The goal of your digital content strategy is to determine what digital material will attract your target audience. It doesn’t just mean attracting sales – it can simply mean getting people to share your digital content or become dedicated fans of your brand, which leads to business growth down the line.
You will need to set clearly defined goals, analyse your audience, and sketch out how they engage with content so that you create content they will not ignore.
Will they be entertained or educated by your content? Will they save it for further reference? Will they become convinced that you know your trade, that your business can fulfil their needs? Will they contact you?
In the end, the way you create a content strategy will be unique to your business and its needs. There is no one-size-fits-all approach. There are, however, a few key strategies that will put you on the correct track.
Before you begin generating content, focus on the following seven goals.
Define your message
Before you dive into the particulars of your online marketing strategy and begin brainstorming content covering wide ranges of topics, start with the simple stuff. Start by defining your brand’s core message to the world.
When defining this goal, it is wise to focus on the positives of your business. What do you wish to contribute to humanity?
A statement that is negative and detractive in nature, such as “we are sick of the low standards of most businesses in our field,” is best left to the politicians.
By focussing on the positives, on the constructive work being done for the public, instead of pessimistic doom and gloom, your brand will be an inspiration.
This makes for a stronger introduction than bogging the reader down in a long list of promises.
Research your target market
The first error marketers make is that they rely too heavily on their own knowledge and intuition. This leads them trying to reach out to everyone with a strategy that simply doesn’t reach everyone. You don’t know everyone. In content marketing, gut instinct is important, but market research fills in your blind spots.
Learn more about your primary and secondary audiences by doing research. Also, don’t be scared to combine qualitative and quantitative information.
Before you can reach out to your audience, you must first make sure you know how to.
To learn more about your current clients’ demographics, habits, and preferences, you can conduct interviews with them. What magazines and newspapers do they read on a regular basis? What is their educational level? What are their hobbies? What are their most pressing issues? What topics pique their attention the most? What social media platforms do they gravitate towards?
You’ll also want to gather high-level data on age, industry, business name, title, and so on for a general readership.
Conduct an SEO audit
70-80% of the time a website is found, it’s because of a search engine.
Once you have identified your audience, research how they use search engines such as Google.
You need to know what people type into Google when they’re looking for a business that provides your services. The words that they google most are called “keywords”.
Compile a list of primary and secondary keywords.
The main keyword phrase for a Melbourne plumbing business is, “Melbourne plumber”, to no surprise. A secondary keyword phrase might be “Melbourne pipe unclogging”. It’s essential to have some specialised keywords for audiences looking for common, but specific things.
Remember that people aren’t googling for any singular business. They’re stumbling upon businesses online that happen to be linked to the phrases that are googled.
Check our list of great ways to utilise search engine optimisation (SEO) in your copywriting.
Perform a gap analysis
Now that brands are acting like publishers, they are also competing with them. To provide distinctive content and stand out, you must understand what you are up against.
Write a list of ways your audience likes to interact with brands online and compare it to what they currently receive from your direct competitors. The gaps that you find will show you undelivered, desirable content that you can supply.
The problem with a lot of online content is that it isn’t particularly distinguishing or creative.
A formal gap analysis may be performed manually in a spreadsheet or using scraping tools such as BuzzSumo. In any case, your aim is to see how rivals approach content, what topics they cover, and how well the material performs.
You’ll have what you need to stand out if you analyse your competitors’ weaknesses.
Define your buyer’s journey
Every content marketer must work with the full “buyers’ journey” in mind.
The first step is to establish brand awareness, to gently welcome the viewer into your website or social media without pressuring them to make a financial decision which is a turn-off for many internet browsers. This is done through publishing non-self-promotional blog entries, infographics, films, and social media postings.
Brand-awareness material sometimes gets a bad name because it does not directly feed sales. Some reject it as meaningless and worthless.
Consider it this way:
Before making a major purchase of your own, you usually conduct research and seek out reliable sources that assist you in making the right purchase. You’re most likely to look up online reviews, ask questions in local community groups, compare prices and sus out various websites. There’ll be a natural development. You will locate a few companies that you really like. Your curiosity will be piqued.
“We can help,” as opposed to “click here, purchase now, and add to cart,” is a completely different message to receive at this stage of your journey.
So you should aim for a balance.
In other words, before advertising your products, simply help people by educating and entertaining them.
Create a content marketing distribution plan
Marketers post blogs and hope that everyone reads them. That isn’t a plan; it’s simply wishful thinking.
Content distribution needs the same amount of foresight and preparation as content development.
Everybody opens up to marketers from somewhere. Where does your audience open up to digital content?
Your target audience may be on LinkedIn if they work in finance. Twitter is a favourite hangout for those of us in the media and marketing industries. Retailers are likely to be interested in experimenting with Instagram. And then there’s Facebook, which appears to reach the majority of people.
Using social media to distribute your material can help you acquire an audience and begin to interact with them. Instead of getting into paid distribution right away, start with free distribution. Start with answering small questions. Start by opening the door.
Make a content marketing schedule
Execute the strategy. Schedule the material you’ll generate during the first two or three months. Make a realistic list of deadlines that your company can meet. Plan to routinely offers fresh, captivating content. Put the release date and title of each piece in your calendar.
All of the research you conduct on attractive subjects, formats, keywords, and other elements should be incorporated into this planning.
We’ve previously proven that poor content won’t help you rank higher in Google. Address any pain points your audience may have with your content and how it is presented to them.
Finally, be open and honest about your financial situation. It’s easy to get carried away and commit to publishing every day.
It’s a cliche, but when it comes to creating a routine of publishing, it’s usually simpler to gradually increase content when there is proven demand for it. It’s better to self-publish conservatively instead of wasting time and money producing content that doesn’t work.
For more advice about content that will attract your target audience, contact us today!