What is content strategy?
A content strategy is a plan in which you use content (audio, visual, and/or written) to achieve your business goals. A successful content strategy will attract your target audience at every stage of the funnel and keep them engaged even after a purchase.
Say your business goals include increasing brand awareness. To achieve this, you might implement a content strategy that focuses on SEO to increase your website’s visibility on the search engine results pages (SERPs) and drive traffic to your products or services.
New business owners might assume a content strategy is a nice-to-have, but not necessary early on. However, producing high-quality content can be invaluable in building trust with new audiences and succeeding in the long haul.
In essence, a good content strategy is the foundation of your Attract and Delight stages in a buyer’s journey that follows the inbound marketing framework. Along with attracting prospects to your brand, you can leverage a content strategy for sales enablement and customer satisfaction.
Plus, with 70% of marketers actively investing in content marketing, it’s critical to develop a good content strategy to compete in your industry.
When you develop a content strategy, there are a few questions to answer. Let’s dive into those, now.
1. Who will be reading your content?
Who’s the target audience for your content? For how many audiences are you creating content?
Just as your business might have more than one type of customer, your content strategy can cater to more than one type of user.
Using a variety of content types and channels will help you deliver content that’s tailored to each persona.
2. What problem will you be solving for your audience(s)?
Ideally, your product or service solves a problem you know your audience has. By the same token, your content coaches and educates your audience through this problem as they begin to identify and address it.
A sound content strategy supports people on both sides of your product: those who are still figuring out what their main challenges are, and those who are already using your product to overcome these challenges.
Your content reinforces the solution(s) you’re offering and helps you build credibility with your target audience.
3. What makes you unique?
Your competitors likely have a similar product as yours, which means your potential customers need to know what makes yours better — or, at least, different.
Maybe your main asset is that your company has been established for many years. Or perhaps you have a unique brand voice that makes you stand out from your competitors.
To prove why you’re worth buying from, you need to prove why you’re worth listening to. Once you figure that out, permeate that message in your content.
4. What content formats will you focus on?
To figure out what formats to focus on, you need to meet your audience where they are.
While you may to tempted to launch a podcast since it’s grown so much in the last few years, or launch a YouTube channel, find out first where your audience lives.
Otherwise, you may waste time creating content that either won’t reach your audience or capture their attention.
Once you identify the best formats, start creating a budget to assess what resources you can allocate to execute this strategy.
5. What channels will you publish on?
Just as you can create content in different formats, you’ll also have various channels you can publish to, from your website to social media.
This, again, will reflect where your audience lives. If your audience prefers long-form video content, you may opt to publish your content on YouTube. If you have a younger audience that likes quick content, you may opt for TikTok and Instagram.
We’ll talk more about social media content strategy in the step-by-step guide later in this article.
6. How will you manage content creation and publication?
Figuring out how you’ll create and publish all your content can be a daunting task.
Before you execute, it’s important to establish:
Who’s creating what.
Where it’s being published.
When it’s going live.
In a small team, this may be easy enough as you may be the sole decision-maker. As your company grows, you may need to collaborate with several content teams to figure out an effective process.
Today’s content strategies prevent clutter by managing content from a topic standpoint. When planning a content editorial calendar around topics, you can easily visualize your company’s message and assert yourself as an authority in your market over time.