While content creation is essential for any business, knowing what content to create and why is paramount.
Defining a content strategy is a top factor that contributes to B2B marketers’ increased content marketing success.
Yet, only 37 percent of marketers work in organizations that have a documented content strategy.
If only businesses recognize the value of a defined content strategy then perhaps they’d achieve a higher level of overall content marketing success.
Rob Ousbey, VP of Operations at Distilled, recently discussed the significance of strategizing and creating content that’s customized for the target audience at PeepCon 3.0 in Manila, Philippines.
Here’s a recap of Ousbey’s presentation.
Why You Need a Content Strategy
Strategizing is an important part of content marketing.
The client’s goals and the marketer’s strategies and tactics need to be aligned.
The following elements should be determined:
- Objectives: What do we want to achieve?
- Strategy: How can we achieve it?
- Tactics: The things we’ll do to get there.
Keep in mind that strategizing should only take some time. It shouldn’t drag on for months or else you won’t get things done.
You just have to know the answers to four questions – who, when, what and where.
Who Are We Talking To?
Identify who exactly you’re making the content for.
You might already have buyer personas in place, however, they consist of factors that change often.
Don’t hesitate to ask your audience what they want or need.
Here are a few tips to know your audience:
- Export your followers’ bios from Followerwonk, extract common terms, and review what your followers have in common.
- Check your Google Analytics demographic data and then segment it. Identify what your top-revenue and highest-converting customers have in common.
- Use third-party data surveys (e.g.., Google Consumer Surveys) and ask your target audiences about brand awareness.
When in Their Journey Are We Doing It?
It’s also crucial to determine in which phase of the customer journey you would like to align your content with.
Not all of your audience takes the same Awareness -> Familiarity -> Consideration -> Purchase path. They might be moving from phase to phase as today’s customer journey is non-linear
Customer triggers also vary. They can be:
- Intrinsic (“I need a holiday!”)
- External (“My coffee machine is broken.”)
- Opportunistic (“I’d never have even thought about buying a drone camera before!”)
Identify buyer personas and when in their buyer’s journey do you want to target them.
After this, figure out the message you want to communicate to your customers.
What Do We Want Them to Take Away?
What is the purpose of your content? Does it aim to provide awareness, benefit, values, or purpose?
Don’t simply tell people your message, show it to them.
Also, you have to know what people actually care about and incorporate that into your message. Your target audience won’t care much about a quality product if what they want is affordability.
Where Do We Put This Content so People Will See It?
This question will be answered differently by marketers.
If you ask SEO experts, they’ll say “rank it” and if you ask social media experts, they’ll say “tweet it.”
For social media promotion, you should be able to determine which social platforms your target audiences use.
When looking for influencers, remember that they exist on every platform – even outside social media.
Pick the appropriate channels and ensure you’re investing in the right one.
Moving the Needle
Identifying and tracking key performance indicators and metrics should also be a part of the process.
Marketers need to determine what they’re measuring to consider that their efforts are indeed successful.
“Success metrics are like ‘we made a bunch of money!’ – but those numbers can take a while to come in,” according to Ousbey. “Look at leading indicators like ‘We got a lot of pages indexed!’ for early warning signals/indicators of success.”