7 Steps to Build Your Brand's Content Strategy
You’re smart. You know that branding is more than a pretty picture, some buzzwords, or some random articles about your expertise. In a world of media saturation you need to stand out and having an authentic brand message and content is key. Go you!
So how do you go about creating a content strategy for your brand? Glad you asked.
No matter how useful your brand is, people still have to find it. You’re on social media--that’s super. (Storia is a great place to build media-rich content to inform, educate, inspire, and motivate your market to buy.) But what if your brand is new, or you are trying to reach a new or expanded market?
Creating useful, interesting content (build around your brand messaging) can be a great way to build more demand for your product, service, book, etc. But your content plan needs to be good, scratch that, great.
“Content Marketing works if it is useful, inspirational, motivational,” says Jay Baer, President of Convince and Convert.
I've based this post on Jay Baer’s 7-step model for creating a content strategy for your brand, with a few additions and tweaks. Here's Jay's outline for our 7 Steps:
Let's start at the beginning, shall we?
First, you need to identify why you are going to use content marketing.
A few possibilities might be:
> Increase Awareness?
> Increase Sales?
> Increase Loyalty?
It is best to pick to just a few primary goals and stick with them. Once you know what your goals are, it is important to document them. Write a statement like this, filling in the blanks:
#2 What's Your ONE Thing?
What is your ONE thing your brand does best, first, etc.? In other words, what makes your content and brand significant/special?
Deciphering what sets your brand apart is crucial to a successful branding and marketing strategy. If you’re out there saying the same thing as your competition it will be hard for customers to see why they should choose you over them. Make it easy for your customers!
Measure your results according to your goals. You can track your results according to these four content marketing metrics:
Also, remember if you want to track behavior (i.e. link clicks), you have to make sure that it is trackable and then offer that option to click.
Don’t track everything. Track the few things that actually matter. (Trust me, tracking everything can be overwhelming and a waste of time)
This is where you need to step into your audience’s shoes and really consider the following:
> What do they need to know from you?
> How often will they likely want to hear it?
You can glean this information by searching online, asking existing customers/clients, social media, among other places.
You’ll then want to sort the information according to maybe 1-2 types of people (i.e. customers, potential customers) and what stage they are in the buying cycle, and what questions they may have at that stage.
How much content do you need?
So let’s say you have 2 types (or personas, as Jay calls them), and each of those has 3 stages of buying (we’ll say browsing, comparing, purchase) and these folks usually have 3 questions at each stage. So let’s multiply those factors to discover how many pieces of content we need:
2 personas x 6 (3 ea) buying stages x 3 questions per stage = 54 pieces of content
#6 Content Executions
Do your own research on your specific market. You want to create content that is not only useful to the consumer, but in the form they are most likely going to want it. If you can it’s usually a good idea to produce the content in a way that can appear across several platforms, i.e. blog post, Instagram image and post, ad, download.
|| Discover the two types of content execution, bricks and feathers [link at the end of this article] ||
Create a content planning worksheet that includes:
> Persona(s) - who your readers are
> Audience Needs
> Buying Stage this content is geared to (i.e. browsing, comparing)
> Call-to-Action - what do you want them to do?
Be sure to then input your strategy on a detailed calendar by week, month, quarter, etc.
#7 Content Amplification
“The fact that you created some content does NOT mean anyone will see it (or care about it)." --Jay Baer
You must have a distribution plan for each piece of content.
Remember that it's your job to tell interesting and informative stories. So, how can you be of value to your audiences?
For Jay Baer’s full lesson, including slideshow, visit: http://www.convinceandconvert.com/content-marketing/how-to-create-a-content-marketing-strategy/