As a content creator, you certainly have a goal to achieve, whether you make videos on the internet or write blog posts for your business. Whatever your goal or the platform on which you share your content, it’s important to define a content strategy.
If you are running a race, it’s crucial to know how to run, but it’s also important to know the route to take so that you don’t lose time and miss out on winning. It’s exactly the same with content creation: it’s important to know how to produce quality content, but without a good content strategy, you’ll struggle to achieve your goals.
What is a content strategy?
A content strategy is a plan that uses content to help you achieve your business goals and objectives. When executed well, your content strategy plan can:
- Drive more traffic
- Attract qualified leads
- Increase conversion, engagement and retention
But content strategy doesn’t exist on its own. If you have a blog for your company and share posts on social media for example, it’s not a content strategy, it’s just content. You need to connect this content with a business objective to have a proper content strategy.
Therefore, you need to ask yourself about the goals you’re trying to achieve through your content. What are the KPIs you should track to know if your strategy is working? Which audience do you want to reach with each type of content? Where should you share your content to attract the attention of your target audience?
Why do you need one?
According to a study by the Content Marketing Institute, 60% of the most successful B2B marketers have a content strategy.
Content strategy helps businesses with high-level planning to create content that has a positive impact on their OKR (Objectives and Key Results). It’s also a cost-effective way to attract high quality traffic to your website and increase sales. Indeed, with good content delivered to the right people at the right time and on the right medium, your conversion rate can only increase.
Every business needs a content strategy because it can only bring good results to your company. You may be wasting your time by creating content that is not suited for your audience or that is not delivered at the right time to the right people. Instead of shooting in the dark, you should spend some time choosing the best content strategy for your business before creating new content.
Choosing a content strategy and sticking to it will help you clarify your communication, build credibility and deliver content with consistency, which is key to getting results and achieving your goals.
How to define your content strategy?
1. Define your business goals
Without a clear idea of the goals you want to achieve, it will be difficult to elaborate a strategy. Have a clear definition of your objectives and key results in mind and put them in a roadmap so that you know on which goal you need to focus first.
You can easily get distracted and publish content just for the sake of it if you don’t have clear objectives written down. Create a list of KPIs you want to track and make sure your tools are properly set up to measure the results of your hard work.
2. Learn more about your target audience
You should start identifying your buyer personas, which are your ideal customers. Create their profiles to learn more about them and their consumer habits:
- What problem are they trying to solve?
- What draws their attention?
- How do they usually make purchase decisions?
You can also map your customer journey, to identify which message you should push to your audience at each step. That way your communications will be more impactful and effective.
3. Identify the right keywords
Run a SEO audit to know which content performs best, what are the most important keywords your audience uses and what topics they truly care about. Keywords are important because if you write good content with the right keywords, you’ll have a better rank in Google. This will bring you more traffic to your website, which means that you’ll improve your brand awareness.
People usually don’t search for your brand name in Google, but rather for the problem they are trying to solve. So make sure to identify the primary keywords they use, to push content that is relevant to them. You can use different SEO tools for that and I can recommend Uber Suggest by Neil Pateil because that’s the one I use and it gives me tons of content and keywords ideas!
You can also use these tools to have a look at what your competitors are doing and identify some keywords they don’t rank on. It can be a very good opportunity to create content for a keyword that isn’t too competitive to get more traffic shares.
4. Choose your communication channels
When creating content, it’s important to share your writings on different platforms. Make sure you choose distribution channels that are relevant. If your audience uses mostly Facebook and Twitter, it may not be interesting to waste time creating content for Instagram and YouTube for instance. Go where your audience already is and don’t try to convince them to adopt a new platform.
Each platform has its own codes and you need to make sure your content will fit in. You cannot always post the same piece of content on different platforms. Have a look at what other content creators share on the platforms and make sure to create content with the right format and length.
5. Create Content for the entire marketing pipeline
It’s important to write content for every step of your customer journey map. Some people already know your brand and only need to be convinced when others don’t know you yet. So you need to make sure you create content for everyone, to get them to the next step of the funnel.
There’s a content strategy I like which helps you create the right content for your target audience, depending on where they are in the funnel. It’s called the ToFu-MoFu-BoFu. ToFu stands for top of the funnel, MoFu stands for middle of the funnel and BoFu stands for bottom of the funnel. This strategy would require a blog article on its own and News Breed Revenue explains very well the different stages and the right type of content for each of them.
6. Follow a publication calendar
Once you know what type of content you need to write, for which target audience and on which platform, you can plan your content creation in a calendar. An editorial calendar helps you stay organized and keep track of your publications. It ensures that you are publishing content regularly enough and that you’re not forgetting about any segment of your audience.
Every company should have its own content strategy. Each company is unique and this is why you need to create unique content for your leads, prospects and customers. I hope these 6 steps will help you start on the right foot. Please share your best tips for a successful content strategy in the comments section below!