Content marketing is the creation and distribution of relevant, engaging and on-brand content which appeals to your target audience and increases sales or conversions. A content marketing strategy is a plan which details how your business will use content to achieve set goals, how that content will be created and how it will be shared.
Types of content included in your content marketing strategy might include blog posts, landing page content, case studies, social media posts and PR. But what are the benefits to having a content marketing strategy in place – and why should your brand invest in creating its own strategy?
Like any marketing strategy, creating a content plan begins with establishing business goals. If it’s been a while since you assessed what you want your brand to achieve, making a start on your content marketing strategy offers a great opportunity to set achievable and profitable goals for your business.
It’s also an opportunity to get input from across your business on creative ways to promote your brand and engage with your audience.
It can sometimes be tricky to establish a connection with customers and potential customers, particularly if your business is online-only, or has made the switch to e-commerce in the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Producing relevant and consistent content will encourage your audience to engage with your business. Over time, this can help establish trust in your brand’s authority and make your website and social channels a great source of inspiration and knowledge.
Creating content which showcases your products and services will build brand awareness and generate more sales leads. During the planning of your content strategy, think about who your ideal customer is and the type of content they will engage with. Having this audience in mind will help you target the right people with your content, resulting in better quality leads.
Keeping your website regularly updated with relevant, high quality and optimised content can help to improve your SEO rankings. Blog posts, landing pages and case studies can all be optimised to boost their appearance in the search results, while also offering authoritative answers to the search queries your target audience might have.
Strike a balance between producing relevant content with the right frequency of new content or page updates. Fresh content will enhance your brand’s authority and your website’s performance in the search results. Google’s best practice for bloggers advises that “A frequently updated site encourages people to return – as long as your content remains relevant and engaging. A useful post once a week is better than low-quality content published daily.”
And always remember Google’s advice to “Make pages primarily for users, not for search engines”. First and foremost any content you create should be produced with your audience in mind, not Google.
Creating high quality, engaging and consistent content will also enhance brand awareness. It is one of the best ways to connect with both current and potential customers. In turn, this can lead to an increase in site traffic as your content is shared on social media and your SEO rankings improve.
Consider establishing brand guidelines if you don’t already have them. These guidelines can help ensure the content you produce is consistent, on-brand and in line with the values and image of your business. They can cover everything from brand colours, fonts and logos to tone of voice.
There are many places where customers and potential customers might find you online. Well-researched, relevant content can be repurposed for multiple platforms, ensuring that your content appears in a format that your target audience will engage with.
Understanding your target audience will help inform where your content should be distributed and the most effective forms of content to produce.
Data and analytics can provide valuable insight to inform your future content plans. Analysing how people interact with your content will reveal the type of content your target audience engages with and where you should focus your resources. In this way, your content marketing strategy will grow and evolve over time to become even more effective and profitable for your brand.