Having a solid content strategy for each piece of your content marketing plan is an important final step of the planning process. You want to have a clear idea of the content you need to create and how it will benefit your audience.
“If you’re not putting out relevant content in relevant places, you don’t exist,” says celebrity entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk. This gets to the heart of content strategy: if you’re content isn’t valuable and if nobody sees it, then creating it was a wasted effort.
Are You Selling or Engaging?
In the age of cord-cutting and ad-blockers, advertisers are facing an uphill battle. This is where content marketing comes in. But if the content you’re creating feels like a sales pitch, then it’s a wasted effort.
Good SEO is always important, but it shouldn’t get in the way of fulfilling your content’s mission. Whether it’s a blog post or knowledge base article, keep your reader interested. The goal of good content marketing is to have a conversation … you should talk with your readers, not at them.
Sticking to that goal means using your content to help people, not sell to them. When you craft your sales funnel, your content marketing will be the honey that lures potential customers deeper in.
Your content doesn’t directly sell your product or service because it doesn’t have to – the process does the selling.
What Value Does Your Content Have?
The only reason content exists is to be useful to someone. That usefulness can come from it’s entertainment value, so it doesn’t have to read like a user manual to be useful. But within the context of what your audience expects, your content must fulfill that need.
Creating useful content comes from understanding its purpose. This is where your content marketing plan helps. Having a clear understanding of the reason your blog, online community or social media campaign exists will help you create the best content for the situation.
Note also that content isn’t just blog posts or white papers. It can take a variety of shapes. Stickers, online quizzes, top-10 lists and store finders are all examples of content strategies used to provide some value to an audience.
How Do You Measure Success?
The only thing more important than being successful is being successful by a realistic measure. If you sell products online, it doesn’t matter how many Facebook likes your business page has or that your email list has 500,000 addresses if you don’t make sales.
Not that having 500,000 email addresses on your mailing list is a bad thing. However, without the proper insight and constant course correction, you’ll be leaving your audience at the door.
When developing a content strategy plan, determine what specific metrics align with your vision of success. Then consider if this supports the success of your marketing strategies.If your business goal is to make money from advertising and your marketing strategy is to produce entertaining YouTube videos, then views, likes and subscribers will all be important key performance indicators.