How to Craft the Perfect Content Strategy
According to the Content Marketing Institute, a majority of content marketers have no documented content strategy. Average content marketers may have an idea and a direction, but they lack a plan of action. Great content marketers understand that creating an effective content strategy takes time and resources. The details are enough to fill an entire book!
Here’s a simple framework to craft the perfect content strategy to engage the right people in your market.
Define Your Audience
If you want your content strategy to help sell your company’s products and services, you have to know your audience. The first step is to develop personas that describe a fictional representation of your target audience.
Knowing who you’re talking to will inform every piece of content you create, and it will help you determine what is relevant and what is not. Content that doesn’t speak directly to the needs and interests of your ideal customer is a waste of resources.
Understand What Your Audience Wants to Know
Once you’ve defined who you’re talking to, you need to learn what they want to hear from you. This means thinking like a potential customer moving through the buyer’s journey. You must ask yourself what they need to know and in what order they need to know it to determine that you are the most logical choice for them to take the plunge and do business with you.
This is a critical step in any content strategy. Oftentimes, company leaders have differing priorities. They think content should focus on specific features and benefits of your products and services, but those details may be completely irrelevant to your ideal customer’s journey. You may have to walk a fine line between pleasing your bosses and pleasing your customers.
Determine How to Deliver the Content
Once you know who you’re talking to and what they want to hear, the next step in your content strategy is getting your hands dirty and developing the content. By understanding the audience’s demographics, psychographics and knowing how they consume information, you can determine the best formats and mediums for delivery.
Start from the Foundation
Many content marketers fail because they start by worrying how to create and distribute content. Until you have your basic building blocks in place, don’t worry about how you’re going to create content and distribute it. This won’t help your content strategy. After all, it makes little sense to worry about distribution if you don’t have anything engaging to distribute.
Taking the time to understand your audience, their journey and generating ideas based on that data will ensure you come up with a distribution plan that supports the strategy and puts your content in front of the right eyes.
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