A Strategy for Content Marketing
Content Marketing is much harder than it looks.
It is very time consuming and needs to be something you are passionate for.
Many companies try the Content Marketing route but without quality of content, and a quantity of that, then the method may pay poor dividends. Generally, it is better to not publish unless you have the quality there.
If you want to make use of this form of marketing, and there are good reasons for doing so, then you will need a strategy.
The first step is a publishing calendar, so you can plan each project and the time it will need.
Content marketing is like a garden – effort invested intelligently at the right time accrues benefits in the longer term. But its not overnight that this can bear fruit. A professional gardener has a schedule in their minds in order to get results.
For your calender you should also set a regular goal of publishing content, say every day or every two days, whatever you feel you can manage in terms of quality. Do not fret about making everything a masterpiece though – evergreen content – that is material that doesn’t go out of date, can be improved by adding links to other content on your site when you publish. So include maintenance and improvement tasks into your planning time, particularly when you don’t feel inspired.
You can publish a regular short update of relevance to your consumers when you have new information at other times.
Set aside time to think about how you will promote new products or activities, to build up the best response. For example how can you generate more enthusiasm for it in your announcements? New activity is a great way to remain fresh and relevant and seem to be at the forefront of your sector. These are priorities tasks to put into your planning, and should be given plenty of time…
If you are outsourcing any content production, this must also be schemed into your calendar. The outsourcing is not something where spending less for more quantity is likely to pay off. You wouldn’t have poor quality photography when making a brochure and the same thing applies to content. The phrase ‘penny wise. pound foolish’ comes to mind here.
Because quality is so important, set time aside to review what your have scheduled to publish. Create drafts and reviewing this critically to find aspects that can be made more clear and engaging are vital especially for bigger priority content.
You will always find improvements a few days after producing something, particularly in the text.
Evaluate. Is the content working? Is it presenting you correctly to your target market? What IS your target market? This leads on to the creative process of thinking about how to present information, is it best in a visual form, such as an ‘infographic’, mixture of text and pictures, mainly text, or video? Is it within your areas of expertise, and if not, can you afford (or afford not) to get it finished by specialists?
If all this seems bewildering, then you can start with a simple rule. If you know your market and they already like you, then produce what you would find engaging and build from there. That’s a good strategy because you should find putting the time and passion in more rewarding. But keep thinking about how you can improve. With this base, you can then hire in whatever skills are needed to improve its reach with graphics and videos etc.
If you are a blogger, and can get others to engage and publish on your site, then incentivise them further. Publish their bios and provide the right kind of links (back links) on your site so they can benefit. Product discounts and paying them are good options also.
You may also find talent here to bring in and develop primary content.
But be wary of poor quality and avoid trying to build links to your site from other websites not connected to you, as Google can penalise you for ‘spammy’ links. This strategy CAN work, but it’s highly advisable to get specialist guidance on this.
Don’t restrict your efforts to a blog, or even one social platform. Tailor efforts to different platforms, making use of their different attributes, such as what sort of content lends itself to Twitters shorter message length. Look into platforms like Twitter, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn and Pinterest. Feeds can also be set up to share selected content across these platforms automatically from your blog, multiplying your efforts.
To get the most out of that its important to build your social platform pages with a broadly common theme with your website.
Emails can also be sent to subscribers that should also match this theme and contain snippets of your published content every month or week.
But to really benefit, think about what social media should do best – it should be more interactive and responsive to consumers. This type of content, which can also apply to a blog or other published information with comments sections, is a departure from traditional media and needs thinking about in a different way.
If you need more help with social media, media purchasing or anything else mentioned here, then please get in touch with us.