Last week we published a blog post titled How to Plan a Successful Content Marketing Strategy. We hope that you found the information in it useful and that the article had in some way helped you jumpstart one or more content marketing initiatives. There is no need to fret if the content marketing plan is still not fully developed. We encourage you to sign up for one of our online digital marketing courses or contact one of our customized corporate training specialists for more in-depth advice and personalized training.
For those of you that have created your content marketing plan and are ready to move on to the next stage, this article will teach you how to create your exceptional content. Before we delve into the topic of content creation, it is important to note that ‘content’ means many things. Written articles play an integral part in your content and SEO strategy, but there are lots of other options out there. Instead of focusing on one type of content or randomly ‘having a go’ at all of them, think about what the best form (e.g. infographics, videos, cartoons).would be for engaging your audience at various stages in the sales cycle.
How to Create Great Content in 6 Easy Steps | Digital Marketing Corporate Training
Did you know that nearly 2/3 of businesses do not have a documented content marketing strategy? That is according to the latest research from the Content Marketing Institute (CMI). Do not be that business that wastes valuable time and resources on content that does not sit well with consumers. Follow these 6 easy steps.
1. Setup Your Blog
If you have not yet set up your blog or have not found a place to host the content, now is the time to do it. Luckily, there are tons of great and easy ways to set up your own blog that go from ready-to-use platforms (e.g., WordPress) to fully customizable templates.
But before we can make any suggestions, we need you to answer the following question honestly. Do you want to build your own platform or use someone else’s? What we mean here is: Do you want to build your own blog on WordPress or through a ready-to-go content management system? Or Do you want to host your content on an external domain like Medium (writing), YouTube (video), or Apple (Podcasts)?
Building your own website gives you, the webmaster, lots of flexibility and freedom. However, it also means a more upfront and ongoing time investment and potential development costs. You are also starting from scratch, meaning you have no audience, which can make it tough to get your content noticed at first.
On the other hand, using a pre-existing platform like Medium, YouTube, and Apple Podcasts for content creation means less customization, but has less startup costs. This choice also means instant access to an audience that is already hooked on the platform and is actively seeking good content.
2. Assess Your Audiences’ Interests and Preferences
Before you start making something you want your audience to take time out of their day to look at and be influenced by, it is important to make note of their interests and preferences.
Your audience’s social timeline is the perfect place to start your research. What sort of content does your audience tend to share and like the most (e.g., video posts and image posts)? What sort of videos and images are they most influenced by? Is the content professionally created or is it produced using smart phone cameras and memes? Adopting the styles of your audience is not the only thing that is important. Constantly refining your content creation and sharing strategies to reflect current trends and interests is important as well.
The most important thing to remember is to be authentic. This often means being early. There is nothing worse than a company trying to jump on a trend months after it is dropped out of popular usage. By regularly monitoring what is going on in your target audience on social, you will be better equipped to discover impactful trends before they have been picked up by the mainstream media.
3. Establish your KPIs
The only way to ensure that you are reaching your goals is to make them SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely). This means establishing key performance indicators (KPIs) for your content campaign. The KPIs you set will help you know when you have achieved your goals
Usually, KPIs will have specific numbers in them. For example, you might want to:
- Hit a target of $__________ each month, quarter, or year.
- Get ____ new email subscribers each day, week, or month.
- Obtain ____ contact form submissions each day, week, or month.
- See an increase in site traffic and in engagement by ____% in 3 months, 6 months, or a year from now.
- Improve the search ranking of some of your key pages to help boost traffic
Feel free to customize these KPIs and use them in your campaigns.
4. Gather Resources
Now that you know what type of content you are planning to create, who it is for, and where you are planning to share it, it is important to make sure you have everything you need to deliver on your content marketing strategy. That involves answering questions like:
- Who’s in charge of producing and maintaining content?
- What human, physical or digital tools and resources do you need to create the content?
- What will your publishing workflow look like, including content scheduling?
5. Create a Content Schedule
As part of your content strategy, you will need to know exactly when to publish your content on each of the platforms you have selected. It is recommended to use a content calendar to schedule your content as much in advance as possible.
There are several tools to help you schedule your content. For example, you can use Google Calendar and simply put the due dates for each piece of content there. That works pretty well, especially if you’re not publishing a lot of content. Another option is to use a productivity or task management tool like CoSchedule to help you stay on track. This tool will come into good use if you are delegating content to other content writers and publishing 20+ pieces on a monthly basis.
6. Develop and Distribute the Content
The last and final step is to start writing your content! At this point, you will have to think about how to reflect your authenticity and brand identity in your content. You can be super-professional, very casual, or something in between. And you will have to manage the balance between showing your expertise and not patronizing your audience. The sky is all yours to let your creativity shine.
Once the content has been written, you will need to distribute and market it too. That’s because you won’t get the results you want unless these are done (e.g., shared) correctly. For example, you will need to:
- Set a schedule for sharing your content on social media, both immediately, and through a drip campaign via a tool.
- Use email marketing to distribute your content to subscribers.
- Notify any influencers mentioned in your content to spread the word even wider.
About yourDMAC | Online Social Media & Digital Marketing Courses & Training
yourDMAC is committed to your success in content marketing (e.g., blogging). Our online digital marketing course sets up all professionals, whether novice or experienced, for success and helps them develop winning strategies that transforms their business. Alternatively, we offer customized corporate training workshops to senior executives and their staff. We work collaboratively with all businesses, both big and small, to understand their corporate vision, goals and objectives and help develop winning strategies that will lead them to success in the least amount of time. Contact us today and see how we can put your digital marketing career on the right track.