How can you get started creating a content marketing strategy to maximize your marketing campaign? Content marketing is a vital digital asset that provides several growth opportunities for your business.
It helps you build awareness for your brand, build your online reputation and improve your bottom line.
But according to recent data by Content Marketing Institute, only 42% of marketers documented their content plan. And 60% of those who recorded their content marketing strategies were most successful.
It shows why your business needs a strategy for content marketing to complement your effort. But in another report, the biggest challenge facing 64% of B2B marketers is creating a content marketing strategy for their business.
Therefore, if you’re struggling to develop a plan for your business to strengthen your marketing mix, this article is for you. But what is a content marketing strategy?
What Is a Content Marketing Strategy?
A content marketing strategy is a developed scheme or plan for using various marketing content to meet your business objectives. A results-driven content plan will help you fascinate your buyer persona at each stage of their journey.
So, it’s crucial to create a content strategy framework to help you engage your readers and prospects – and possibly convert them into customers.
Five Proven Ways to Create an Effective Content Marketing Strategy
Creating a strategy for content marketing lets you focus on reaching your business goals. It helps you allocate resources more efficiently and drive results. Here’s how to produce and implement a sustained content marketing plan.
1. Audit Your Existing Content Before Creating a Content Marketing Strategy
Before creating a content strategy for your business, you must audit existing blogs on your site. Conducting content audits is vital because it helps you see what’s performing best and those losing traction.
It shows you where there are content gaps and how to rectify them. Besides, with tons of content published daily on the web, users have an overwhelming mass of information at their disposal.
But auditing your existing blog content lets you gather valuable details to produce content that stands out from the pack. Therefore, use your preferred tool to analyze your blog to understand the state of your content marketing effort.
Google Analytics is one of the first that comes to mind. This software reveals how your target readers interact with your posts. It also shows you blog posts that bring the most traffic to your site. The data will help you make informed marketing decisions, identify gaps in content, and find new brilliant content ideas.
2. Define Your Content Marketing Goal
It’s essential to define your goals before planning how to meet them. This approach gives you plenty of time to decide what’s best for your content strategy plan. Thus, define your purpose of content creation and the reason for developing a content strategy framework.
A transparent strategy framework guarantees that each blog content aligns with your overall brand vision and mission statement. It helps you concentrate on creating the most important content for your blog.
Moreover, your content marketing objective lets you arrange content for publishing in a hierarchical manner that connects with other posts. As a result, your marketing content strategy will stay relevant for the longest.
And while setting long-term goals is a fantastic starting point, it would help if you start with short-term aspirations that lead to your long-term objectives. However, ensure that your goals relate to your overall brand vision.
Some standard marketing goals include:
- Increase SERPs ranking position
- Drive more organic traffic with effective marketing
- Increase brand and product awareness
- Reduce churn and improve consumer lifetime value
- Generate more sales and revenue
However, you may want to establish the traditional Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-Bound (SMART) objectives, which is excellent. But note that the CLEAR goal process is more yielding.
SMART and CLEAR Goal-Setting Characteristics
According to Kreek Speak Solutions, the CLEAR goal-setting framework is your best consideration for establishing your aims. Why? Because it’s more flexible and has the primary elements for a realistic benchmark.
The CLEAR structure provides flexibility, a much-needed trait in the ever-evolving digital marketing niche. So, the CLEAR approach is ideal since it lets you assess your aims based on its primary features. You can read more about the CLEAR goal-setting structure and characteristics here.
3. Research to Understand Your Audience Persona
Why should you care about audience research? Researching your buyer persona helps you to know and serve them better. It means that to create a successful marketing plan, you must define who you want to attract to your business.
That way, you will know your audience’s primary challenge and provide solutions via content marketing. You will produce actionable blog content that is helpful to your readers—making you their go-to resource for valuable information.
Such marketing content can convert readers into leads and customers since it answers consumers’ questions. This step is vital for both newbie and seasoned marketers.
For instance, you need to find a group of people to sell your business if you’re a new marketer. For an experienced marketer, you already have a target market. But you may want to sell to a new consumer segment to increase revenue.
You need to conduct market research to find your target buyer in both cases. Thus, audience analysis enables you to answer a series of questions, such as:
- What are their interests?
- What content format excites them? (More on types of content below)
- Who or what influences your readers?
- What are their pressing problems?
- How do they feel about your brand and services?
Understanding your audience persona helps you develop a content marketing strategy that addresses those questions. To get insights about your audience, access Google Analytics and go to Audience >> Interests >> Overview. You will see your audience’s information.
4. Choose What Content Types to Produce
You have various content options to create, including written and visual materials. However, your content marketing strategy may or may not include all the most famous content assets.
But it must accommodate blog post writing and publishing. Why? Because according to recent blogging statistics, blog posts attract over 90% more inbound links than other content formats. Also, consistently creating blog articles around topics within your content strategy will build your online authority and blog popularity. However, your blog posts must be:
- Well-written and structured
- Helpful to the reader
- Optimized for SEO
So, based on the audience research conducted earlier, use the data to inform your content creation strategy. For example, if data shows a group of your readers love video content, repurpose your best-performing blog articles into video materials.
And if the insights reveal that a segment wants audio content, repurpose to podcasts or create new audio content. The idea is to give your target market what they demand from you to build trust and credibility.
Please, read this post to see some of the best-known content assets you can produce to move your readers through the buyer circle.
5. Choose the Best Channels for Content Distribution
Now that you have started publishing blog content, you need to distribute the materials to the proper channels for optimal ROIs. So, pick the best content distribution channels where your audience hangs out.
This process requires a bit of research. Instead of guesswork, analyze your followers to know the platforms where they’re interacting with your posts. One of the best ways to be sure is via BuzzSumo. Go to BuzzSumo and enter your domain name.
It will show you social sites where your content gets the most shares. Alternatively, you can go back and use Google Analytics. The web analytics tool has several valuable pieces of data to explore.
So, on Google Analytics, navigate to Acquisition, >> scroll down to Social, and click >> Overview. The report shows you the primary social media channels where users share your posts.
Establish your presence on those networking sites with more social interactions and start posting. But ensure to post relevant content only.
Are You Ready to Create a Content Marketing Strategy to Help Grow Your Business?
While we could not cover every part of the content marketing strategy processes, the above steps will drive results for your business. Also, don’t forget to create an editorial content plan, set measurable KPIs – and evaluate your content marketing performance.
Developing a sustained content strategy for your marketing mix is not rocket science. Apply the steps above and comment below about how they work!