Sounds dull and tedious, doesn’t it? If you think so, you’re not alone. About three quarters of B2C businesses and half of all B2B businesses have no content planning strategy in place. But, I pity the fool who doesn’t make a plan before getting in too deep with content marketing. With the right tools and attitude, you can ensure that your content is high quality, entertaining and effective.
1. Assess all the variables.
Hannibal never puts his team out there before they’ve researched the target and figured out exactly how their talents can be used to accomplish their mission. And, you should never launch a content marketing plan without doing your research first and developing a step by step strategy. What are others in your industry doing? What are their average conversions? Who is your audience? Once you have answered those questions, take a look at your assets. Do you have all the talent you need in-house, or do you need internet marketing help?
2. Be flexible.
When Face runs into security forces who aren’t buying his cover story, he knows it’s time to adjust. Similarly, if a blog series or social media strategy isn’t bringing in traffic, or if you aren’t getting the sort of conversions you expected, be ready to tweak your plan until you find out what works. Like rescuing Peruvian orphans from evil international cartels, content marketing is as much art as it is science.
3. Know your branding.
There’s a reason that A-Team in-jokes and catchphrases still have cultural cache decades after the show ended. Colorful yet consistent characters won a place in audiences’ hearts and collective memories.
What makes your company different? What are your special strengths? Can they be distilled into a few key phrases? Remember this theme when you are putting together a content strategy in order to build brand recognition and affection.
4. Display some panache.
Sure, you could steal back the donations for the new hospital in a nondescript work truck. But, that doesn’t pull ratings like a multi-colored, tricked-out conversion van. When you set out blog topics, think of interesting ways to cover them, as well. There are one million blog posts about the importance of HVAC system maintenance. But, you can make yours the one that shows exactly what can happen when you trust your AC maintenance to an unlicensed fly-by-night group.
When you take time to figure out your objective, how to get there and how to make it explosively awesome, you can get the A+ content marketing results you want. Don’t you love it when a plan comes together?
Lara S is a marketing writer, pop culture fanatic and hot sauce enthusiast situated on Florida’s sunny gulf coast. Hire this writer for blog posts, e-books, white papers and more.