In the marketing industry today where content marketing is thriving, one vital component that companies must pay attention to is their content marketing strategy. By focusing on creating a solid content marketing strategy, the business is well on its way to a successful content marketing campaign.
A successful content marketing campaign provides every business with remarkable benefits that significantly boosts their performance and sales. Its long-term rewards also help develop the company’s image and credibility, resulting in an increased brand awareness.
Having said this, it is now evident why content marketing is important. To understand it better, we’ll have a more detailed look at content marketing strategy in this article, learn how to create one and why it’s a must for every business.
To figure out what is a content marketing strategy, let’s first define content marketing.
Content marketing is the process of advertising a brand, service, or product through the creation and distribution of content. Businesses can utilize different types of content, such as white paper, a simple blog post and a video content.
This being said, a content marketing strategy is a comprehensive approach that identifies and develops content aimed at reaching and capturing the target audiences, as well as generating significant results for businesses of all sizes. It also helps determine how best to improve the marketing performance of a company.
Having a solid content marketing strategy allows you to have a clear picture of what actions you need to take to reach your business goals. This enables you to measure marketing efforts that work and eliminate those that aren’t, which helps save time and resources in the long run.
Aside from this, developing a marketing strategy also provides a better chance of success than everyone who just wings it and hopes for the best. It provides you with the confidence that you will achieve your marketing goals since you’ve analyzed the data and applied the necessary marketing tactics. This is why having a content marketing strategy in place is extremely beneficial for your business.
Content marketing strategies vary from company to company. It will depend largely on the marketing goals and needs they have, and what marketing tactics they prefer to use to reach them. Even so, the purpose of a content marketing strategy remains unchanged, that is, to serve as a roadmap for businesses and content teams to follow in order to effectively reach their target audiences. Additionally, content strategies have a detailed process of creating content and distributing it, as well as the key performance indicators needed to measure the performance of every campaign.
Once the content marketing strategy is in place, the content teams need to start taking action. They also need to monitor their marketing efforts every once in a while in order to identify areas that are basically in need of improvement or changes.
As mentioned earlier, content marketing strategies can differ significantly among businesses, depending on their marketing objectives and activities. Despite this, there are some common effective steps you can take to create a successful content marketing strategy. To get you started, here are some of the steps you need to consider in order to ensure solid marketing efforts for your business.
“The trouble with not having a goal is that you can spend your life running up and down the field and never score.” –Bill Copeland
Jumping into different marketing tactics without having a goal in mind may not get your business anywhere. This is why just like any other marketing strategy, it is crucial to set your goals right away. Setting content marketing goals enables you to determine where to start and where to focus your efforts, hence you should also make sure your marketing goals are in line with the company’s overall objectives.
There are different goal setting frameworks that you can utilize to kickstart your process. Here are some of the most commonly used frameworks:
The goals you set should be SMART. Basically, SMART stands for specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-bound. This useful goal-setting structure enables you to set appropriate objectives for your business. Aside from this, it provides you clarity and focus in establishing and achieving your marketing goals as you are encouraged to set and meet deadlines.
OKRs, refers to Objectives and Key Results. In this method, the objectives will include clear goals, while the Key Results will include the numbers necessary to achieve those objectives. In essence, you need to set measurable, easily trackable goals so you can keep track of how close you are to achieving them.
The acronym CLEAR stands for collaborative, limited, emotional, appreciated and refinable. Developing marketing goals using this methodology enables you to create a framework that encourages teamwork and gives you room for improving your goals as new information or circumstances arise.
BSQ basically stands for big, small and quick. This goal-setting framework breaks down your goals. To begin with, this approach encourages you to Think Big by setting marketing goals that will greatly benefit your business. The next step is to Act Small by identifying every single action you need to take to reach your target. Finally, you need to Move Quickly to accomplish what needs to be done.
In both cases, setting up your goals clearly depends on your business and using these frameworks will make it easier for you to get started. And regardless of what you decide, the important thing is that your business sets relevant and attainable marketing goals for itself.
“If you want to create messages that resonate with your audience, you need to know what they care about.” –Nate Elliot
It’s understandable that your content could reach a large audience after it’s put out to the public, but knowing what your potential customers want will help you generate leads. Alongside this, identifying your target audiences will help you choose the right content channels for interacting with them. Then, you will be able to effectively deliver content that will keep them interested.
You can start by conducting market research. This can help you gather information about your audience, such as their age, gender, and lifestyle, which will enable you to better understand them. Market research also enables you to assess current market trends and needs, allowing you to identify demands that you can meet and do business with.
Simply put, it is essential to identify your target audiences so that you can reach them and provide them with effective content that can in turn increase your conversion rate.
After determining your target audiences, it’s time to identify which content channels will be effective in connecting with them. Content channels, also referred to as content distribution channels, are the places where you publish and promote your content. This can be done through social media, advertisements, forums, etc. There are generally three types of distribution channels for content, which will be covered below.
These are content distribution channels that you basically own, hence the name. Everything is under your control, from how everything works to when and how the content is displayed. Owned channels include websites, newsletters, social media pages, and blogs.
Earned media channels, also known as shared channels, are third-parties that distribute your content. Anyone who finds your posts interesting can do this, including customers and bloggers. They can share your content on social media, reference your guest posts, or discuss it on forums such as Reddit.
Pay channels, as the name implies, are channels through which you can pay for content distribution. This can include paid social media ads, such as Facebook and Instagram ads. Moreover, it can also be pay-per-click advertising, which typically comes under search engine marketing.
Once you decide where you will distribute your content, you should determine what types of content you will use to keep your target audiences engaged.
There are many different types of content, but in this section, we’ll only cover the most widely used these days.
Since most people use social media, you have a better shot of connecting with your potential customers when you use this type of content. You can easily qualify a well-crafted caption or post as a social media content, which makes it easier for you to produce write-ups that will easily reach and motivate your target audiences to take action.
It is a great opportunity to leverage video content now that it is more readily available through streaming media or video sharing platforms like YouTube. Valuable video content will keep your target audiences entertained and informed. Aside from this, consuming content is also easier for them since they’ll be watching videos instead of reading long articles.
Infographics are pieces of content that combine design and analysis. It is a highly shareable type of content because it offers a more visually appealing way to present data. Infographics are commonly used in the business sector or in education, but they can be utilized anywhere if done properly.
One of the most convenient ways to provide your content to your target audiences is through podcasts. Podcasts are a series of recordings that can be listened to or downloaded using streaming and podcasting applications. Every content marketer is making use of this type of content since it allows them to reach a wider audience and most of all, listeners find the content easy to digest.
Keep in mind that regardless of what you choose, it won’t be effective if you can’t reach your potential clients. This is why it is always important to consider your ideal audiences in the process of choosing which content formats and channels you should use in order to ensure the effectiveness of your content strategy plan.
Key performance indicators enable you to measure and track your marketing efforts, thus it is crucial to set them in the first place. It helps you understand how successful you are with your marketing campaigns and whether you’re on the right path to meeting your business goals.
When you’ve done all the groundwork and implemented a content marketing strategy, it’s important to monitor your performance. Keeping track of your performance allows you to identify which marketing tactics are working and which aren’t. In this way, you can make necessary adjustments to your marketing activities to ensure that you will still achieve your marketing objectives in the long run.
In general, these are the usual steps you can take to develop your content marketing strategy, and as already mentioned, it can always look different for every business. You can always adjust your plan based on what suits your business requirements and what will help you achieve your business goals.
To summarize, the business will greatly benefit from setting up a content marketing strategy. An effective content marketing strategy can help boost the overall marketing performance of every business and in the long run, it can also save their time and resources. Taking everything into account, it’s a no-brainer that businesses need a solid content marketing strategy. Generally speaking, it is crucial and it should not be overlooked.