You may have heard that content is king in this digitally connected age. Here are 5 simple steps to get the ball rolling with some excellent content marketing in your business.
1. Define Your Goals
You can’t go anywhere without a goal. Set concrete goals for your marketing attempt, such as fortifying your connection with a particular audience or branching out to new ones.
We use a simple tool to plan and achieve our goals. Widely used in the business community, goals can be defined using the acronym SMART, which stands for:
For any business, the size of your customer list or database is an asset to the organisation. In the context of a digital business, a large-sized database is essential for the growth of your business. If your conversion rate is generally 20%, consider the difference between 20% of a database size of 1,000 contacts, versus one with 10,000 contacts – your revenue outcome will be very different.
Using SMART, this is how we lay out a growth plan:
- Establish a SPECIFIC target size of your database
- Set fixed TIME goals for 3 months, 6 months and 12 months.
- Make sure your goals are ACHIEVABLE – Ask yourself how many contacts can you acquire during these periods? For the short term, we look at the 3 month goal and look at each month’s activities. Review the conversion rates for your lead magnet, any events you might be running, or your quiz funnel.
- Check that your content is RELEVANT. Consider what can be improved – content type and length, frequency of posts, audience interests (if you are running Facebook ads)
- Use tools to ensure your results are MEASURABLE against a baseline. Monitor the monthly metrics and make adjustments where necessary.
With tools like Google Analytics and HotJar available today (more about them below), you can easily monitor your progress.
2. Define Your Audience
Who are you marketing your product or service to? If you don’t have a clear vision about this, you’ll be wasting your time and money trying to market to everyone—which is sort of like throwing everything on the wall and hoping something sticks.
Instead, build a vision of your ideal audience. Think about these key areas:
- Demographic information
- What are their interests? Where do they like to ‘hang out’, dine, shop?
- What are their primary emotions before they buy your product or service?
- What do they secretly wish was true in their situation in relation to buying your product or service?
Perhaps even develop a storyboard about the ‘typical’ person in this group to fill out your marketing attempts with genuine copy.
HubSpot has a free tool that you can use to create your own buyer persona and allows you to be fairly granular in terms of describing them (https://www.hubspot.com/make-my-persona).
3. Define Your Style
What exactly is your brand all about, and what’s the accompanying style that best matches your message?
If you bounce all over the place with your words and your appearance, you’re going to confuse your audience and lose potential customers. Solidify the details about your appearance – everything from colour schemes to fonts to content topics. Most importantly, be consistent in your branding throughout all your communications, marketing and customer touchpoints. This helps to build brand recognition and enhance top-of-mind recall.
One of our favourite tools for helping us define a brand’s identity is this brand quiz by Kaye Putnam (https://www.kayeputnam.com/).
4. Learn From The Past
Chances are, if you’ve been in business for a few years, you already have some existing content out there.
Take a look at what did well, and what bombed, and try to figure out why. Build on your success, and stay away from failure as you move forward.
Key tools to use:
Google Analytics (https://analytics.google.com/analytics/web/) is the best means of analysing your website traffic, as well as measuring your advertising ROI. It helps you understand your customers better by identifying which countries they are coming from, what devices they prefer to use to visit your site, which pages on your website need improving, and more.
Hotjar (https://www.hotjar.com/) is a heat map tool that creates a colour representation of how a user navigates your site. It helps you to understand which sections are more popular with your users. You can use it to gain insights on your lead generation forms, feedback forms, sales pages, landing pages and more.
5. Make A Plan
Map out key digital calendar events: What are key event dates for your business? Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Single’s Day (11:11) and, depending on your niche, these events could also be relevant: World Mental Health Day, Earth Day, Oktoberfest.
Have you downloaded our FREE editorial calendar guide? If not, click on this link: https://www.pollyannaconsulting.com/editorial-calendar-guide/
Set up checkpoints, goals, and deadlines: Just like goals are crucial for creating a destination, a plan is crucial for getting to those goals.
Some tips for checkpoints:
- What are your previous open rates for your emails?
- How many clicks did you get on your blog article?
- Which post is getting more engagement?
- When was the last time you checked whether your keywords are relevant?
- What can you do to improve engagement, e.g. do more videos vs posts?
- Is your lead magnet still effective in converting?
Keep track of analytics: Use analytic software that we’ve shared earlier to track clicks and see what parts of the strategy are working. Use A/B split tests to analyse the performance of images, email subject lines, ad headlines.
This guide should provide you with the resources you need to get your content marketing strategy up and running. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.