Rich & compelling content is what drives online business more and more each day so having a dedicated content budget is pretty common. As business owners we need to ask ourselves, is the development cost or time worth the outcome? Many business owners know that they should be blogging to promote their business with fresh content, but often are doing so without clearly defined goals in mind.
Have a Clear Objective in Mind When Starting Out
With any great content marketing campaign there are defined goals, a roll call of project assets needed, and all potential roadblocks are mapped out prior to the campaign execution. Know what it will take and plan it out in advance with clear timelines defined for execution.
You can’t define clear goals unless you know who you are trying to reach with your message. Ensure that the message matches the audience by utilizing buyer personas. Having a process to uncover this by connecting with your sales or management teams can be hugely valuable in refining your campaign goals.
Having a discussion amongst the customer-facing front lines of the company can turn up valuable insights that should not be overlooked. Integrate yourself into all facets of the company and truly adopt the Smarketing approach.
If you don’t have these things in mind going in, then your content strategy will not deliver the desired outcome. Goals drive your outcome, you cannot solve a problem you have not fully defined.
Does the Content Solve a Problem, Inspire, or Answer a Question?
The content you are delivering should be helpful and solve problems that potential customers are facing within your industry. Work on ways to determine whether the content is helpful from an external facing audience that doesn’t know a lot about your industry. Ask friends, family, and co-workers to contribute feedback as the compelling nature of the content is reliant on the external audience’s engagement and not your own opinion.
If the content does not accelerate the education and the discussion around the topic, then it’s time to question why it exists. Attract, engage, and educate your audience in a way that makes sense to them and the way they are looking for.
Take a serious look at your industry and determine the mediums that your target audience is using to digest content. Video, image, audio, and a myriad of cocktails can all be delivered through your blog to entice the right audience and enrich the experience.
Be helpful, transparent, and inspiring. Choose the medium of content that accelerates engagement based on the audience you need to reach. You don’t need to reinvent the wheel, simply integrate this into your current blogging agenda. You need to be cognizant of enriching the experience for your target audience.
Are you Enriching the Experience?
Take the extra time and resources to develop enhancements to your written content that are valuable in catching the attention of your readers. Custom graphics and images, infographics, videos, slideshows, or PDFs can all be powerful ways to enrich the experience for the reader.
Invite contributions such as comments, social shares, or ways of participating. It can be as easy as asking someone else to contribute their own related experience. Find common ground that your readers can relate to and then establish a means to have them participate.
Sometimes the approach needed can be different based on the industry. You may need to lean more heavily towards Pinterest marketing in the case of image rich content, or Youtube when you have more video content to promote. Be sure to achieve total accessibility across all devices by having a responsive website to all sizes and types of device.
Determine where and how your target audiences digests their information, whether it be news, video, image, or blogs. When all else fails consider having a lean approach to playing a small role in each to see which provides most leverage based on your research. Don’t expect to achieve results without feedback and testing. Above all, you must ensure your content always has a purpose.
Does the Content Have a Purpose?
The message you are delivering needs an avenue of available progression in the process of lead development. Don’t leave the reader hanging without additional information, or offers to entice them to learn more. Conversion rate optimization is a subtle art, but necessary to drive engagement and natural progression. Create a way for them to connect with you at every stage of the process with newsletter subscriptions or free offers such as e-books & consultations. Don’t let your customers get sucked up into a hole, never to return again!
Promote additional content that you have made in the past to support your topic. It’s helpful to have multiple associated topics covered ‘in-house’ within your blog to keep the visitors on your website. Promoting external sources is great to develop credibility, but this also comes at the cost of directing the reader away from your website.
Have external links open in a separate tab by including the “_blank” HTML tag on the cited link to keep a tab of your website open when redirecting to external sources.
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Start By Being Your Own Brand Advocate
Whether you are developing content for a blog or for other means to promote your business, it’s important to keep the audience in mind. Having a clear direction of who you are speaking to, and what you are saying is what is critical to your content marketing success. The attention to detail, and bar you set for the final quality standards of your content will determine the final output. Growth hacking your content output by developing a strong and focused purpose for your content is what drives traffic, leads and sales!
So what strategies are you implementing to ensure your content budget doesn’t go to waste? Let’s hear about your content promotion strategies!