SEO and content marketing complement each other, and one without the other will not get you far when trying to rank higher on Google. Search engines like sites that are regularly updated with new quality content, and so a content marketing strategy is vital to your business.
It used to be enough for your content to be loaded with keywords, but now Google wants content that is more natural. To create natural, relevant content that will help you rank higher but also engage your audience, you need a well thought out content marketing strategy.
So let’s take a look at how to make your content marketing strategy more effective.
At the very core of your content marketing strategy is the audience. When making sure your content marketing strategy is up to scratch, you need to ensure that your content ideas are specific to your audience’s wants and needs. This can be difficult to consider, as your core audience can be broken down into smaller groups that all have different requirements.
Many marketers without extensive existing marketing research data take the time to create personas to reflect their audiences. This can be a good creative exercise to help narrow down your target audience. There is no point in trying to market generic content to the masses – it will not work.
Once you have a good idea on what groups you need to target with your content marketing, you need to think about the information that will be useful to them. What questions do your customers ask, or what questions are being asked within your industry? You will need to shape your strategy around these questions to get results.
The return on investment
When it comes to the ROI of your content marketing strategy, like with any other business strategy you need to know your end goal. Whether you are aiming on generating more leads, drive sales or generating brand awareness, your goals need to be at the heart of your decision making. Sometimes in the creative process, the objectives come second fiddle – don’t let this happen if you expect your strategy to generate good results.
Another important element to remember for your content marketing strategy is the types of content you will be using. The temptation may be to just create blog posts on a regular basis, but a variety of different content will achieve better outcomes.
Do bear in mind though that choosing your content types should not be a pick and mix – you need to once again consider the audience and the type of content they will respond well to. Infographics and videos are great visual content, but are they for everyone? Some people may prefer a simple blog post with images that offers advice and guidance in a more straightforward manner.
Putting your strategy together
To manage your content marketing strategy efficiently, create a spread sheet listing the month and year, type of content, title of your content, and your methods of sharing the content. Just as important as the actual content is your methods of promoting it to ensure you are reaching your intended audience. Whether by sharing on social media or via your e-newsletter, by mapping out your plans of when and where the content will be shared it reduces your chances of over or under promoting your content.
Remember that your strategy should spread your content across a chosen time frame – if you push forward with all your content at once, the ideas will soon run dry. Naturally, your content ideas may change based on industry news, so always consider your strategy a working document.