We’ve all heard the classic tale about chess players – the best players think at least three moves ahead. This doesn’t mean that they’re psychic. It just means that they know how the move they make now will affect the moves that are made later. It’s a concept that’s applicable to many areas in life. And believe it or not, one of those areas is content marketing.
Taking a chess-like approach to content marketing – and virtually everything else you do – is one of the most practical marketing tips for small businesses imaginable. That is to say, a blog (or an infographic, or a white paper) is more than what meets the eye. It’s a strategic move that sets the stage for everything else you’ll do from a content standpoint.
The idea of creating a legitimate strategy for your content marketing might sound a little intimidating at first. However, it’s actually the best thing you can do when you’re starting out. You might not know exactly where you’re going, but it’s best to try to go somewhere. The ideal place to start is establishing your organization as a credible source of industry information. For example, if you sell furniture, you can create content regarding the different choices you offer in materials and design. As a result, people who come across your content will take note of your expert status. And when they’re ready to make a purchase, they’ll seek you out.
Having a plan isn’t just a good idea because it makes you sound smart. It can also prevent you from making ill-advised mistakes. This is because creating content simply for the sake of creating content sometimes misses the mark. Look at Clorox, who tried to make a joke about new iOS emojis and ended up having to apologize for racially insensitive content. This content added absolutely nothing, yet severely damaged the company’s reputation. You definitely don’t want to be in this situation.
Instead, you want your content to always build to something else. Using the furniture example, you can get off to a great start by displaying your knowledge. Next, you can show how your different options can work in rooms with varying space options. You can also have a series of blogs that reflect how someone on a set decorating budget can incorporate your furniture. But you can’t do either of these things until you cement yourself as an expert and explain why you’ve made the design choices you’ve made.
The content you create is the foundation of your entire marketing strategy, and it’s important that you view your content in this way. By thinking three moves ahead, you’ll ensure that all of your content has a purpose. You’ll also bolster your organization’s standing as an industry thought leader, setting up your company for a very bright future.
Writer Bio: Bryan B is a freelance writer available for projects at WriterAccess.