Do You Need A Content Strategy?
Today, every business that is poised for real growth understands the importance of content. Content has become a significant need for business survival and growth, especially if your company is dealing with a field that's filled with different competitors. You want your products or services to stand out from the rest. You want to have a distinct brand perception. All of that requires some work.
Content marketing helps your businesses to develop reliable and cost-effective sources of website traffic and generate new leads. Picture it as your advertising efforts. All content creation strategies are geared towards advertising. But not all advertising stem from a content strategy. An advertising effort that follows a good content strategy is capable of bringing in more customers than one which is merely random and uncalculated. Without a proper content strategy in place, it might be hard to keep your market share - unless, of course, luck shines on you.
Should you work on a content strategy yourself or hire it out to others? Content marketing takes a lot of work so if you do it yourself beware of a lot of time you will have to spend putting together creatives. If you are time strapped, you can find a quality content marketing agency. Here are some content marketing agency reviews that can help.
What is content strategy?
Content strategy involves the management of every publicity media that belongs to your business: marketing drives, social media posts, YouTube channel, email subscribers list, and so on. It is that part of your marketing plan that continuously demonstrates who you are and the expertise you bring to your industry.
Many businesses, especially small businesses, struggle quite often to keep their content marketing strategy on track. Perhaps because of the constantly-changing trends in social media, influencer marketing, and other marketing channels or the discipline and expertise needed to develop a winning strategy and implement it. However, as marketing evolves into a more dynamic, targeted, data-centric field, it’s more important than ever to ensure that your content is compelling.
Staying visible and connected to the need of your audience is crucial, and that depends a lot on how you push out your content. The platforms you engage in the same matter too. And that's where your need for an experienced content strategist becomes non-negotiable—as with every other aspect of business practice, having an effective content marketing plan is critical to your success. In other words, your content strategy needs to be healthy and irresistible.
According to recent research, content education is fast becoming a must-have for entrepreneurs and companies. So, in essence, a winning content strategy goes beyond just tweets, blogs, and social media posts. In this article, you'll see the essential skills that will help transform your content strategy.
Understand Your Target Audience
There's no better place to begin than from your customer's perspectives. Creating compelling content is partly dependent on a solid understanding of who is at the other end. Another way of looking at this is deciding who you want to reach and understanding what they need. That's how you keep your content strategy targeted and relevant. Do you know what they want? What type of information draws their attention? Where can you teach them? How much do you know about them? These are essential questions that must be answered to get a more precise picture of your market. Otherwise, your efforts will simply be like pouring water on a rock.
Three important things to note:
Keep a note of customers’ feedback. Don't just post, ask for their feedback, criticism, and suggestions. After all, your business is about satisfying their needs. Your customers will also understand that their voice matters.
Collect key Insights on customers' demographics. Depending on the platform you use, you can collect information that will help you know the key characteristics of the people you're dealing with. For example, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter allow you to see the insights on every post you make. This is an effective way of seeing who your audience is.
Buy customer persona - A buyer persona describes your ideal readers and customers so that you can target content better. This is also known as customer avatars.
In the end, you're way better off with this information. Just posting content is like shooting sporadically into the air without aim. Understanding your audience will guide you through creating productive and targeted material.
Set Your Goals And Develop an A KPI
It is essential to have a mission statement. This is a brief documented statement that makes it easier for your business to focus on what’s necessary and shifts focus away from what’s not – in creating your content. This is so your content marketing strategy stays on track. Knowing where you've headed works as a method to ensure you stay in line. And this is very important because your time, resources, and effort will only focus on the right audience. Your productivity is bound to go notches higher. However, you should also position your business to gain from your efforts, and this should reflect your goals. Some examples are:
- Growing your clientele base
- Improving revenue from your content marketing strategy
- Making more sales and getting high-quality leads
- Advanced SEO for driving more traffic to your site
- Improving the perception of your brand
- Active social media engagement
Next is establishing your key performance indicators (KPI), based on the mission and goals you've set. This is more like an audit system to measure the impact of the effectiveness of your content strategy. You want to know:
- How many new email subscribers you have each month
- How well your page is ranking on search engines, resulting in pages (SERPs)
- How many feedbacks you get from your social media posts
- How much it costs to generate leads
- Is your SEO metrics growing and how much traffic comes to your website
- Which campaign works the most
You’ll also want to keep an eye on marketing expenditure and tracking your spending on different campaigns.
Decide On What Content Types To Create
As time goes on, you'll soon figure out which media works best for you. The truth is, some may not perform as best as the others. So you'll have to single out the channels that give you the most results and expand from there. Doing everything at a time might be cumbersome, even if you hire an expert. In the long run, you'll be able to manage your resources better.
For instance, if you get better leads from Instagram ads than Google ads. You might want to focus more resources on Instagram ads, and maybe grow your website organically. After figuring out where your audience usually hangs out, you'll need to stay on the strategies that work best for them. Is it tutorial videos, comedy skits, or articles? From your previous posts, you'll understand which ones produce more engagement.
But to achieve better results, you may want to use some tools for these analyses. Google analytics and Buzzsumo come in handy here. You'll get a picture of which posts performed better, and on which platform. At this point, you may want to hire a content writer and a content strategist. This leads to the next points.
Invest in Your Content Creators
Doing everything alone could be overwhelming. So, it’s essential to have a reliable team of experts backing you up here. Having a strong team will allow for a seamless workflow - even if one person is not in the picture. It also helps to create a more cohesive voice throughout your content. There won't be any disconnect in tone, direction, or quality. Build a rapport with your content creators. This ensures they understand both your brand voice and goals, whether they are internal or outsourced. The more invested they are in your mission, the better the content will be. You'll need people who can create content that best showcases your brand, allocate resources as appropriate, and you should be willing to listen to their ideas.
To get the most amount of content out there which will yield the most traffic and results, it’s always a good idea to consider a content marketing agency. This can help tremendously and build traction quickly.
Use an Editorial Calendar
To achieve the best and monitor performance per time, you'll need to create a calendar that states when each new content is to be published. You can't afford to be random. You can decide to type in a spreadsheet or use a plug-in for your CMS. Do not underestimate the impact of a good editorial calendar - it can focus your content goals and help you achieve them. Keep a list of relevant topics and the best medium for delivering the contents.
Also, try and prepare the materials ahead of time. You'll have greater control this way. Be sure to include multiple formats, such as infographics, social media campaigns, blogs, videos, interesting articles, press releases, conferences, live videos, and more. An editorial calendar will help you plan out all of this. Also, avoid focusing on too many details. Topics can be tweaked from time to time to suit trends in your industry, and formats can be changed or combined do long as it works best for your audience.
You need to know what’s going on in your industry, share the info with your audience, and be creative about it. Try a webinar or go live on Instagram or Facebook. Do giveaways if you can. Create a quiz or contest and attach prizes to them. Trying new stuff teaches you what will work and what won't. If you come across new challenges that match your brand voice, try them. Always keep a fresh mindset; you never know which piece of content will go viral.
Create More Content!
You'll by now know exactly what to do and how to do them. You already know where your customers are and how to reach them with your business. Enough talk already. Get to work. A great content strategy depends on quality content. Be creative, try fresh ideas, and be deliberate about pushing out your brand.