Whether or not you have your content marketing strategy in place for 2016, it’s always good to re-evaluate and update your plan for the future. There are some key questions you should ask yourself prior to getting started:
- Who is your audience
- What kind of information are they seeking
- What type of content do they engage with
- How can you best convey your message to your audience
- What are your internal capabilities to produce content
Once you have answered all of those questions, you should have a clear understanding of what type of content is best for you audience. But, if not – here are some of our top recommendations for creating content for your inbound and content marketing strategy.
It may seem a little old-school since Infographics were all the rage the past few years. However, they still are a highly-relevant and a useful form of content that when created for the right purpose and with the right messaging, they can most definitely be a success. There are more options than just a static infographic you have options to make it interactive, make it a horizontal graphic, a small visual, and more.
The main idea behind an infographic is a visual representation of information, statistics and subtle brand messaging. There’s definitely no formula for creating a successful infographic, but there are some key points that you should keep in mind when incorporating an infographic into your content strategy.
First and foremost, do you have enough statistics or information to tell a story? An infographic should be able to tell a visual story without an abundance of text. When designing an infographic, you’ll want to use a variety of images, graphics, and charts to help prove your point. Here are some other great tips on how to craft up a successful infographic.
Case Studies & Success Stories
You may not necessarily consider a case study as part of your content strategy, but it’s a key element that should be incorporated into your overall marketing strategy. Think of it as the bottom of the funnel content, content that can help transform a lead/prospect into a customer. They can read first-hand accounts of the work that you have done and see how successful you have been with previous clients. There is no better selling point than seeing what your company is capable of doing than reading it or experiencing it from your other clients.
Writing an engaging white paper may be a bit more challenging than you would like, but by following a few simple rules – you can really create a piece of content that connects with your audience and helps them throughout their buyer’s journey. You’ll want to pinpoint a topic that is actually interesting for your audience, find something that is not only interesting but serves a purpose. Are you helping them solve a problem? Learn something new? Make it clear what you’re teaching them and keep it intriguing, they won’t want to stop reading it. Here are a few other steps to guide you through your white paper creation process:
- Do your research – make your content relatable and relevant to your audience by including timely facts and convincing statistics.
- Grab their attention – don’t make it boring! Use creative copy to engage with your audience.
- Add value – support your key points with stats and information that can be transformed into actionable items.
- Be clear – make sure you have a clear outline of your white paper and it flows consistently and cohesively.
A white paper is a great opportunity to take a stance on an issue or a topic and present your business’ position on that topic. You can show off your skills or your services in a subtle way that is informative and helpful to your target audience. You can use a white paper to grab your audience’s attention and bring them into your sales funnel.
Having a blog strategy is crucial to your content strategy for many reasons. To start, you can typically write blog posts more consistently than producing white papers and infographics. The process is faster, but the value that a blog post provides is just as great. It’s important to keep a blog schedule and produce quality content on a consistent basis. Here at CM, we typically blog twice a week and publish every Monday and Thursday – this way, our readers always know when to expect new tips and content from us.
When forming your blog strategy, you’ll want to have a clear message or point to your blog. Is it to provide value? Answer questions? Cover news topics? Or sell your product/services? Or is it a combination of all of those questions. Be sure to have a strategy behind the content that you are writing. Our strategy is to provide useful tips and steps to better our clients and potential customer’s digital marketing strategy, so we focus the majority of our topics around content marketing, PPC management, social media management, and design tips. All of our key service offerings in a nutshell.
It’s best to create a calendar that outlines the topics that you plan to write about and assign an owner to the content. Here’s a great blog calendar template that can help keep your blog strategy organized.
In 2015, video took up 57% of consumer internet traffic and is expected to rise to 69% in 2017. Videos are taking over as a key way to communicate with your customers. You can be creative with your videos and not make your product front and center, but more of a story that is related to your product. Or you can make your product the highlight of the video. It’s really up to you and your audience, what do you think they would prefer to watch?
Your content strategy should be comprised of the types of content that your audience resonates with. Do they prefer to read more educational content, long-form pieces of content chock full of information? Do they prefer to read quick stats and interact with visual representation? Or are they more likely to watch a video than read? Once you have determined what kind of content your audience wants to read – build out your strategy to include that type of content. And remember, you can always repurpose your existing content and transform it into a whole different piece. The opportunities to create content are essentially endless.