How many times have you heard the saying, “Content is king?” More times than you can count, I’m sure. We all know we need to create “quality content” for our businesses, but it is easier said than done. With so much content flooding the Internet, it is becoming harder and harder to find quality content. However, with a proper plan in place, you too can create content that resonates with your audience.
Define Your Goals
You first must know what that “something” is in order to plan for it. A good content strategy is aimed at achieving your business’ goals. Is your goal to attract more leads, increase brand awareness, or deepen relationships with your current clients? Chances are you want to master all three, but take it step by step.
Understand Your Customers – Research and Listen
The second step in developing a great content strategy is research, lots and lots of research. You want to know what sort of questions your audience is asking and the sort of information they are looking to find. Use sites like Quora and Facebook Graph Search to see what people are scouring for on the Internet. Then peek at what your competitors are publishing to see if there is a hole you can fill. Find that sweet spot, and start developing content based on your findings.
Related Webinar: Know Your Story, Understand Your Customer
Develop Content That Inspires/Informs/Solves Your Customers’ Pain Points
This stage piggybacks off the last step. However, it also includes more specific research on your leads and clients. What are the current questions they are asking? A great way to find out this information is from your sales or support team. Anyone who speaks to leads and clients on a daily basis will have a great understanding of issues, pain points, needs, and wants, and should be able to relay that information to your team. Use this data wisely, as this will, and should, drive a lot of your content.
Organize and Plan With an Editorial Calendar
Of course, writing and spewing out content willy-nilly may work for a bit, but if you are trying to strategically integrate your digital marketing, then you need to be organized. An editorial calendar, or a timeline of who, what, when, and where for your content, is going to be a huge help for you and your team. Create monthly editorial calendars that include your blog posts, contributed articles, webinars, social media campaigns, and whatever other content marketing you have planned.
Related Blog Post: 5 Tips for Managing Your Content Marketing Strategy
Increase Exposure Through Multiple Channels
The great thing about digital marketing is there are so many places where we can distribute all the content we spend so much time creating! Social media, blogs, other industry blogs, newsletters, and more—the possibilities are endless. Include your distribution channels in your editorial calendar and overall plan. Tailor your content to match the style of each blog to which you contribute content. This is the same for social media. The way you share content on Twitter is going to be different than LinkedIn because of the different audiences. Keep that in mind when sharing.
If you are developing your content plan, then keep these steps in mind, as they will help guide your ideas and keep you organized!