Table of ContentWhat Is a Content Marketing Strategy?
What Makes a Content Marketing Strategy Important?
The Five Components of a Successful Content Marketing Plan
Steps to Developing a Full Content Strategy
Even while content marketing is becoming more and more popular, simply writing blogs and posting on social media is insufficient to have an effect on the bottom line.
You need to have a thorough and all-encompassing strategy if you want to achieve with content. In the end, it will enable you to draw in and keep the attention of a precisely targeted audience and ultimately produce valuable consumer action.
You may outline the fundamental stages required to create a strong content marketing plan for your company by referring to the in-depth instructions below.
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A strategy is a plan for how to arrive at your destination. What, then, does a content marketing plan actually entail? Let's distinguish it from a few terms used in the same industry:
- The implementation and distribution of your brand's content marketing assets are outlined in this high-level strategy for content marketing.
- A "content calendar" may also be used to describe the content plan. Your material implementation will be more neatly and efficiently organised with the aid of a content plan.
We discovered that 40% of organisations do not yet have a written plan. Why is it crucial to plan out and record your content marketing strategy, though?
It assists you in making the transition from haphazardly producing content to organising a system with clear objectives, quantifiable measures of success, and procedures for ongoing improvement.
Seventy-eight per cent of the 1,500 marketers we polled for our State of Content Marketing report who believed their content marketing strategy would be particularly effective in 2021 had their plan in writing.
The five key components of a successful content marketing strategy are audience personas, brand positioning, owned media value proposition, business case, and action plan. Let's look at why each of these components is important and how you may start using them.
1. Audience profiles
If you don't know to whom you are telling your tale, you can't really communicate the story of your brand. The audience you are trying to reach with your content should be identified as your first step. There are several methods for doing this:
- surveying your current clients
- investigate market trends
- Know who you're not aiming for.
- Keep a close eye on who your rivals are aiming for.
You should be able to tell all stakeholders and anybody involved in brand messaging who your audience is in a clear and concise manner.
Start by finding inspiration from these persona samples.
2. Setting Up Your Story and Brand
You can deliver a consistent experience for your audience and create the proper impression through all of your content marketing channels by having a clearly defined brand and product positioning.
You can get ideas for your market positioning by using the following questions:
- What are the objectives of my current and potential customers?
- Who are my main rivals, and what are their marketing strategies?
- What makes my brand special?
- What issues does my product assist in resolving?
- Why is it a superior option to those offered by my rivals?
Make the foundational elements of your brand story out of this information.
Your company's history, objective, purpose, and values are condensed into a brand story. It can assist you in deciding on the best approach for your content marketing strategy and in selecting the appropriate messaging and subject matter for your content.
Pay attention to the following factors:
- Your customer, the protagonist of your story, and their objectives and difficulties
- The character of your brand
- The goal of your brand and core brand principles
- How your services and content may support the aforementioned and give your hero more power
To finish this stage and keep track of your efforts, use this free brand narrative template. Small firms and startups that can take advantage of their distinctive backgrounds and identities may benefit the most from this step.
3. Mission Statement for Content Marketing and Owned Media Value Proposition
Define your owned media value proposition in order to promote your brand as a reliable content publisher. You'll be able to differentiate your content approach and compete more successfully. To achieve this, respond to the following inquiries:
- What special benefits do you offer your audience with your content?
- What makes you different from other content producers?
- Why should readers select your content channels to follow?
- Your content marketing mission statement is a crucial component of your approach. The purpose of your content creation should be outlined, along with details on who will profit from it.
Make sure the following components are in your content marketing mission statement:
- The target audience for whom you are developing your content and how it will assist them to accomplish those goals
- As an illustration, "Our content is where digital marketing managers obtain multimedia knowledge about SEO and content marketing so that they can support the organic growth of their organisations."
Goals for the business case and content marketing
A winning content strategy must include adding value for your audience. But content marketing should advance your company in addition to bringing in new readers and fans.
Determine the business objectives your organisation must meet and how content marketing will help your organisation get there. What outcomes do you hope to achieve with your content strategy, and how many resources will you need to dedicate to it?
You may better understand the advantages, disadvantages, and dangers of implementing a content marketing strategy in your firm by creating a business case for it. This will also help you persuade decision-makers of its value to the organisation.
5. Action Program
Finally, you will compile a list of your year's major content marketing initiatives and projects and include it in your content plan. Consider how they will accomplish the content marketing objectives you previously established for your company.
You will be able to consider each step of your content strategy by doing this. Include the following details, if possible:
- You should concentrate on high-level content initiatives and formats.
- channels for distributing and promoting material
- You must consider your previous content performance and further study your audience, which we'll cover later, in order to choose your ideal content formats and channels.
The key components of your content strategy are listed below. Let's now have a look at how you may design it and create powerful content step by step.
You can anticipate problems and spend resources wisely with long-term planning. You may create and implement a content strategy that is in line with your marketing and business objectives by outlining these seven steps.
You must keep a record of your plan, as was already explained. This might be a presentation in a Google document, a spreadsheet, a slide deck, or any format that is suitable for your business model and that can be quickly distributed to all significant stakeholders.
Step 1: Select the Audience and the Narrative You Want to Tell Through Your Content
Your target demographic is the ideal place to begin when developing any kind of marketing strategy.
Your content strategy will be built around your buyer personas, but your audience doesn't just consist of consumers. People who interact with your brand before they decide to buy are considered to be among your audience.
Delivering material that will interest your potential consumers before they begin the buying process is crucial.
Start by introducing them to the world that your brand has developed.
After that, send them content that clarifies how you can help them when they're ready to take action.
Additionally, developing a community of brand evangelists who will spread the word and support your thought leadership will help you become a useful resource.
In order to emphasise that it's all about providing value to your audiences rather than aggressively promoting your goods or services, we sometimes refer to these people as "reader personas."
The Map of Empathy
A collaborative tool that helps you comprehend your target audience more is the empathy map. This technique is explained by Alexander Osterwalder and Yves Pigneur in their book "Business Model Generation."
The empathy map is built on a thorough methodology: By adopting your customers' point of view, you may take a step back and enhance their experience depending on what they perceive, feel, see, or hear.
The Framework for "Jobs to Be Done"
Finding out what your clients need and why they would choose your brand is simple with the "Jobs to Be Done" approach. Your entire content marketing approach is immediately organised by it.
Put yourself in the prospect's position and determine the tasks your customer is attempting to do (what your customer seeks to accomplish in a given circumstance).
Try to finish the following sentence in the role of the prospect:
I want to do that so I can do it when I.
The issue facing your potential client is "When I___."
The answer is, "That's why I want ___," which you can provide them.
The prospect's need is "so I can ." (a state or a result they want to achieve).
For instance: I spend too much time at work finishing all of my tasks, so I'm looking for a tool to help me organise my time better so I can spend more time with my family.
In this instance, the consumer purchases "more time with family" but you are selling "a tool to better time management."
Remember that your potential customers aren't seeking your product and content to solve their problems; they're looking to better their personal or professional life.
You may develop intriguing content that can turn prospects from strangers into your brand's ardent supporters once you have a clear grasp of their current issue, the remedy they require, and the outcome they hope to achieve.
Step 2: Examine past content performance to determine your content marketing objectives.
To determine your content marketing goals, proceed as follows:
- Consider your company's high-level business and marketing goals by panning them out. For instance, you might want to establish yourself as a go-to resource for time management tips and set a specific income target for your marketing efforts this year.
- Think about how content may assist in achieving these more general objectives, which are typically unique to your company.
- Decide which content marketing KPIs are important to you. How will success be represented numerically? Always establish a specific success metric for each piece of content you intend to produce.
These metrics could be the main ones, like the number of leads generated or the revenue from content marketing. Others, including organic traffic, ranking, and shares, may be secondary.
Analyze your analytics dashboards (such as those in Google Analytics) and look at how your content has been performing in relation to those objectives to create a benchmark.
Keep in mind that there are only so many resources on the earth. Your objectives and goals are tightly correlated with your team's and budget's capacity. Therefore, be sure to keep this in mind while you set your goals.
According to our analysis, the major objectives of content marketing in 2022 will still be brand awareness, visitor generation, and lead generation.
However, we advise you to constantly consider the big picture and consider content marketing as a crucial component of your overall marketing plan. A general objective maybe something like this: "In 2022, we hope to generate 15,000 MQLs with a budget of $30,000 and achieve a 20% increase in income created by organic content."
Pro tip: When establishing your content strategy goals, consider the buyer's journey. For instance, the sales cycle in B2B is frequently substantially longer than in B2C. Therefore, multitouch attribution would be preferable for evaluating the effectiveness of your material and establishing your KPIs (key performance indicators).
To learn about different goal-setting frameworks that can assist you with this step, continue reading.
Step 3: Examine Your Current Content
A content audit is essentially a method for classifying, evaluating, and enhancing your current material. It can assist you in making the most of your current pages while possibly conserving resources.
It's also crucial to comprehend better what kinds of material, including topics and formats, connect with your audience.
In 2021, 65% of businesses with very successful content marketing conducted content audits at least twice a year, according to our research. A content audit has many advantages, including increasing engagement, generating more organic traffic, and ranking higher.
Utilizing the audit, respond to the following queries:
- Which keywords and content topics appear to be most effective?
- Which formats lead to the highest levels of interaction and conversions?
- Which television networks are the most popular?
Step 4: Create a high-level editorial plan and content calendar
By planning your content, you may properly deploy your resources, identify workflows that are taking longer than anticipated, and change your expectations.
Prioritization is a crucial component of effective planning.
The most important activities or things that you can test quickly can be determined if your actions are planned.
Set Priorities for Your Work
By doing this, you guard your plan against catastrophic failures and look for possibilities for trials that might improve your outcomes.
There are several methods you might decide how to prioritise, including:
- Possible benefits
- The campaign flow that you are developing
- What materials you'll require to develop your campaigns
- launch of a product or service
You may then choose which campaigns, topics, and formats should appear first in your strategy based on that information.
Step 5: Develop Your Content
Everything, including your drive to produce more and rank higher quickly, should come after the calibre of your content. To help you generate engaging content that connects with your audience, use the following tactics.
Put Originality First
The audience you are trying to reach is very unlikely to be interested in your content if it isn't original, which is a harsh truth but one that should be acknowledged. Your greatest bet is to invest in the people and tools that can assist you in conducting original research, developing novel ideas, and turning those ideas into really alluring content.
Avert posting articles that are solely based on your evaluation of other pages on the same subject. Go one step further and try to incorporate your particular expertise, information, analysis, and viewpoint into every piece of writing. By establishing reputation and trust with your audience, you'll provide the groundwork for organic development.
This is particularly true for specialised YMYL (Your Money, Your Life) industries like law, real estate, healthcare, and finance.