Four Steps to Creating a Successful Content Strategy
Traditional media forces have become something of a pastime. More and more companies are using content strategies to improve their SEO and gain additional website traffic. The idea of free marketing is one that almost every business owner will take to. Creating content without a strategy is a big mistake – if you are lucky, you will end up with a couple of great articles, but they won’t necessarily propel your business to where it needs to be. Coming up with a strategy can be a daunting task when you aren’t sure where to start.Here are four easy steps to creating a strategy that you can build off of as you gain additional information on what your target market is responding to.
1. Create a content calendar. Commit to publishing at least one post a day. To make sure that you aren’t writing about the same thing each day, assign different topics or target markets to appeal to each day of the week. Your posts don’t need to be long (200-300 words is just fine for most). The best way to do this is to write your posts one week in advance. This way, you have time to read over and edit what will be published in the coming week.
2. Come up with your content. Writing your content can be the trickiest part. One thing to keep in mind is that you really don’t need to write about your products or services all the time (or even most of the time). A good rule of thumb is to keep posts about your own services down to 1 out of every 5 peices. Instead, write about anything and everything that your target market would be interested in. Watch for content that might be relevant by setting Google Alerts for your keywords, listening to Twitter and checking out Topsy.
3. Schedule your distribution. Tools like WordPress allow you to schedule blog posts to be published in the future. This essentially enables you to log into WordPress once a week to schedule all of your posts at one time. (You are running out of excuses as to why you can’t do this now, aren’t you?) Scheduling your posts is important, but what good is a blog post if nobody sees it? Make sure to distribute a link to your posts through your social media channels. Hootsuite has a great platform where you can schedule your content to go out through multiple channels including LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook.
4. Record and revise. Using tools such as Google Analytics is a great way to keep track of which posts are bringing traffic to your site and which posts are converting for you. The definition of a conversion changes from company to company. It may be just getting more traffic to your site, getting additional people to join your newsletter distribution list, or getting someone to purchase your product. Keeping track of which posts are doing best will help you to tweak your topics in the future.