An effective Content Marketing strategy should clearly and practically define how the content you’re generating or creating and pushing out is going to help you achieve your goals. The time and resources you invest in creating authentic and impactful content needs to have returns. Creating a winning Content Marketing strategy is vital if you want to build a successful CM function in your business or for your personal brand.
In this article, we look at the qualities of a good SM strategy and explore the basic elements of a Content Marketing (CM hereafter) strategy.
A good strategy should be:
- Well-researched and informed on relevant trends and current business challenges
- Data-driven and measurable
- Practical and relevant
- Actionable – you have to be able to implement your strategy
Don’t fall into the trap of dumping information in your CM strategy document just to add pages. Your main priority should be putting together a strategy adds value and serve as a road map for your success.
The strategy objective answers the question of what your main objective is. Think about what you’re looking to achieve by investing in your content and package it into a solid strategy objective.
An example of a strategy objective could be to increase the visibility of Director Woman Digimag in South Africa and Ghana.
Once you’ve figured your objective/s and target audience out, do an audit of your current content strategy and statistics. Look at factors like engagement, type of content and how they perform, publishing consistency, follower count etc.
For you to achieve any level of impact with your content, you need to know who the best person to be consuming your content is. Knowing this will help inform the platforms and content types you should lean into to achieve your objective.
This is an example of a target audience statement: Director Woman is a business and career e-magazine for African women. We target an audience of African women/women of colour between 16 and 40, who either own a business or work in corporate and are interested in learning about natural hair and/or are seek informal business or career learning opportunities.
Business goals are an extension of the strategy objective. Here, you break your main objective down into bite-sized pieces that satisfy all the qualities of a good strategy. These goals should answer the question of why you are creating content. The content you create should complement these goals. An example of a business goal is to increase qualified lead generation.
Immediate goals drive and inform your content decisions. They express what your goals are for your content and should thus also be measurable. They also speak to the kind of content you want to create – educational, entertaining, etc. An example of an immediate goal is to create content that encourages dialogue or community engagement. This goal can be measured by the improvement in content engagement for instance.
Content Types and Distribution
Discuss the types of content (and frequency) you’ll be creating like blog articles, guides, social media posts, videos, etc. You need to be careful not to take on too much, too fast. Creating content needs time so make sure you consider what you can realistically deliver.
Also be clear about the platforms you will publish or share your content to/on.
This step is crucial to your strategy – how will you know you’re headed down the right path with your content choices, creation and delivery? You need to accurately measure and document the progress and success of your CM efforts using metrics like views, signups, engagement rates, impressions, best performing content, sources of traffic, etc.
As your business grows, you’ll progress into analysing other elements like competitor content and how to establish an advantage. Until then, focus on your strategy end goal. Always remember, there is no such thing as perfect content – get what you can out there. Listen to your audience and use trends, insights and performance reports to improve your strategy and content as you go.