Outbound Marketing

Guess What? You Need a Content Strategy

How’s your content marketing panning out for you?

Do you have a strategy in place, or are you just flinging your stuff into the ether and hoping it’ll make an impact?

Too many people think that a blog post here or there will cut it. Maybe they’ll lengthen their posts a little to stretch beyond the 500-word mark. Maybe they’ll start sharing to their Facebook page a little more often (let’s say twice a week instead of once in a Blue Moon)

Here’s what you should know:

Your content is probably fine. It’s your strategy that bites the big one.

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Here’s are some fun facts for you:

  • 62% of the most successful content marketers have a documented strategy vs. 16% of the least successful.

  • 72% of content marketers who increased their level of success over the past year credit their strategy as a major contributor.

How much more convincing do you really need?

A solid content marketing strategy can offer you insights into making smarter, more successful tactical decisions. There’s nothing that brightens up a content marketers day quite like the ability to plan, manage, and execute the right steps every day.

How Do You Set Up Your Content Marketing Strategy?

It’s up to you to define what your core business and customer needs are. Your content strategy should address these needs.

Answering a few key questions will help to set you on the right path:

  • What is your purpose? 
    You need to figure out why your content exists and what you hope your audience will do once they’ve taken a peek at it. Their actions should always provide some value for your business, so make sure you align your expectations accordingly.

  • Can you define our audience persona and buyer journey? 
    Which one audience will benefit the most from your content? You need to figure out what their current user state is and how their personal needs and goals could evolve in the near future.

  • What is your unique editorial mission? 
    Take a step back and look at your brand’s unique perspectives. You need to discover what differentiates your approach from that of your competitors. Find your voice.

How to Define Your Purpose

Simply put, you need to know what you’re going to achieve with your content. Different types of content are suited to different things. You need to figure out where you’re going in order to discover the best way to get there.

Here are some key things your business could be struggling with:

  • Brand awareness: 
    Are you trying to drum up awareness of your service/product to penetrate a new market? Or are you aiming to launch a new product or compete with a market leading competitor?

  • Audience engagement: 
    Are you trying to set yourself up as a thought leader or reliable source of information? Do you need to find influencers (or micro-influencers) to spread the word about your brand?

  • Website traffic: 
    Are you dealing with a high bounce rate? Do visitors to your website just not stick around? Do you need content that will push them to the CTA you’re hoping for?

  • Lead generation/nurturing: 
    Do you need help qualifying your leads? Are you struggling to get your current leads to move down your sales funnel?

  • Increasing your marketing ROI: 
    Are your marketing costs too high with no decent results for your efforts? Are you trying to find ways to open up new revenue streams or increase your current sales targets?

  • Customer retention and loyalty: 
    Is your churn rate way too high? Do you need to find better ways to get your customers to stick around? Are you struggling to find a way to upsell your services to existing low spenders?

How to Set Realistic Goals

Once you’ve ironed out the purpose of your content, you can start looking at setting yourself some realistic goals:

  • Sales goals 
    Develop mixed media content that will support specific marketing campaigns or sales-driven goals

  • Cost-savings goals 
    Create content that will increase the cost efficiency of your marketing activities across the board.

  • Business growth goals 
    Develop content that helps in generating new revenue streams or creating new product lines.

How to Identify and Understand Your Target Audience

While every business hopes its content has universal appeal, content marketing typically works best when it is targeted to serve one audience above all others. When you publish broad-reaching content that aims to be all things to all people, it never gets specific enough to provide much value to anybody.

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