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5 Steps to Creating a Content Marketing Strategy That Actually Works

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Content marketing is the gold mine for driving great business outcomes, as lots of buyers depend on content to make purchases. Statistics show that 60% of customers are inspired to seek out a product after reading about it. A good content marketing strategy can make all the difference for your brand, which is why 82% of marketers actively use content marketing. You, too, can create a good content marketing strategy that works, and in this article, I will show you how.

First, let’s cover the basics. What is a content strategy, exactly? A content strategy is a plan for creating content that facilitates your business goal. It helps you create the right brand awareness content that can influence your buyer’s decision for every stage of the sales funnel to drive leads and conversions.

Out of the various marketing strategies that are available to marketers, content marketing is a cost-effective approach for long-term lead generation. Evergreen content can continue driving organic traffic from searches to your website and generating conversions. For example, an informative blog post that is embedded with product links can keep leading users to your product long after it is published.

Also, content marketing is great for brand awareness and can serve as a channel for other marketing tactics to flourish. While your content can establish your brand as an authority to be referenced in your industry, it can also drive the outcome of sponsored ads, influencer marketing and similar marketing strategies. Now, let’s get into the five steps it takes to create an effective marketing strategy:

Related: What Is a Content Strategy and Why Do I Need It?

1. Know your goal

Starting out any plan means you have a goal waiting to be attained. The goal of your content marketing strategy should be tied to brand awareness, leads, conversions and customer retention.

Whatever you intend to achieve with your content marketing should be well-defined. This will help you determine how to create your content marketing strategy and the key performance indicators (KPIs) to look out for in deciding the effectiveness of your content marketing strategy.

2. Do buyer persona research

Buyers are 48% more likely to consider service providers that have a personalized marketing strategy. Your content is for your target buyers. Therefore, you have to know who your target buyers are so you can decide the best way to sell your content to them.

After identifying your target buyers, tailor your content marketing strategy to accommodate your ideal buyer’s content preferences and behavior. For instance, a corporate manager for a multinational may look for products and service information differently from a small family business owner. Also, a middle-aged user may have different content preferences and responses to a marketing strategy than a Gen Z user.

3. Develop content ideas

Your content ideas will drive the engagement that the content marketing strategy enjoys. Relevant content is always a good place to start, and it is crucial for every stage of a buyer’s journey. Below are a few things that can help in developing content ideas.

  • Do a content audit:

    • Knowing how previous content performed can help you decide what works for your audience. This involves observing the data analytics of your content.

    • High-performing content can inspire you to work on similar content or update and repurpose old content. Low-performing content can be an indicator of what you can improve on when creating content.

  • Focus on brand awareness:

    • Your content is meant to push your brand as a credible authority in your industry. This means you have to set yourself apart from competitors in the industry. To do this, you have to let your audience know what makes you unique through your content while showing them you are trustworthy by solving their problems.

    • Most users look at the content to find solutions. Therefore, your content should indicate that you understand their pain point and you are able to solve it because you have the solution. Content that portrays such confidence is instrumental to generating conversions for your products.

  • Content frequency:

    • If you are using content marketing for your brand, the frequency of your content is key in keeping you consistently in the view of your audience. This means you have to consider creating the kind of content that allows you the room to be consistent. A good way to start is to look into industry trends and constantly engage your audience to know what they want to see.

Related: How To Create Better Content And Grow Your Business

4. Determine your content format and delivery channels

Depending on your target audience, your content format can come as infographics, videos, podcasts or more. This also goes for the platforms you choose to deliver your content. For example, TikTok is predominantly used by young people, which means it could be the ideal delivery channel for your content if your audience falls within that demographic of users. In addition, it means your content has to be predominantly videos.

5. Track the performance of your content strategy

Knowing the progress state of your content marketing strategy means you can determine whether or not you are close to your goal. This is great because you get to decide what needs to change or continue. You can track the progress of your content marketing strategy using content management system tools and KPIs. These KPIs could be based on the number of leads, conversions or organic traffic recorded as a result of your content marketing.

Content marketing strategy examples

  • Evernote SEO writing
    • This note-taking app uses an SEO-driven content strategy to attract traffic to its website. For example, posts like How to Stay Disciplined when Times are Tough appear for search queries on “how to stay disciplined.” This can trigger users to make use of the app and the services provided by Evernote after reading the content.

    • This content marketing strategy is great for driving leads and conversions to the brand while providing users with useful information that also focuses on brand awareness.

  • Spotify Wrapped playlists:
    • Towards the end of the year, Spotify rounds up all the music a user has listened to in a year and breaks it down into genres, artists, years and other classifications. A personalized playlist is created for the user based on their most listened-to songs. The user also gets an option of sharing the wrapped playlist on their social media. This creates a social media trend for the brand campaign every year.

Related: 6 Key Tips to Level Up Your Content Marketing Strategy

The great thing about this content marketing strategy is that new users are converted as a result of the online frenzy, which many will want to be a part of, whilst existing users have something to look forward to. With these tips and examples in mind, you now know how content marketing strategies work and how to create one. Next steps? Create!

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