You want to create a fresh content marketing strategy for your project? Or you already have one, but it does not work? If the answer is yes, than this article will be helpful for you!
To start with we need to find out, what is content marketing strategy and why do you need to create it.
Сontent marketing strategy is a strategic approach on the content marketing, on the engagement of users, drawing their attention. Essentially a content marketing strategy looks how content marketing (not content) can be used in a strategic way.
Why is it important to create it? First of all, because content marketing is one of the most effective marketing strategies available today. It's the driving force of communication between businesses and consumers. Besides, it answers such questions as:
- Who are the buyer personas and what are their content needs and preferences?
- Which marketing and other organizational goals can we realize or improve by better using content marketing?
- How will we make sure that all content marketing is properly organized, in correlation with other marketing processes and/or teams?
- For which other marketing goals and even business purposes can we use content marketing?
Now, after we became familiar with the main issues let’s consider the mistakes to avoid or correct them.
Skip the Planning
From the very beginning you might have a lot of energy and ideas, but always remember to keep your head above the water. Start with writing down your current strategy and organize your content with a content calendar, content audit, a description of your target audience and a formal marketing plan. You need to make a plan of your actions, appoint the team, responsible for the implementing the project, and set a budget. Use data analysis to make your content effective, because you need a well thought-out strategy to guide all your actions. All the information you need is your data: users interests, aims or details of their path.
While doing all this preparation stuff you should find the exact answers on the questions like “How does the success look?” and “How does this activity help to increase sales and revenue?” The main purpose is to find the reason and the solution for it. All the strategy is orientated on engaging new visitors, promoting your ideas to them and making them your happy customers! Even after that using the content properly you keep your customers interested.
According to the Content Marketing Institute 48% of B2B marketers don’t have a documentation while content marketing strategy is creating. Only 35% of them have their strategy documented, which leads to a clear plan regarding their goals and their expectations from their efforts.
What is an advantage of documentation? It gives you a view not only on a short-term, but also on a long-term perspective. Besides, you would better understand what content do you need according to your strategy. The internet is a dynamic place, so you always need check and notice everything for sustained growth.
If keep writing every step it is easier to look on the whole process, find mistakes or missing parts and correct them.
Content is not Well-prepared
Nowadays content marketing is a very popular term, that is why people start to put their attention on it, but most of them are creating more and more content just with one purpose - TO HAVE IT, whilst it really does matter what exactly you are putting into the content.
In pursuit of content people start to add different sections or articles on their website. Here is a vivid example of how hastily created content can offend your leads. Naturally such an attitude will lead to decreasing of number of customers, and not to its growth.
Of course, such an accident inspired people to look for other mistakes on the website. It becomes obvious, that the content is done without the necessary care. So, you should make the content specific, well-organized and related to the topic of your website. Put attention on the visual part, because users usually have no time to read, they go through and look. Visual elements attract a lot, but should not be too bright or annoying. Remember, that the content’s biggest aim is to engage people, attract their attention and make them interested. There should be a balance of content with useful information (case studies) and your own advertisement, but this is the next point.
You are Selling Instead of Teaching
"Nobody else cares that much about us. Our content needs a lot less 'we' and a lot more 'you'."
Carmen Hill “Babcock & Jenkins”
Content marketers can be too much selling at inappropriate times. They usually focus only on topics that cover their own interests. But if you want your content to be successful and attractive, you have to write not only about yourself. All your website is about your product in general. Create some content, that is really interesting, modern, catching and always related to your sphere.
Imagine, that there is an online store selling clothes and they have a blog. Is it interesting to read all the posts beginning with “We can offer you...” or “In our store you can find...”? The answer is NO, because you can see by your own, what they are selling, but this blog can provide a potential customer with some advice, additional information.
You can write an article showing the trend in skirts, but at the end add something like “Hey, if you want to keep up with trends, buy now on our website link! ”
Sure, every piece of content we create is promotional to some extent. We are not just publishing it, because we are good writers. At the end, we always want the user to take action.
Content Without Audience
Everyone wants to feel like an expert, when it comes to the question, what is the very best solution for customers. But in the reality focusing on your own interests is not a useful way to build an effective content marketing strategy. You should clearly know, who is your target audience and what do they need.
How to learn about your leads, customers and visitors? You should take information from your data, reports and feedbacks. It is one of the crucial points - to analyze information you have to use it in a right way. Try to put yourself into the shoes of the user.
This is a common mistake that even experienced brands make. You might think, that narrowing the audience leads to the limiting of potential, however, what narrowing the audience really does is increase your content’s relevance. Focus on permanent customers shows that you take care of them and will attract more new ones.
Creating content for the right audience will be a stimul to you to produce super-focused content. That is great! Such kind of specified content always engage visitors, besides it helps to build a deeper connection with their habits and their needs.
No New Perspective
Keep pulse on the industry! Every time you need to update your aims and challenges, unless users will get tired of your ideas. You need to stay in the search of fresh solutions and decisions all the time - it is the only way to develop and go further.
No one will be interested in the information the other sources have too. You need to create your content and put unique features in it. Another strategy is to get deeper into the topics you have already planned. To be authoritative, content should be both thought-provoking and thorough. Notice: you should always provide users with practical examples and guides to make the relationship more interactive and engaging. Nowever, you can put some evergreen content to cover both short-term and long-term perspectives.
You came up with a new idea? Try it! A successful content marketing strategy cannot overlook the testing phase. The result of your attempt (whether it is successful or not) will help you make a conclusion on further actions. For example, you can make a research on your idea with the help of A/B testing through the email campaigns.
Forgetting About SEO
“#SEO is what will help drive traffic & decrease the cost of customer acquisition efforts says @neilpatel” N.Patel
It’s not enough to produce good content, but it is important to help your potential customer to find it. It is a very common mistake, when people forget to promote their ideas. Here comes the SEO. Search engine optimization is the process of improving your content in order to help search engines discover it. It is the way of making your information more available for the users. If you manage to increase the quality and quantity of the content you have on the website, you will have the higher ranking on the search list.
However, SEO is more than just keywords or phrases to put you closer to the top, but also knowledge about the optimization of the content in social networks and other sources to be attractive, understandable and available.
Not Measuring the Content Marketing Strategy
It is very difficult to have a lot of aims and perspectives at the same time or to develop your content in every sphere, that is why it is necessary to put attention on the measuring the content marketing strategy. The measurement of your efforts helps you to understand the best parts of your content marketing strategy and underline small details you did not notice. To ensure that it is fully incorporated and obtains optimal results, a content marketing strategy is developed through key steps. There is a host of metrics to look at for a piece of advice when you have a robust analytics solution, but it is better to have 2-3 metrics, and perhaps some secondary metrics not to put too much and not to make the process more difficult.
There are the major methods:
- On-Site Consumption Metrics (is mostly about the number of pageviews and the average time spent on each page by your site’s visitors and the reasons of such amount);
- Third-Party Site Metrics (tells you about inbound clicks from articles that were picked up from public relations pitches or other efforts to create backlinks by publishing on a reputable third-party site);
- Sales and Leads (it is the ability to generate leads and sales).
The last, but not least mistake, widely spread in content marketing is, that people usually forget about distributing.
Imagine, you have your content written, what is more - for the target audience, SEO is done, but you do not get enough increase of the page views. It means that you forgot to spread your content to make it visible for the wider range of people. You should be not only a creator of the content, but also a marketer, all you are doing should work on you.
Not only SEO helps your content to be represented to the customer, but social networks also do a great job. Use this opportunity! Share your content and do not forget about the CTA stuff to arouse interest and to give users the opportunity to contribute. Working with the social networks remember that it is worth filling the content with images and attractive design and pay attention on catchy headlines.
Promoting every piece of content with paid budget is untenable, but finding opportunities to do it efficiently may help you improve organically, too. Sharing is neither easy nor quick. In fact, you should probably spend more time sharing your content than you do creating it. It’s that important.
Now you see, that is not so difficult to build a proper content marketing strategy, suitable exactly for your case. Begin with analyzing of what you already have and what you need to reach, than make plan and implement it step by step. Just keep in mind all the issues above and always take care about your customers. Never be afraid of being different and innovative. Good luck!