Last updated on 13th June 2023 at 21:21 by Alex Nicholas
A successful marketing strategy incorporates all aspects of the marketing mix and is tailored to meet the specific needs of the business. A well-crafted marketing strategy will help a business achieve its goals and objectives and can be used as a roadmap to guide decision-making. There are many factors to consider when asking yourself what should a content marketing strategy include, so it is important to take a comprehensive approach and look at all the different aspects of your marketing plan.
What is a Content Marketing Strategy?
A content marketing strategy is a plan that outlines how you will use content to reach your target audience and achieve your business goals. This plan encompasses what kind of content you will create, where you will publish it, and how you will promote it. Having this strategy in place will help you to stay focused on your goals and ensure that your content is working to achieve them.
Why Create a Content Marketing Strategy?
Your business needs a content marketing strategy for the same reason that you need a business plan or any other kind of strategic plan. A content marketing strategy ensures that you are clear on your objectives and how you will reach them. It also helps to ensure that all of your content marketing efforts tie back to your business.
We've discovered that not only do you need a plan, but you also have to keep notes on it. The best way to do this is to create a content marketing calendar, which lets you keep track of what content you have created and when. This can be as simple as a spreadsheet or as complex as a dedicated project management tool, depending on the size of your business and the amount of content you produce.
What Should Be Included in a Marketing Strategy?
There are several different elements that should be included in your marketing strategy. Below is our list of the 5 crucial components that are a must for creating any effective marketing strategy:
What are your goals for the material you're going to create, and how will you know whether it has been successful in achieving those goals?
Who wouldn't want to create incredible material that will encourage casual site visitors to become repeat customers who spend a lot of money with you? If you want to attract more customers and boost your sales, talk about how you will use content to reach those goals.
Knowing this stuff in advance allows you to swiftly dismiss the creation of anything that won't help you meet these objectives. What's the use in creating a blog post, for example, if it won't encourage visitors to take the next step in your conversion funnel?
Isn't it true that you can get more organic traffic if you have a large social media following? What's the point of pouring your efforts into developing a huge social media audience if none of them ever visit your site?
Some people will tell you that you need to create content for the sake of creating content. They'll say that any piece of content, no matter how small, is better than nothing. We strongly disagree with this way of thinking. Here's why:
Content marketing should be a deliberate and strategic process. Every piece of content you create should have a specific purpose and goal. If it doesn't, then it's a waste of your time and resources.
For a more detailed guide, check out our guide on the importance of blogging for your business and how it can help you.
2. Audience Assessment
Your marketing strategy should also include an understanding of your audience and the different stages they are at in their buyer's journey.
This will help you when creating website content for each stage, as well as identify the best channels to reach them on.
For example, someone who is in the micro-moment stage is looking for immediate and relevant information about a particular topic, such as the best products to buy for a new home. They will likely turn to search engines and social media for this information.
As a result, you would create content that is informative and highly targeted, such as articles, blog posts, and lists that provide specific product recommendations. You would also focus your social media efforts on creating content or running paid ads that target this micro-moment.
Another important part of your content marketing strategy should be the creation of personas. This is a fictional representation that represents your ideal customer and covers their demographics, behaviours, motivations, and goals.
Creating personas can help you to understand your audience in more detail and create content that is catered to their specific needs. It can also help you to determine which marketing channels are most likely to reach them.
To create a persona, you need to gather data about your target audience. You can do this through market research, surveys, interviews, and social media listening. Once you have this data, you can start to create a detailed profile of your ideal customer.
Some key information that you should include in your persona is:
- Demographics: This includes their gender, age, income level, location, marital status, etc.
- Behaviours and motivations: What are their interests, how do they spend their time, and what drives them to take action?
- Goals: What are their short-term and long-term goals?
Once you have created your persona, you can use it to guide all of your content marketing efforts. Every piece of content you create should be targeting your persona and help them to achieve their goals.
4. Competitor analysis
There's no need to be embarrassed about taking a peek at what your key rivals are doing. Everything is a remix, and there's no shame in taking inspiration from your competitors.
When creating your marketing strategy, it's important to conduct a thorough analysis of your competitors. This will help you to identify the areas where you excel, as well as the strategies that are working for your competitors.
One of the first steps in a competitor analysis is to conduct a thorough review of your competitor's websites and social media profiles. This will give you an idea of the content they are creating, as well as the keywords and search terms they are targeting.
Analyse what works for them and what should be avoided. Examine their blogs, page content, and product descriptions; as well as their email newsletters, and any other marketing materials. Also, take a look at their website design, overall branding, and user experience (UX).
You should also look at how your competitors are promoting their content. This can include things like paid ads, social media campaigns, and email marketing. You can then use this information to adapt and improve your own content promotion efforts.
By conducting a thorough analysis of your competitors, you can gain valuable insights that will help you to create a marketing strategy that is both effective and efficient.
However, a competitive analysis can seem like a daunting task, especially for the owner of a busy company. And it's not something that should be undertaken by someone with limited SEO experience, so if you need a freelance SEO consultant to carry out this task, I'd be only too happy to help.
5. Keyword Research
Another important aspect of your content marketing strategy should be the use of keywords. These are the words and phrases that your target audience is likely to use when searching for the products or services that you offer.
There are a number of different tools and strategies that you can use to identify the best keywords for your business. One of the most popular methods is to perform keyword research and competitive analysis.
This involves using a variety of different tools to research the keywords that your competitors are targeting, as well as those being used by your target audience. These tools will also provide you with valuable insights into the levels of competition for each keyword and the search volumes for each term.
Once you have completed your keyword research, you can begin using these keywords in your content. Remember to use them naturally, as stuffing your content full of keywords will not only turn off your readers but could also result in search engine penalties or demotions.
How to Create a Content Strategy
Creating a content strategy can be challenging, especially if you are new to the world of content marketing.
With all that we've discussed previously about what a marketing strategy should include, we have just the right recipe laid out below to help you create a killer content strategy:
1. Start with your target audience.
Conduct demographic and behavioural research to understand who you are targeting, what their needs, interests, and goals are, and how you can best reach them.
2. Create buyer personas for your target audience.
Use the information from your research to create detailed buyer personas that will help you to understand your target audience on a deeper level.
3. Define your goals and objectives.
What do you want to achieve with your content marketing strategy? Be specific, and make sure that your goals are aligned with your overall business goals.
4. Research and analyse your competitors.
This can include reviewing their websites, social media profiles, and marketing materials; as well as conducting keyword research to see what keywords they are targeting.
5. Perform keyword research.
Use a variety of different tools and strategies to identify the best keywords for your business, and make sure to use them in a natural and strategic way.
6. Create a content plan.
Outline what types of content you will create, as well as a timeline for when you plan to publish it. Remember to include things like blog posts, infographics, videos, eBooks, and more.
7. Promote your content.
Once you've created your content, make sure that you are promoting it effectively and efficiently. This can include things like paid ads, social media campaigns, outreach to bloggers within your niche, email marketing, and more.
With all of this information in mind, you should be well on your way to creating a content marketing strategy that will help you to achieve your business goals in no time!
Creating a content marketing strategy can be challenging, but it's definitely worth the effort. By conducting thorough research into your target audience and competitors, you can create a strategy that is both effective and efficient. Don't forget to use keywords naturally in your content and promote it effectively to see results!