There is no refuting it; content is king. Whether you are a business owner looking for a place to start, or a seasoned marketing professional with a color-coded game plan, it never hurts to take a step back and ensure that your strategy is up-to-date and engaging. With more competition than ever, building brand trust and loyalty should be top-of-mind for every business. Your first step towards building that brand-customer relationship is developing an intelligent content strategy.
To kick things off, lets define what a content strategy is. Your content strategy refers to the management of all tangible media that you create and own, whether it be written, visual, audio, downloadable, etc. This is the piece of your marketing plan that allows you to demonstrate who you are and what specific expertise you bring to the table.
When developing your strategy there are many thoughts that come to your mind. To be successful you must cut through the clutter and ask yourself these important questions to truly hone in on your plan:
Who is reading your content?
This is the big question. Who is your target audience, or audiences? Like many businesses, you may have a variety of types of customers, thus your content strategy should cater to (at least) a few of these buyer personas. Think hard about who your typical customers are, their age range, what they use your business for, and what else they may be interested in. By utilizing a variety of channels, you can deliver different types of content to each type of audience.
What makes you special?
Every business has competitors, so what makes you stand out in the crowd? Is it sleek design? Engaging customer service? Or perhaps superior products? In order to rise above the noise, you need to prove to customers why you deserve their patronage. This is your time to shine.
What problems are you solving?
Most likely your business solves a specific issue that your customers have. Thus, your content should do the same. Use your blogs, videos, infographics, or whatever else you may create to educate your clients about issues you solve and help them address it. Your content should always be helpful and engaging, while reinforcing the solutions you are offering.
What formats are you using, and where is this content going?
The types of content you choose to create depend on what you think your customers will engage with, and what types of topics you will cover. Infographics? Blogs? Videos? Each can be utilized in a variety of ways, but you will need to determine what format is best for expressing your position. Similarly, where you post this content all depends upon the types of customers you have. Channels can include your website, blogging site, newsletter or social media.
Creating a content strategy can be a daunting task. Asking yourself these important questions is only the beginning of a process that takes creativity, organization, and some time. Whether you are building your foundation or looking for a way to breathe life into a stale plan, we hope this guides you in the right direction.