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A lot of businesses do content marketing but not every business understands the content marketing strategy to make it work or do it correctly. Every business is quite dynamic and stylishly unique in its own ways. Some businesses may have closely related but different marketing and individual goals. However, having similar goals with a given company doesn’t guarantee that your own company can thrive on a single content marketing strategy. Your business’s content marketing strategy needs to be built on a documented strategy to clearly guide and ease your content marketing efforts.
Content marketing is the way content marketers draw and develop their larger story. This is the story that an organisation aims to communicate to its clients. The brand/business story needs to be told in a way that aligns with the organisational goals. The content then focuses on ways to engage an audience and to drive profitable client behaviours.
Actionable Steps to Create a Working Content Marketing Strategy
The followings are actionable steps you can follow. Use them as a yardstick in creating a working content marketing strategy for your business to maximise productivity;
1. Know and Understand your Customers
It is very important to know and understand your ideal customers. Your content marketing efforts are certainly destined to fail when you fail to understand your audience and their common demands, problems and what they are passionate about. You can’t be expecting success from content marketing strategy designed for government or corporations while your ideal customers are individuals. In addition to this, understanding your buyers’ persona and their buying cycle can greatly make your content marketing strategy more focused and targeted.
2. Create more engaging and value-driven contents
After you’d successfully bridged the gap between who and what your audience want, you need to provide quality and result-oriented contents. This should be strictly content that your ideal customers want to read. Your readers have probably read tons of articles before stumbling on yours. You need to captivate them with words, visuals, and values in your contents. You need to provide top-notch contents that will make you stand out. This should resonate your commitment in helping the readers get more value. You can use research tools like Google Keyword Planner, Google search, Keywordtool.io, SEMrush, or Moz for phrases of what users are searching for. Optimise your contents around few important key phrases suggested by these tools.
Note, the above-named tools may not work for you if you choose not to use your own creativity. Creativity is a powerful content marketing tool, hone it and blend it into your plan and strategy. Show your expertise in solving their problems. Simplicity in your choice of words is a critical factor. You’re communicating not a debating.
3. MediaChoice and Publication Format
Quality information is gold. You and your team have dedicated resources — time, money, manpower etc. — in providing the best contents. Some subjects might be too hard to explain in few paragraphs while some are too boring to explain in a lengthy epistle full of cloaks. Choosing the right format for your publication is very crucial in content marketing. Your customers’ behaviour profile can give you the best possible clues on where your ideal customers consume your contents and the possible impacts the repurposed content will have on your marketing plan.
You can publish a well-detailed article or blog post and blew everything with a poor visual publication which failed to complement the original source. Your business or company credibility may suffer from this type of malfunction. If an E-book or a whitepaper will be the best choice to present the subject, don’t choose social media or email as the publication, vice versa.
4. Editorial Calendar
An editorial calendar is an effective tool that can inculcate discipline and help you efficiently manage your time and resources. Sometimes, we get consumed with administrative works to keep a clear track of the contents. Your content marketing demands fresh and juicy content to keep the fire burning. It’s an on-going concern project. Editorial calendar ensures a continual flowing of relevant and updated informational resources for your content marketing plans.
In order to be successful and remain successful with content marketing strategy, you need a well-structured plan to keep you focused and disciplined in delivering blog posts, podcasts, white papers and other contents to keep your business targets refreshed and delighted.
5. Readjustment and Optimisation
Understanding what’s working and what’s not working for your content marketing campaigns is very important. Occasional measurement of your marketing goals and objectives will give you and your business a glimpse of where the company is heading to, what needs to be eliminated and what needs to be improved for a more rewarding result.
Reviewing the necessary data and analytics information of your website’s contents can be the best practical strategy to understand your content performances.
How to Measure Your Content Marketing Strategy Efforts
According to Ayat Shukairy, a presenter at the Content Marketing World 2016 in Cleveland, she shared some of the best tips on how to measure your content marketing efforts by “starting with key questions about your content to drive insights and action.” Consider the following:
– Which pages bring the most visitors to your site?
– What content works for visitors?
– What content works for search engines?
– Is your content generating engagement? Getting visitors to take action?
– Which pages have high or low on-page time?
More sophisticated analysis of website data such as the number of backlinks, social shares, comments and mentions can be used as a yardstick in measuring the popularity and relevance of your contents.
While content marketing sounds achievable by every business, its success firmly depends on a well-defined and working content marketing strategy that complements your overall business and marketing goals. Finding a content marketing strategy that works perfectly for your organisation can sometimes be hard, very hard in fact. But, we will be experimenting other strategies you can incorporate into your content marketing programs.
So, use the above guide to set your business and marketing priorities right to avoid a frustrating content marketing that may hurt your efforts.
This is written as a guest post by Abdullahi Salaudeen. He is a professional freelance writer and a content marketer. A result-oriented, passionate and dedicated fellow who advocates simplicity, values and creativity. He helps businesses and individuals accomplish their goals using working strategies and creative words.