“Every minute you spend in planning saves 10 minutes in execution; this gives you a 1,000 percent Return on Energy!” – Brian Tracy
When it comes to content marketing, a strategic approach and thorough planning will save you much more than time. It can ensure you get the best possible return on investment within your marketing budget. Some of the content strategy services we offer cover the vital first steps that should be taken before you invest in content creation, or when you realise that your existing approach needs a review. We can assist you with strategy and planning whether you’re a content or marketing manager in a large firm, or an SME owner who wants to improve results.
Our content strategy and planning services include:
• Buyer persona development
• Content audit
• Content strategy documentation
• Content curation
• Editorial calendar preparation
Buyer persona development
Developing buyer personas is one of the most important exercises you can do. After analysing the range of people who enquire about a service or product, and their motivations and needs, it’s not uncommon for businesses to realise that they’ve been devoting marketing resources to the least profitable types. Or creating one-size-fits-all content that none of their audience segments find appealing.
That’s why we recommend developing buyer personas, and creating a content strategy before committing significant marketing budget to content creation.
For companies that have created a lot of content prior to formalising their content marketing strategies, a content audit is recommended. It’s a time-consuming process, but the cost of completing a content audit is often offset by identifying content that can be updated and repurposed, as well as identifying content that is outdated, or aimed at a segment of the market you no longer wish to service.
Documented content strategy
As with other aspects of business, a strategic approach yields the best results when it comes to content marketing. Identifying the audiences you most want to reach, the platforms and channels most suitable, and the type and format of content most likely to appeal, are crucial steps in the content strategy process. This helps to ensure that everything you do is aimed at your intended audience, and right on target. Defining and documenting your strategy and preparing a content plan can ensure your budget is well directed, giving you the best possible ROI.
Content curation (internal and external)
Regularly sharing valuable content is one of the best ways to build an appreciative audience on social channels. But it only works well if you’re able to consistently find and share content your audience appreciates! Identifying high value, relevant content from non-competing sites is a time-consuming exercise. It’s best done by an experienced content curator who:
• Knows where to look
• Takes a systematic approach to categorising the opportunities
• Can assist your social media efforts by re-sharing or re-promoting your best internal content assets periodically
Content curation activities can be particularly useful for consultants and service based businesses that have a limited budget for content creation, but need to be highly active on LinkedIn and/or Twitter. But it’s usually only businesses large enough to accommodate an entire content team that can afford to have a dedicated in-house content curator.
Our content curation services are available on a casual, hourly basis. Use them in combination with social media assistance, or as part of a tailored monthly service package that includes content planning, calendar development, content creation and curation time.
Once you’ve identified the particular content themes and formats that will appeal to your target audiences, the next step is for our content strategist to begin planning your content.
1. To ensure your content is discoverable by search, our strategist undertakes keyword research to identify common short search terms, long tail keywords, and question search terms. This data helps to ensure you’re producing the type of content people are searching for.
2. The next stage is to identify topics that have the potential to result in highly detailed and useful content for your audience. The type of topics that are most likely to result in audience engagement.
3. A calendar is then produced for your review. Your calendar will include proposed publishing dates, working article titles, relevant keywords, URLS suitable for internal links, and topic notes and resources to guide the writer on the article angles.
4. If we’re assisting you with social media promotion of your content, your calendar will also list the social channels and any promotion budget.
Once you’ve approved your calendar, we assign a suitable writer, and schedule the content creation.
What does a content strategist do?
The role of content marketing strategists varies from one position to another, but an experienced strategist will be adept at understanding brand positioning, defining audiences, identifying opportunities, developing long term content strategies, and creating detailed content plans. In some roles they’re also involved in creating content calendars. They tend to have a good grasp of best practices in SEO, content creation and social media strategy, as all of these things need to work together for a good outcome.
You’ll find content strategists working at content agencies that offer strategy services, at some digital marketing agencies and blog writing services, as well as for big brands that have a dedicated content marketing team.
If you want the best possible results, strategic content planning and consistent implementation are everything. Call today to arrange a free introductory discussion with our content strategist, or to discuss any of our content services.