In today’s ever-crowding market, it’s becoming increasingly difficult for brands to stand out: with 3.5billion Google searches happening each and every day, and only 5% of all branded content getting the lion’s share of consumer engagement, marketers need to consider tactics with longevity, and this is where a kick-ass content marketing strategy comes into play.
The ultimate content marketing goal
Ultimately, through great content marketing, your brand will be seen as the expert in its field, increase social media reach and grow the business through attracting new customers. In order to achieve this it’s important to understand exactly what content marketing is – and this is where many marketers often fall foul.
Many marketers make the mistake of pinning a content marketing strategy onto a campaign and placing too much of a focus on the brand and its messaging, but it should be viewed as an ‘always on’ tool focused on the customer and what they want to see. It’s far too easy to slip into the habit of churning out the same old repetitive and dry content, packed full of brand mentions, which customers can’t relate to or don’t respond well to. So how can you make sure you content is hitting the mark, and how do you avoid getting lost in the masses?
At Prohibition we’ve developed an 8-step process which should lead you to a fool-proof content marketing strategy. If followed stringently, you could transform the perception of your brand online and start to see real return from your content.
Prohibitions Top Content Marketing Hacks
- Start by deciding your content objectives and your brand’s mission statement; If you start off with blurred lines and unclear objectives, your content will become confused and you’re ultimately working towards nothing! Make sure your objectives are clearly defined, whether you’re working towards an increase in sales, brand loyalty or awareness, and that you’re able to clearly track the results.
- Define your audience; Remember a great content marketing strategy doesn’t focus on your brands key messages, it focuses on what your target market wants to see. Define your audience, this could be in the form of brand personas, and do your research into them – it’s key to focus on creating the content your audience wants to see.
- Select the right topics; This is where you can make or break your content marketing strategy. In order to pick the right topics to be talking about, it’s not only key to focus on what your audience is crying out for, but you also need to consider where your brand’s expertise lie, whether there’s a gap in the market waiting for your content and what your unique perspective is. This is your chance to really stand out!
- Develop your content conversion strategy; This is the key link between the content you’re creating and your brand objectives – consider where your conversation with the customer begins and define what you consider to be a result. It’s also important here to make sure your content keeps on giving – think heavier, more permanent content which can be broken down into many different outputs and shared via multiple channels.
- Plan your editorial content; Mapping out your content strategy is key. Whether you favour weekly, monthly or yearly planners, follow our three-tiered approach; campaigns focusing on a given theme over a longer period of time (i.e. commercial objectives), projects focusing on a more short-term result (i.e. product launch), and finally regular updates/contact with your audience (i.e. social media).
- Create shareable content; Ultimately your content won’t deliver if there’s nothing shareable about it, and a key way to do this is to create content which sparks conversation – think collaboration with your audience, competitions, asking questions and jumping on current events… The list is endless! But just because you can share every piece of content across all social media platforms doesn’t mean you should, so consider where it’s best placed.
- Manage conversations and amplification; Content isn’t something you should put out into the world and forget about, it’s key to be engaging with your audience and managing those conversations you’re inviting. And, in this day and age, no content marketing strategy is complete without paid-for social media in order for you to maximise the potential of your (now perfectly curated) content.
- Measure your success; It’s important not only to be tracking the right metrics for the right channels, i.e. number of site visits for increasing website traffic, content downloads when looking to increase content consumption, but also to consider how these translate into the wider business’s commercial plans. So include three levels of success indicators in your measuring system; those with a direct impact on the company targets, those with a direct impact on the marketing targets, and those linked to the conversations concerning your brand.
Get in touch today for help with developing and implementing your own kick-ass content marketing strategy, and for a more in depth look at Prohibition’s 8 content marketing hacks.