Before you can begin with content marketing, you need a content marketing strategy that fits in with the rest of your digital marketing strategy.
If you’re getting a little hung up on what that means and what you need to do, here’s a simple checklist to follow to start your content marketing off right:
1. Where is your business right now?
Before you can plan where you want to go, have a good look at the current state of your business and your marketing. Decide what you’re doing that’s working and figure out what isn’t pushing you further forward.
Remember that SWOT analysis from your business plan? Now’s a good time to revisit that, so you have a starting point.
Then look at your goals for your business and where you’d like to be short term and long term. What would you like your content marketing to do for you?
2. Create Buyer Personas
If you haven’t yet worked out who your target market is, then do it now, before you even write a word. Your content will be much more targeted and likely to bring in leads if you know who you are aiming for.
If you haven’t done this before, read our article on Buyer Personas.
3. Plan your content and your sharing platforms
From your work on your target market, you should hopefully have an idea of the type of content your audience prefers, whether that’s podcasts, video, or written blogs. Figure out what social media platforms they prefer too, such as LinkedIn, Instagram or Facebook, and you’ll have more impact when you share.
Next, use an editorial calendar to plan out your content for the next few months, including your social media posts and any guest blogs. Having a calendar will keep you on track and stop you facing the blank page with no idea what to write.
4. Start creating content!
When you’re writing or creating audio/video, refer back to your buyer personas for the type of content your ideal customers would like to see, but also think about how you want to come across. You have a personality, so use it! No-one else can be you, so you’ll immediately stand out from everyone else on that alone.
Don’t forget to include SEO in your content marketing efforts to get you moving up the search engine rankings. If you’re not sure where to start, run a quick SEO report on your website.
Plan your calls to action (CTAs), too. Decide what you want each piece of content to achieve, whether that’s signing up for your mailing list or buying a product, and add a suitable and eye-catching CTA.
5. Check your results
If you regularly look at your new content strategy, check your analytics and look at your conversion rates, you should be able to see what’s working and adjust or stop doing anything that isn’t.
With an eye on your stats and a plan in place, you should start to see great results from your content marketing.