August 19th, 2020 | Updated on March 19th, 2021
By now, you’ve more than likely heard of the term ‘content marketing’. This marketing practice is both remarkably widespread and effective.
In fact, 90% of all organizations use content in their marketing efforts, with 80% believing that custom content should be central to all marketing.
To make sure that your content marketing efforts are effective, you need to create a well-designed content marketing strategy.
We’ll dive more into what a content strategy is, why it’s important, and how to create content marketing strategies that are built for success.
What Is A Content Marketing Strategy?
Think of your content strategy as your blueprint for content development. It’s your guide to making sure that you don’t go off track and start producing irrelevant content.
Content marketing can take many forms – from blog posts to podcasts, videos, ebooks and more.
You need to identify which content marketing tactics will be most effective for your business. Basically, align your content strategy with the problems your business solves through its products and services.
Your content marketing strategy is the management of this content. It acts as the guide for your marketing plan that should continuously demonstrate who your business is and what expertise you bring.
Why Is Having A Content Marketing Strategy Important?
According to HubSpot’s Not Another State of Marketing Report, almost 70% of businesses were actively investing in content marketing in 2020. This means that there’s a lot of competition out there.
A content marketing strategy ensures that you’re creating content that will stand out from your competitors. Content marketing is one of the best ways to constantly generate new leads.
But it needs to be the right type of content and it needs to be done well, which is where content marketing strategies come into play.
How To Create Your Content Marketing Strategy In 2021
If there’s anything that 2020 has taught us, it’s that we need to be ready to adapt at all times. While we can plan as much as we want, we need to accept that sometimes things just aren’t going to go according to plan.
Which is why, when working on your content marketing strategy, you need to make sure that it’s adaptable.
Whether you’re following an in-depth content strategy template or going with a simple content marketing strategy – there are a few things that you absolutely need to think about.
Here are the steps to creating a powerful content marketing strategy:
Step 1: Create Specific Goals
Creating content “simply because” is not a good idea. You need to define your reasons for creating content and be specific with your goals on what you want this content to achieve. Don’t create vague goals, go deeper into what you actually want to accomplish, and by when.
For example, to build an email list of over 10,000 by the end of 2020. Knowing your goals from the beginning will make it easier to determine what’s best for your content strategy.
Step 2: Create Buyer Personas
In order to develop content that speaks to your audience, you first need to define your audience.
A buyer persona refers to the characteristics of your ideal audience. You need to become so intrinsically familiar with your audience, that you know exactly how to speak to them.
Including the stories that they’ll relate to, the language that they respond to, and the information that they’re looking for. You can do this by conducting surveys or requesting interviews with some of your website visitors.
Or, go the more analytical route and dig into your Google Analytics to find out more about your website visitors. This could include data such as demographics, interests, and types of content they prefer.
Step 3: Find The Appropriate Channels
When finding the appropriate channels to share your content on, you need to consider the cost as well as your ROI.
Channels such as your blog and social media channels are great, as you have complete control over them. Then, there’s also the paid media route, including social media ads and Google Ads.
While this can help get more traction in the beginning, it’s not useful for building long-term audiences, because it requires consistent payment (and is quite expensive, too).
Step 4: Create A Content Calendar
A content calendar is a huge part of your content marketing strategy. It breaks down your big marketing concepts, into smaller, more manageable tasks. It also allows you to plan according to your goals, as you’re thinking a few months ahead of time.
You do also need to remember to be flexible with your content calendar, adjusting according to the current environment. Take the COVID-19 outbreak as an example: many content calendars needed to be adjusted.
Step 5: Set Up Systems To Easily Track Your Progress
Evaluating the progress of your content marketing strategy is crucial, because it’s how you learn if what you’re doing is working.
It’s important to set up systems that allow you to easily track your progress. You need to set up multiple digital marketing tools to monitor your progress, such as Google Analytics.
It’s also extremely helpful to make use of a CRM (Customer Relationship Manager) to help plan, produce, publish, and measure your results all in one place.
Step 6: Optimize Your Content
Once you’ve analyzed the data from Google Analytics or your other tools, you need to put those findings into practice.
If you see that certain content is working, then continue using those strategies on the new content that you produce.
For the content that isn’t working, you need to figure out how to optimize it so that it produces better results.
Step 7: Scale Your Content Production
As your content strategy starts bringing in more results, consider ramping up your production to keep up with the growing demands.
By now, you should know what your audience is looking for and how to provide for their needs. This is where personalization is crucial for keeping them interested.
Ready To Develop A Content Marketing Strategy?
It’s no secret that better planning brings better results – in anything really. Creating a content marketing strategy will drastically improve your chances of achieving your goals and getting useful results.
By going through the above steps, you’ll be on your way to building a quality content development strategy that will attract more leads and grow your business.