Content marketing is an excellent way to get individuals talking about your services, products, and brand in general. What’s more, content marketing is a fantastic way to promote engagement with your clients and perhaps also establish a community.
Such is the significance of content marketing for businesses that it makes it a necessity for the modern-day business to invest and commit towards a unique content marketing plan. According to various studies, content marketing builds solid and trusting relationships with both the existing and potential customers. In fact, about 80 % of customers are bound to trust your business more if you incorporate customized content.
The best way to reap the benefits of content marketing is to create a unique content marketing plan as it will afford you the necessary tools to keep your distinct content strategy on course as well as build trust with your customers.
However, what if you are new to the world of content marketing? Where exactly should you begin? To guide you through it below is a detailed guide to creating your first content marketing strategy, the steps, and what to take into account. Before we start, though, we must understand the concept of content marketing strategy. So, precisely what is it?
What is a content marketing strategy?
Ideally, a content marketing strategy represents the roadmap that informs you of what you are going to build, as well as how you will create it, and distribute it. Also, it highlights how you will utilize it to entice, retain, and convert your audience into actual clients.
To ensure that you create a truly unique marketing strategy, you should write the content yourself. Numerous businesses want to incorporate a content marketing strategy that is inclusive of influencer marketing but can’t do so since they either don’t have the time or simply can’t write.
Luckily, if you are in such a dilemma, you can always seek for professional writers to do it for you. But is it effective? Well, just like with college where many unsure students keep asking ‘can you pay someone to write your essay?’ the same goes for content marketing strategy writing. Nonetheless, the truth is that using professional writers is undeniably effective, as it not only affords you professionalism, and quality, but it also saves you a lot of time.
But back to creating your content marketing plan, all sections of your content marketing boast their own details and nuances which you need not miss. Therefore, let’s have a look at the steps you need to create a good plan and what it actually entails.
Five steps to creating a strategic content marketing plan:
1. Set Your Goals: What is the content for?
Before anything else, you must ask yourself what the purpose of the content is. Accordingly, it would help if you created realistic goals based on how you answer the above question. Your goals must be both measurable and realistic. For instance, as opposed to stating that you want to maintain a good relationship with your clients through the mail, you can set a much more realistic goal to have 150 new email sign-ups annually by producing better quality newsletters.
Furthermore, your content must support your business objectives, mainly if you utilize practice inbound-marketing that is centered on content creation.
2. Identify what you’re selling and to whom you are selling to.
While you are perfectly aware of what services and products your business provides, do you, however, know who you are selling them to? Primarily, identifying your target audience will help you create appropriate content to market your service or product to them. Once you know what you are selling, it is easier to frame the type of content needed to sell it. Usually, this step takes some research, where you first create some profiles of your ideal purchasers, called customer personas.
After you have assessed who your audience actually is, you must ask yourself one vital question: How will you help them? The key to this particular step is mapping out your customer personas’ goals, pain points, as well as desires to the solutions you are offering. It may take the form of a table with some brief descriptions of all these factors, or it may be something you would instead write in story format.
This step is vital since the rest of this approach will be about creation, improvement, and promotion of content that solves the issues your product seeks to resolve.
3. Get familiar with your competition.
Typically, knowing what type of content your audience wants is good. However, it is even better if you took the time to understand what type of content your competitors are already offering the customers. In essence, there is much more available content for your potential customers than they can consume, and some of this content is from your competitors. As such, it can actually guide you in creating proper content.
By knowing more about your competitors as well as the content they produce, you get an idea of what is already on offer to the prospects, and you can subsequently identify what you need to change to stand out.
4. Take inventory.
Most probably, you already have existing content that can serve as a guide for your future content. Accordingly, doing a content audit can assist you in identifying not just what you have already, but also what you require.
Ensure that you include all that you have created, notwithstanding how old it is. For every piece, you must ask yourself what topic you are covering, the type of material it is (article, video, etc.), and its location. Also, you must ask how you can access it, as well as how valuable it is to your prospects as per your customer personas. Afterward, determine the type of content you must create and the materials you already have, which needs updating as per your assessment.
5. Get organized.
An editorial calendar can help keep your content marketing plan on track, especially if you are creating content in-house. What this calendar does is to outline what you are creating, the creator, when the material will be published, as well as how, the content will be promoted.
Creating a great content marketer isn’t as complicated as it sounds. However, it does take a great deal of effort and knowledge. Besides learning on the few areas mentioned here and many others, you will also need to do some practicing. As you begin to produce content, you will get better through trial and error. With that said, by following these five steps, nothing is stopping you from having a clear content marketing plan, which you can utilize in subsequently shaping your content marketing over time.