How to create a winning content strategy

We Make Media highlights what to consider when creating a winning content strategy for your small business

What is Content Marketing?

Content marketing is any content that does not explicitly promote a brand, but is intended to stimulate interest in its products or services.

The underlying goal is to promote your business, but it is more subtle than simply pushing a sales message. Content marketing is an opportunity to share your knowledge, experience and expertise, to tell your story and to showcase your brand values and personality.

Your content will help you to differentiate yourself from your competitors, stand out in a crowded marketplace and communicate the value that you bring.  

Content marketing can include blog posts, infographics, magazine articles, eBooks, white papers, case studies, videos, newsletters, and social media.

It is a long-term approach, that will reap rewards for years to come when done correctly. However, to get a good return on investment when it comes to content marketing, planning is key. 

What is a Content Strategy?

A content strategy is a road map that tells you how your content will help to take your business from where it is now, to where you want to go. It is the plan you put in place before you create any content, and it helps you to work out how to use content strategically to meet your business goals. 

A plan will ensure that you aren’t going off course and creating content that will not help you to meet your business objectives and directs the content you’re creating to the needs of your audience. 

A strategy helps you repurpose content – using one piece of content in multiple formats – saving time and money. Extracts from a blog post can make excellent social media posts. A blog post can be read to camera and used as a youTube video.

Once you have your website content strategy laid out, it becomes easier to work out what you want to share and why, how to make it useful, meaningful, engaging and consistent, and how to measure its impact. 

Engage your audience

A good content strategy will keep your audience engaged at every stage of the buying journey and beyond.

Start by deciding what the goal of your content marketing activity is. Are you hoping to raise brand awareness? Increase brand loyalty? Increase engagement? Build authority? Improve customer service? Generate leads? All of these are valid goals, but don’t forget to make sure your goal is measurable.

Once you know what the objective is, set some Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) so that you can measure the impact of your website content and see what is most effective. If you’re trying to increase brand awareness, try measuring website page views, session duration, bounce rate, or newsletter subscriptions.

If your goal is lead generation, you can again measure the number of people willing to sign up to your newsletter or promotional offers, or fill in a form on your website.

If your goal is to build authority, you may be looking to measure how many other websites are linking to your content or how many times your content is being shared on social media.

Make sure you are clear on who your audience is, what their struggles are and how you can help them to overcome them.

Do some market research. What kind of website content are your competitors sharing? Are there any gaps that you could fill with your content? What is performing well and what is under performing?

Once you have decided on what kind of content you will create, prepare a schedule to stay consistent. This should allow for some flexibility to create spontaneous content based on relevant developments in your industry. 

Next you should gather data to measure the efficacy of your content marketing strategy. Are you achieving your desired goals according to your KPIs?

Bear in mind that you may need to adjust your website content strategy, depending on the performance of the content that you have published.  

Content marketing is a valuable business tool and can bring many benefits for your small business when done methodically. It is an ongoing process that requires careful planning, measurement and adjustments as you go. 

If you’re looking to embrace content marketing as part of your wider digital marketing strategy, perhaps we can help. We Make Media is a Devon-based company and we’ve been helping small businesses grow in the West Country since 2010. If you need a content strategy for your business, we would be happy to discuss what you’re looking for and how we can help. Book your free discovery call.

Jeff Cooper. 29 March 2023

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