Before you start off with content marketing, you need to put together your content strategy. Your content strategy depends on various factors: the industry you are in, the audience you are targeting and your strengths (both as a business and as a content creator/manager).
As I wrote in this post on the Search Engine People blog, your content strategy should answer these questions:
- What are the objectives of your content marketing program?
- Who is your audience?
- What kind of topics will you cover?
- What forms of content will you use – text, video, pictures, podcasts?
- Where will you publish this content – on your website, your blog, on a popular industry blog, your social media pages, industry forums?
- How will you create this content?
Of course, you can’t answer any of these in isolation, and your answers to these will change as circumstances change (your industry matures, competition increases, you discover an as-yet untapped audience, or you just learn more and change your decisions based on what you’ve learned). And your answers to each of these questions will depend on the others.
Consider an online toy store for children. If you decide that the target audience of your blog is parents, you might decide that your content will largely consist of suggesting and reviewing fun activities for children, with some parenting tips thrown in. But if you think there are too many such blogs already out there, and you want to target grandparents who want to indulge their children, or aunts and uncles and kind neighbors who want to connect with the children in their lives, the focus of your content will be totally different.
Your audience, your products/services and your objectives are basically the deciding factors in answering all the other questions. The content topics you cover need to appeal to your audience and be related to your products; the forms of content depend on what your audience is mostly likely to absorb. Busy moms might listen to a podcast while they’re cooking dinner; a busy executive might read an ebook on her iPad as she takes the train to work.
In my opinion, the forms of content you create won’t have a lot of impact on the topics you want to cover. You can offer parenting tips, for example, as easily through tweets as through a video interview with a reputed child psychologist; the actual content of your posts might change, but the topics you cover don’t have to.
But who’s going to create all this content, you ask? My answer: you. You are the best person to do this. I’ll explain why in my next post.
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