Content Marketing Strategy
You may believe it or not Content Marketing Strategy is the most effective and Organic way of getting more attention for your brand or services.
To make sure your content marketing plan is up to date and you are following best practices applicable to your time. It never hurt to revisit your content marketing strategy at any point. In this age of all time lower attention level, you have heavy competition. And when competition is higher new techniques and innovations needs to take place of legacy old newspaper news articles.
Content Marketing Institute released a report of one of its survey. Where they disclosed that 70% marketers are creating more contents comparing to 2016. This proves that in the online world you need to be on top of your game in order to be on the first page of google.
What is exactly Content Strategy?
If I have to explain this to a 5 years old kid then how I will do it... Well, let me think...!!!
If you run a lemonade business then you must have thought of a place where you build up your storefront. What kind of lemonade you are going to sell and how much you will sell one lemonade glass for? - That's your business model.
For your lemonade business, you must have decided about who is going to shout on the road and attract people? - That's your marketing plan.
And before and during your lemonade sale. You decided to print some leaflets and distribute around the area where your lemonade stand is going to be located - That's your content strategy.
Did you understand it now?
You already know How powerful content is! But content strategy is not just creating engaging content and distributing it. It also depends upon various other factors like:
- Who is your target audience?
- What problem is your content going to solve for readers?
- How can you make it unique?
- Publishing channels?
- How often are you going to publish your content?
Why should you create a Content Marketing Strategy?
When you implement your content strategy in a real world that enables you to prepare for your upcoming targetted traffic. Because if you create one good blog post and share it with your friends and family. There is a high possibility that they will share it with people around them who are interested in your blog post. Which will generate organic traffic to your blog or website? Now imagine if you could generate around 20 clicks on your blog post. Which gives you:
1 Blog Post = 20 Organic Readers Per Month
so when you create more blog post like that it will multiply itself
5 Blog Post = 20 x 5 which is 100 Organic Readers Per Month
And here you are not paying any money to advertisers.
And this will keep coming to your website indefinitely because its organic.
This will generate relevant leads for your portal. For example, if you generate 1 lead out of all 5 blog post in a year then, its equal to
5 blog post = 100 Organic Readers = 1 Lead
50 blog post = 1000 Organic Readers = 10 Lead
That means if you are converting 1 lead out of 10 leads its around 5% return on your investment. Which is way better than online marketing and advertisements.
So are you convinced now to create a content marketing strategy?
Now, let's dive in to learn the specifics of how to create a content marketing plan.
5 Steps for Creating a Content Marketing Strategy
1) Define Goal
It is very important to understand what are your goals before even starting with you rcontent strategy plan. Because this helps you to evaluate any tasks against effort and value.
For example if you are writing 5 aticles in one week. Which will bring you 20 organic views. Does is adds value into what you want to achieve.
If the answer is yes then you should go forward with the plan. Or else you need to improvise on what you are planning. I personally use below template in order to evaluvate my goals.
Its quite straight forword but helpful.
Reach out to me via comments on this article, if you want this spreadsheet.
2) Conduct User Research
In order to get a working content strategy plan, you need to define who is your target audience. This really helps because if you are creating content for people whom you don't even want to target. Then all leads generated by your content marketing plan will have no impact on your conversions. This will affect badly on your goals.
And by knowing your audiences you can make sure that; your content production is following the right direction.
Once you have answers to all questions above. You become more aware of your audience.
This capability increases your chance to choose relevant content; will obviously generate targetted traffic.
You must be wondering:
What if I am not able to get answers to above questions. Because sometimes. You don't have sufficient resources and other times you don't know whom to reach out to get those statistics.
Well if that is the case let me tell you an ugly truth.
You are not ready for your niche. Because above questions are the backbone of your content strategy.
See this video below for more understanding of user research.
If you do understand User Research now let's move on to the next section.
3) Brainstorming Content iDeas
Now as you have understood the value of doing user research and there needs. It's time to go forward and come up with your content ideas. When you do brainstorming alone vs brainstorming with your team, I usually found it very interesting that even though people who are not into your niche could come with some really interesting insights and ideas which you being a pro in your niche cant think of.
Hence I always suggest doing brainstorming sessions with at least 2 to 3 people. And maybe you want to diversify it a little time to time. It really helps.
I personally use following online resources to come up with content ideas.
Let's have a look at how I do it:
Google Trends: What is trending?
It is very important to understand that if you create your content on off topic. There are high chances that you will receive no or very low attention to your posts. So making sure that people are already interested in your content topic is the key.
Here is Steve explaining how you can pick your content titles with the help of Google Trends:
So now you got a good idea about how you can utilise google trends in order to generate more content ideas.
Let's move on to my new technique:
What's getting shared?
Good content is OK
But Great content is what you need. And content that brings more attention has a great idea behind it. This idea could come from anywhere. Nobody in this world has copyright on good content. And the best part is to create awesome contents we could all learn from each other.
That's why I suggest my reader that the best place to start is by researching your competitors content. I guess its pretty easy to figure out who is your competitor. Just type the keywords on Google which you would like to rank for and boom...
You will see your competitors website on the first page.
Tip: If you understand what is working for your competitors in terms of content. Then you are already one step ahead.
Now imagine if you have a search engine where you can just copy paste your competitor's website and find out how many social media shares your competitor got.
+ PLUS +
You get to see what people like to share. You might ask; is it possible?
Well yes, it is. Because there is a tool available online which can show you all of your competitors highly shared content. Have a look at this video explaining how you can search most shared contents in your niche:
Here is Neil Patel explaining how you get benefitted with the help of buzzsumo
4) Types of Content
Now as you have figured out what is your content topic. Next step is to choose which type of content you would like to create.
There are many types of content you could create. But I have drafted a simple list which top online marketers use for there content marketing campaigns:
- Blog posts
- Case Studies
- Wordpress Plugins
Obviously, this is a limited list. But above ten types of content perform best in the industry. Moz did a study with 32 prime SEO agencies and found out that Articles are the most wanted content segment. Customers are aware of the power of good content and they are more interested in buying content related to there niche.
Which means that good content writing is in high demand in the market. Hence more competition. Below is a pie chart showing the distribution of content demand came out of the study.
One of the other crucial parts of this study was how your client will be measuring your content success. As per general rule of thumb. When you invest some money into any marketing campaign. You generally measure the success against the number of clients/deals you closed.
But there are several other measures currently in the fashion which helps SEO clients to understand how their investment is performing.
Some straightforward examples are shown below in the graphic.
These statistics give you an idea of were to concentrate when you are planning on your content strategy.
5) Publish & Manage Content.
The 5th and the last step of your content strategy plan; to publish your content and manage it. There are many ways you can publish your content. Now when you search for publishing and manage the content you will see lots of blog talking about.
- Host your content on WordPress
- Publish your content on custom software's
- Host your content and share it with your current customers etc.
Well, I don't want to talk about those points. Because if you are landed on this page then you might already be aware of platforms and tools you will need to publish your content.
The primary challenge is; where you could find opportunities to share your content so that you get maximum exposure. And that is what I want to talk about today.
I have posted lots of articles on different article directories. But according to my personal experience. There are very few which could actually generate some results. Hence I drafted a list for you which you could also use in order to maximise your conversions.
How to find online opportunities?
Here’s a list of some of the most popular sites that are looking for writers:
- Medium.com – Submit your post.
- Indie Hackers – Contribute.
- LinkedIn Publishing Network – How to submit your post.
- Business2Community – Become a contributor.
- Business Insider – How to contribute.
- BuzzFeed – Submit your community post.
- Entrepreneur.com – Become a contributor.
- Fast Company – Guidelines for submitting contributed articles.
- Forbes – Submitting an article.
- Harvard Business Review – Contributor guidelines.
- Huffington Post – Submit your pitch.
- Inc. Magazine – Contributing to Inc.
- Mashable – Submit news.
- Moz – YouMoz community guidelines.
- New York Times – How to submit an op-ed article.
- SocialMediaToday – How to post.
- TechCrunch – Submit your post.
(Tip): I use following Google Search terms in order to find some opportunities online.
- Your keyword + Become a contributor
- Your keyword + Write for us
- Your keyword + Guest post guidelines
- Your keyword + inurl:guest-post
- Your keyword + inurl: contribute
I hope you like this article.
PS: if you share it not only it will make my day, it will make my year. Thanks