Content is king. But more importantly, the right kind of content is king. Don’t just put out content for the sake of putting it out. This approach will simply result in content that isn’t fully thought through, and content that isn’t strategic. What I mean by the last word is that just as everything deserves a strategy, so does content marketing. It must be thought of as a key component of an effective marketing strategy. With, the right kind of, content being king, you have to ensure that the content you create is on point with who your brand is, is on point with the overall message, and is written in a way that entices the audience to read and learn more about you rather than run away because you’ve beat them down with industry and company jargon.
Here is how I would approach the creation of a content marketing strategy. First and foremost it needs to align with the overall marketing strategy/plan, which needs to align with the overall business strategy/plan.
Once the marketing strategy/plan has been written and signed off on by all stakeholders (and I mean sales, other involved directors, and sometimes even the president of a business unit) you can then go about creating your content strategy.
Focus on the areas that need content. Seems simple enough, but as I said at the beginning, don’t just create content to create content. If you need to improve brand awareness, or drive traffic to your site, or increase web sales then most of those efforts will be focused around a digital strategy. You may need to focus on improving through leadership which means becoming a resource to your potential customers, rather than someone whose emails they delete because you only share information about your products, rather than how you solve problems for your customers via your products.
Think about SEO. With all content you need to make sure that you are easily found for the right reasons and via the right keywords.
You will most likely need to adjust your content strategy on an ongoing basis, as you may need to adjust your marketing plan, but make sure that the two are always in sync with each other. And make sure that everyone is in sync with what kind of content, and message, you are putting out to the greater customer segment(s).
And last but not least, analyze, analyze, analyze and revise
I could go on and on with specifics, but these are my high level approach steps to a well planned out content marketing strategy.
Looking for some expert advice? Here are some articles that I stumbled upon and liked:
Developing a Content Marketing Strategy – Content Marketing Institute – This piece goes through the 5 things a content strategy plan must have.
How to Build a Content Marketing Strategy – MOZ – Granted, this is an older article but still very relevant. It talks about why you should care about a content marketing strategy as well as a framework for that strategy, which is very detailed!
Content Marketing – Marketo – “Content marketing is the process of creating high-quality, valuable content to attract, inform, and engage an audience, while also promoting the brand itself.” What else do I need to say? The post also goes into how to design engaging content, which is very important.