Content marketing strategy should consist of several steps. Below are the steps that I think are essential for today’s quality content production and marketing. These exact steps are not “a must” for every business because no two businesses are the same, but this is more or less a universal approach that any business can use.
First of all, your content should stand out. Every day you get bombarded with multiple marketing messages. The Web is filled with average content which we perceive as “noise”. If you want your content to be perceived as “signal” then pay proper attention to Step 1.
Step 1: Prerequisites
This step includes:
- Answering the question:”What goal does this content piece solve? Why do we need it?”
If you cannot answer this question, then do not create this content.
- List compilation
Compile the list of all known resources that will help you both produce the content piece and amplify it.
Create a Mind Map of your content piece. I normally create a MindMap for the website I work on. I learned this approach from Jon Ball (Page One Power) during SMX 2012. Jon discussed the usage of this approach for link building back then, and I decided to adjust it a bit and to use it to identify the possible content topics.
- Target audience
I preach the approach of targeting a specific buying audience with each piece of content. (You can figure out whom you need to target by analyzing your leads)
- Trend checking
When preparing to create a new content piece, it might be useful to check the current trends either with Google Trends or other tools, to see what is gaining popularity. This step will also help you uncover hidden content topics.
- Title brainstorming
This element deserves a separate post. There are a number of things to cover here, but some of the most important things to remember are:
- The sole purpose of your article headline is to capture the attention of the reader and make them click/read on.
- Including a number might increase the number of clicks/page views.
- What you write in the article headline depends on the level of awareness of your target audience.
- “10x better than competitors” approach
I derived this element from multiple sources:
– Rand Fishkin (“10x Content” principle)
– Brian Dean (“Skyscraper Technique”)
– Matthew Woodward (long blog posts)
– Tony Robbins (“Take massive action.”)
– Grant Cardone (“10x concept”)
This means that your content should stand out in all senses and be 10 times better than other pieces of content on the Web on the same topic.
- “Social Overlapping”
This method helps you uncover new ideas for your content. I described this method in more detail in my previous post here.
Step 2: Content Publishing
At this stage, you actually publish the content piece on your website or somewhere else on the web. Ideally, you want to have tracking set up so that you could analyze the audience that reads and engages with your content.
Step 3: Content Amplification
- “The Content Roadshow” method (Brian Dean)
Announce the appearance of your content on the web.
- “Mention-to-Link” method
Look for mentions of your content topic on the web, and if you see the mentions on credible websites, contact the webmaster and ask them to turn that mention into a link.
- Links from related resource pages
Search Google for “your niche” + inurl:resources.html OR inurl:resources.aspx OR inurl:resources.php. For example: “dallas photographer” + inurl:resources.html OR inurl:resources.aspx OR inurl:resources.php
Then contact the webmaster and ask them to add a link to your content on that page.
- Offline marketing
If you use any kind of offline marketing, like direct mail or flyers, you can put a shortened link or a QR code on printed materials.
- Influencer Marketing
Identify the influencers/key figures in the topic your content is about. You might want to mention them in your content piece. When your article is live, reach out to them and let them know you mentioned them.
- Email blast to existing clients/partners
Use the email list of your existing clients/partners and share the piece of content with them.
- Partners’ Marketing Channels
If your company has partners and they have their own marketing channels to distribute content then you can attempt to tap into their channels. These can be email lists, social media profiles, direct mail, true fans/tribes, etc. See, if your content can get a mention through these channels.
- Internal announcement
Announce the appearance of your content piece by emailing your team members and asking them to share it with their networks.
- Homepage promotion
Put the link to the content piece on the home page of your website for better visibility.
- Content Repurposing
Repurpose your content into a different form. For example, you can take a video, transcribe it, and then make several tweets out of the transcript. Or you can make slides and put them on SlideShare. An article can be turned into an infographic. You can find more ideas here.
If this post is helpful to you, either share it with people you care about or follow me on Instagram: @slavarybalka