Things to Consider When Planning Content Marketing Strategy
A good content marketing strategy can do wonders for your business. Most businesses used to focus on a hard-sell approach where they would push the audience to buy their products and services. Now, the focus has moved towards a more customer-centric approach. Businesses nowadays want to provide value to the customer and tailor their services according to their needs.
It isn't easy to come up with an effective content marketing strategy. There is a lot of content online, and chances are you won't be able to make space for yourself. That is, unless you take the right approach and consider all the important factors.
Read on to find out what to consider when planning a content marketing strategy.
Set Your Targets and Goals
Most businesses make the mistake of not having well-defined goals and targets. This often leads to confusion and a general disconnect from the objective. You need to set your goals in clear, specific terms that everyone will be able to understand.
People usually categorize goals in two types. The first one is the Stretch goals. These are more long-term such quarterly or yearly milestones that your team needs to achieve overall. The other type is the SMART goals. SMART refers to goals that are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-bound.
Both of these goals combined will give you a clear idea on how to plan your content marketing strategy forward. Your team will have a vision for the future along with actionable steps that they can take to achieve that vision.
Consider Your Audience
For your content marketing strategy to be fully effective, you need to first consider who you are targeting. For this, you will need to do a thorough research. Try to draw different profiles (buyer personas) of your ideal customers and understand their needs, pain points, and challenges.
Having a buyer persona will also allow you to decide what type of content you want to generate. You need to put yourself in your audience's shoes and think what type of content you would want to see. With this in mind, you can cut down on fluff and unnecessary material and make your content marketing plan a heavily audience-centric one.
Focus on Your Niche
Unfortunately, the internet is overflowing with unnecessary content. There can be any number of problems, like plagiarism, reposting, and the like. Such content is of no real value to the audience, making them frustrated all the more.
Your business should be as focused as possible on your own distinct brand identity. This way, your content marketing strategy will be much more authentic and valuable for your leads and customers. It will stand out from all the internet trash and will immediately catch the eye of your target audience.
Your audience is always looking for specific solutions for their needs. The more focused you are towards your niche, the more specific your content marketing plan will be. People will be more likely to regard you as the authority on your niche.
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Use Different Types of Content
The more you proceed with your content marketing strategy, the more you will see how you need to adapt continuously. Blog posts and articles are perhaps the most common form of content you will see. But not everything can be conveyed using only these.
Different types of people require different stimuli. Some people react positively toward videos and infographics, while others prefer e-books and case studies. Audio blogs and podcasts are also highly popular as many people like the freedom they give.
A person may be more text-oriented, or they may be more visual. There is no universal strategy that you have to use. Your team should regularly come up with content that can engage all sorts of audiences. The broader your scope is, the more leads and conversions you will have.
Establish KPIs for Your Content Strategy
Now that you are all set to implement your content marketing strategy, it is time to put measures in place to evaluate where you stand. There are different types of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) that you can use to see if your strategy is effective or not.
Some of the KPIs that are generally used are the page views, bounce rate, and the average time on a webpage. Through these, you can evaluate which content piece generated the most traffic and where your audience spends their time the most.
You can also check if people are sharing your content on social media. If so, what impact is it producing, and how many conversions are you getting? The type of social media platform will also help you identify the possible reach of your content.
From a more sales-oriented approach, some of the KPIs could be on how many leads your content is generating and how many leads are turned away. You can then refine your content to develop the positive aspects and refine the weaker ones. Many businesses have their content marketing strategies revolving around how much revenue is being generated.
Get Feedback and Keep Improving
KPIs are extremely helpful in giving you an idea of how effective your content marketing strategy is. However, it doesn't cover everything. The best form of feedback can be received from the customers directly. Customers like to feel they are being valued and heard from the company. You can, and should, always ask them for suggestions and feedback.
This can be a critical step in establishing and strengthening customer relationships. You will be able to have a better insight on how your audience thinks and reacts to different types of content. Furthermore, your team can give you valuable suggestions and tips. Sales teams, for example, are in direct contact with customers on a regular basis.
It is a never-ending cycle of adapting and improving your content marketing strategy. You may stumble in the beginning, but if you keep pushing yourself, you will eventually have a highly successful strategy at play. You will be able to craft an even better one in the future.
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