Content marketing has evolved into a full-blown sector of its own. No brand can afford to neglect the power of content. It should come as no surprise that over 70% of businesses are actively investing in content today. But this rapidly scaling sector has created a super-saturated market with millions of blogs being released every year. Most brands’ marketing efforts get drowned out in the cacophony due to a lack of clear-cut purpose and planning. In fact, over 63% of all businesses lack a documented content strategy. This ends up hurting their margins with no measurable impact. Moreover, the lack of documentation can overwhelm your efforts and dilute the benefits of putting out content.
On the other hand, having a content strategy can help you keep a tab on all your channels and the results they’re generating. By codifying the strategy, you can identify the right opportunities to diversify your content marketing approach. And also minimize non-performing assets.
How to create the most effective content marketing strategy?
A content strategy refers to the details you outline to manage all your tangible content. Content marketing allows you to demonstrate and establish your industry expertise by adding value to your customers’ lives.
Typically, a content marketing plan must include the reasons you’re creating content for, how you’ll reach your audience through that content, and how it’ll impact your business positively.
Here are the 5 key steps to creating a content strategy for your business.
1. Your Mission and Vision
Not all content marketing plans are created equal. By simply following a content strategy template, you’ll be doing your business a disservice. It’s necessary to identify the different aspects of your business and understand how good content will help elevate them.
Since each business adopts different marketing models, every brand needs to analyze its current position. What channels do you currently exist on? How effective is your current game plan for those channels? What new channels do you think are important?
Answering these questions will help you create the perfect vision for your content strategy.
Additionally, how will your content help the audience and in turn create revenue for the company? This answer needs to be crystallized in the mission statement.
Having a strong vision and mission can help you create overarching long-term goals for your content plan.
2. Your Game Plan
The entire point of creating a content marketing strategy is to lay down a plan to effectively utilize content to help both sides of the spectrum – your business as well as your audience.
Your game plan can be divided into three sections –
- How will you establish your presence and authority?
- How will you add value to your customers’ lives?
- How will you help your business achieve its monetary goals?
Your game plan should be able to utilize your usp to display the dominance of your brand in a way that convinces readers to become paying customers.
3. Mapping Your Content Plan to Your Audience
No content plan can be successful without reading into the audience’s needs and wants. This part of your strategy should contain information about audience segmentation, audience personas, positioning, and value proposition.
You can also create a content funnel to guide your aid your customers’ through their buying journey, gently guiding them towards the shopping cart. Your content should be relevant to the stage your audience currently is in. For instance, blogs and articles are top-of-the-funnel content while guidebooks are for the bottom.
4. Brand Story and Brand Message
As already established, every brand is unique. Thus, your company is built on the back of a completely different story than your competitors. Capitalizing on this difference can help you rake in new customers who resonate with your brand’s story.
Your brand voice and tone should match the story as well as create a brand image that goes well with your products.
Define your brand story in your marketing plan to streamline all your content according to the same values and agenda.
5. Pick The Channels
Picking the right channels to distribute your content is much more difficult than it sounds. Posting on the wrong platform will alienate you from your audience while posting on every platform will dilute your efforts. An effective strategy is to explore channels where your customers already exist. If you’re a cosmetics brand, then Instagram, Tik-Tok, and Facebook will help you drive customers. Whereas for a SaaS company Tik-Tok might be a futile investment.
Document the channels that you want to target and attach the reasons for choosing them in your content marketing strategy.
Developing a content strategy should be the first task on your checklist for marketing. There’s no such thing as a perfect content marketing plan. The digital space is dynamic and devoid of any rigidity. Your plan needs to be evaluated and updated periodically to match your audience’s needs and your business goals.