Every successful content marketing campaign starts out as a strategy. Without one, a marketer is unable to deliver the right content to the right audience, and the whole campaign is sure to end up disjointed and ineffective. But what exactly is a content marketing strategy? If you said that it’s a list of content you are going to create, as well as the platforms upon which and dates when you expect to publish that content, you’re only half right. Let’s have a squiz at the four steps you should take to craft an easy yet professional content marketing strategy:
Step 1: Marketing plan
The first phase of a content marketing strategy is arguably the most important. Start by listing the specific goals you hope to achieve. These can be anything from growing your following base, to A/B testing new types of content. The content marketing plan should also detail any obstacles you foresee, as well as the current opportunities that are present in your market. You should also be able to show the unique value your content is going to provide to your target audience.
Step 2: Audience personas
Phase two of developing a content marketing strategy is to build unique audience personas. Gone are the days where digital marketers can throw wide nets, using generic content, and hope to reel in customers. Today’s marketing collateral needs to speak to the individual, and offer them a benefit. Your audience personas should include your ideal customer’s gender, age, possible spending habits, and where they spend their time online. The better you know who your target audience is, the better you’re able to serve their needs
Step 3: Customer journey
Step number three is an exciting one! Here you will detail the possible path your target audience will take while interacting with your content. Start by writing down the end goal of the journey: where do you want your customers to arrive once they’ve consumed your content?
For most campaigns this is a website landing page, where a customer fills in a form or purchases a product or service. Once you have the endpoint, work your way back to the start point. For example: The start point is a Facebook post. A customer will click on the post and be taken to a blog article. From the blog article they will be prompted to connect with the brand, and be taken to the contact page.
Step 4: Content map
The final phase of this easy content marketing strategy is the development of a simple content map. This can be drawn up in a table format for easier understanding. It involves listing the platforms where the content will be shared (blog, social channels, PPC adverts, etc) and the types of posts that will be shared on those platforms (video, image, link, GIF, etc). You should also include dates next to each content type so you know the following just by looking at the content map:
- How many posts will be shared?
- On which platforms will these be shared?
- On which days will this content be shared.
Once you have the above four elements completed, your content marketing strategy is done and ready for approval! The next phase would be to find the creatives who will be developing the content, who should ideally be added to your marketing plan.
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