6 Steps to an Excellent Content Marketing Strategy

Devising an effective content marketing strategy is very important for the content of any website to get the recognition it should get. Just churning out great content is not enough, but marketing such type of great content to fulfill the goals of the website in terms of user experience (UX), user engagement and conversions is also an important factor. However, devising an effective content marketing strategy is not an easy task. It consists of various number of steps such as market research, site audits, content audits, customer surveys and interviews to enlist just a few of the steps. Below a six step content marketing strategy framework is presented to give a comprehensive idea about the process involved in devising an effective content marketing strategy.

Effective Content Marketing Strategy
Devising a comprehensive and an effective content marketing strategy is not an easy task.

Step 1: Comprehensive Research of the Company Involved

One should have a fundamentally strong understanding about the company for which the content strategy is to be devised. The entire working of the company is to be understood like the back of one’s hand in order to devise a good content marketing strategy for it. Hence, in this process a lot of questions need to be asked to the client. These questions may include but not be limited to what is the business model of the company? How does the company bring revenue? What specific products or services of the company bring in the most revenue? What is the reason for that particular product or service in netting the most revenue? Why and where are the other products or services lacking?

Then after these fundamental questions have been answered, the questionnaire moves to the sales section of the company and you may ask questions like how is the sales team structured and on what metrics are they measured by? Then comes the turn of knowing about the existing customer base of the company and how does the company attract their customers? What kind of methods they use to attract customers and how do they stack up against each other? Then, the last part of the questionnaire is devoted fully to understand the existing content generation process of the company. Questions have to be asked like are there any editorial guidelines that are being followed currently? What is the internal process to get the content approved? What kind of content is being produced currently? What kind of branding, if any, is the company engaging in?

Effective Content Strategy Model
Both the company and the customer have to be researched comprehensively for devising an effective content strategy

Step 2: Data Collection

After getting the information about the company, next step is to get comprehensive information regarding the content and the website of the company and the type of customers it is targeting and attracting. The more the type of content produced currently and the customer are understood properly, the more robust will be the outcome of a good content marketing strategy. It is also important to understand what type of content we want to produce and for this it is imperative that the customer be understood in detail. This can be done in a number of ways, and one of them is competitor analysis. You need to research aspects like and gather data on what types of content are your competitors producing and how much traction are such type of contents gaining in terms of user engagement? Are there enough comments on their blog posts? How many shares their Facebook posts have got?

After this comes the keyword research. One needs to understand what kind of keywords are we targeting and what kind of keywords are needed to be targeted to bring traffic. What and how are the landing pages for such keywords? What kind of viewership and user engagement does the current combination of keyword and landing page bring? Then comes the role of market research and customer surveys. At this stage, the surveys may vary depending on whether the company is B2B or B2C. Some of the questions that may be asked to your B2B clients include demographic related questions like occupation, industry, job, title, age and gender for any particular customer. Then you have to probe the customer more regarding how long you have been a customer for that particular company? How likely are you to recommend the specific product or service of the company to others? Then specific product or service related questions should be asked.

Step 3: Preparation and Assessment

After all the necessary data has been collected from various sources, it is very important to assess the data that has been collected and correlate with the data that you already have on hand. Meaningful interpretations have to be obtained about the company and its services, the services it is offering and the kind of customers it is targeting. In addition, in depth information should be available regarding the customers it is engaging with and the type of content this is being produced currently and the future targets thereof. In the world of measurable metrics and analytic s, you should take care to measure the following analytic s before and after the creation of the content.

There are traffic, page views, pages per visit, average time on website, entrances/exits, conversion rate, bounce rate, page authority, rankings, etc. Once such type of metrics have been established, it is time for carrying out a comprehensive content audit. The purpose of content audit is to evaluate how the previous content on the site has performed and as well as to determine the future direction of the website in terms of the content.

After going through this comprehensive and research intensive process, the company gets a clear idea regarding what opportunities are present in the website content and how it can be leveraged in order to get the maximum viewership and conversions. During this research process, not only the content is audited, but the process involved in the generation of such content is also audited and evaluated and recommendations are made right from the stage when the content is conceived in the mind of the owner or writer to its execution stage where that particular piece is uploaded on the website. The tone, voice and the style of content is also studied and improvements are made.

Step 4: Prospecting

During this process, the channels through which traction for the content that has been produced are studied and various refinements are made on the type of content to be generated so that it suits the particular traction method that has been chosen for the promotion of the content produced. Also, during this stage, it is important for the company to keep itself abreast of the specific industry news it is involved in and keep on top of the content that its competitors are creating. This will give a streamlined approach and will help in identifying clearly the strengths and weaknesses of the company’s own content produced and the kind of traction method that is to be used in order to stay ahead of its competitors.

Step 5: Creating and Promoting the Content

Now, the process of creating the actual content after all the above listed processes is started and care is taken to ensure that the content created follows both the internal protocols and processes that were established in the step three of the process. In addition, whosoever is responsible for the content produced has to take care that editorial standards are being followed and assess that content that is being creating is actually doing the job it is supposed to do. The content that has been created has to confirm to the checklist of is the content credible? The content has also be informative and should be easy to understand. The content has to be useful and something must be in the content to make it exceptional to the customers.

Promotion of the Content Produced Through the Right Channels
Promotion of the content produced through the right channels is very important part of content marketing strategy

Step 6: Assess the Performance of Content

After the content has been uploaded on the website following all mentioned above processes, it is not time to evaluate the content produced and promoted. Now it is time to answer that how a particular piece of content has performed, what teachings did that particular piece of content give to the company editors and are there any changes to be made in the process. In addition all the data that has been received in the form of website analytic has to be assessed concerning that particular piece of content.

The long term goal of the editor or the content writer should be that the content produced is able to fulfill the original goals of the content marketing strategy. Over a passage of time, producing such type of engaging and informative content should become easier, more clearly as leanings are developed and iterated every time. Even though the process seems to be resource intensive in the beginning, as time progresses, the goal is that producing effective and meaningful content for the company becomes a norm rather than the exception. The other aim is to significantly up the quality of the content that is produced through the process mentioned above and the audiences should be able to lap up the content produced.

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