The Basics of Any Content Marketing Strategy
So, what is it that you need for a content marketing strategy – apart from great content?
You need to be absolutely clear about your perspective: Why are you engaging in content marketing? What do you want to achieve? Your goals will have a huge impact on the all the other parts of your content marketing strategy. You will use different content depending on your goals, you will need to choose different distribution channels depending on your goals. You can only define a targeted content marketing strategy if you know where you are headed – and you can only see if you are getting any closer to reaching your goals if you have any.
- Your target audience
Who is your target audience? Who do you want to reach with your content? The more you know about your target group, the better can you target your content marketing at them: Choose content formats your target group likes. Choose topics your target group is interested in. And choose distribution channels where your target audience is active, and you can connect to them.
- Your Story
If you choose content marketing as your way to go, you have to be absolutely clear that you need a ton of content. And this content will have to be filled with stories. The story you tell is not so much about the features of your produce. It may well include success stories of your customers using your products – but even that should only be a small part of the stories you tell.
Your story can include the background story why you started your company, how you hired your team or got to know your co-founder.
Why shouldn’t it be all about dry facts? Because a story helps to make you human, it can engage your audience and build trust – and it will help to stick with people’s memories when dry facts are long forgotten.
Before you start, make sure you are clear about the time frame and the schedule you set. How much content do you need at what times and is that realistic?
Especially when you are starting out and your audience does not know you, you need to stay on their radar with more and more content. Once you have a loyal audience, you may be able to uphold your drive with a slightly looser schedule for new content.
- Content and content formats
Content and content formats are what most people think about when they think about engaging in content marketing. But apart from the need for great content, this is not static. You can always try different content formats or some new type content and topics and measure how it speaks to your audience.
You need to keep in mind that you do not simply need ONE piece of outstanding content. For successful content marketing, you need to be able to produce a constant stream of great content. That needs to be considered when you decide on the content and content formats.
The content formats also strongly influence the distribution channels that you can use – or the other way round. If you want to distribute your content via some of the visual social networks you need visual content.
- Do not give up to early
I have seen entrepreneurs stating that content marketing (or social media marketing) does not work for them after poking around without a clear content marketing strategy and no clue about getting it right for a few days or weeks.
Let me finish this article with a word of warning: Content marketing success is not just for everyone to grab and be content with. Content marketing needs persistence and often hard work before you can reap the results. Far too many people plan too short sighted and get frustrated too early. And while you should watch your numbers and be willing to adjust everything you do based on your results, giving up too early should not be an option.