (video, podcast, webinar, blog post, infographic) do you create?
- How often will you publish this content?
- How will you manage content creation?
- What channels will you use to distribute this content?
All burning questions but they need to be answered if your content marketing strategy is going to deliver on your KPIs.
With any strategy, you need to ensure it is measurable. If you don’t measure it, you can’t manage it. Your higher ups are going to want KPIs that deliver on revenue, sales, conversions. Likes and comments are nice and help build brand awareness but in this era of COVID and economic uncertainty you need to deliver revenue generating results.
By developing a plan, you have developed a measurable means to achieve your marketing and business goals. Knowing which channels and types of content you will develop will provide focus to only develop content you have planned to create. Some typical examples include:
- Blog posts (Establish subject matter expertise and drive website traffic)
- Newsletter/Email (Distribute relevant content to share with target audience to remain top-of-mind)
- Video (Develop a video if a member of your team is proficient in making it look good)
- Webinar (Share content with your target audience with pre-registration)
- Social Media (Maintain presence on social media channels – don’t let them go dormant)
Step 2 – Create a Content Calendar
Obviously before you create a content calendar you need to determine amongst your team the type of content you will develop on a regular (measurable cadence) basis. Once you have decided the types of content you need to build a calendar – minimum a month in advance – but ideally a quarter out so you can plan accordingly. A content calendar is not a magical document and can be as simple or as complicated as you want it to be. The purpose of a content calendar is to simply allow you to stay organized and on track as developing content is only one of several hats you wear.
Step 3 – Create Original Content
Sure, retweets and article shares are nice, but your target audience is looking for content to help them navigate their challenging jobs and lives. Your brand is unique and so is your expertise. Remember, your perspective is your own, share that through the lens that uses your own voice. No one likes a knock-off so give them the good stuff and establish a distribution cadence that your audience can count on.
As you get into a rhythm of developing your original content you can refine your process over time and make it easier to develop. Perfect practice makes perfect, same applies to content development. When you hit a wall about the next type of content to develop, simply ask your audience. Post a poll on social media, email a survey, etc. – they will be glad to be a part of the process and you’ll get some good ideas you wouldn’t have found otherwise.
Step 4 – Distribute Content
Now that you have your plan in place and KPIs outlined and target audience identified – it’s time to share your content. Your content calendar is your guide as to the cadence of the content you share so make sure you stick to that plan. Post your blog post the same time each month, send out our newsletter the same time each month, etc. Establishing a regular schedule will keep you and your team focused and in rhythm to make sure your content goes out on time.
Step 5 – Measure Results
This is the part you’ve been waiting for – did our content strategy deliver on the goals and KPIs we set out to accomplish? Google Analytics and Google Data Studio are great tools to measure your content marketing efforts from your website and other channels. You can use native reporting within your social media channels or have them feed into another data aggregator to provide you with a more comprehensive report.
For help with your content marketing efforts – Anvil can help. Email Mike Terry at mike @ anvilmedia.com to set up an introductory phone call.