I see content marketing as a mixture of basic ingredients. The analogy is a bit simple, considering the research needed, but it works for me. By folding charisma into a planned publishing schedule your results can be akin the best homemade chocolate cake.
Every day more companies are turning to producing original content for their websites. Content Marketing Institute reported that in 2015 “70% of B2B marketers are creating more content than they did one year ago.” Through strategy and research, we can determine what interests your audience. Content subjects can vary from in-depth articles or fun listicles.
Without getting too inspirational, let’s talk about goals. They allow the business to mark wins and loses. Developing a goal for a business content takes time, focused clarity, and measurable data. You may have a multi-tiered complex goal or you could have a simplistic long-term general goal. What is important to remember is that this is for your business, not the dry cleaner down the road. Creating a goal statement is a great tactic to focus your strategy on a single direction.
Some Goal Statements can be:
“I want to drive more people to my website”
“I want more sales”
“I want to get more Facebook Followers”
“I want to beat my competitor”
While some of these goals are measurable, beating your competitor will take me a few more cups of coffee.
Finding Your Proof
Of course, once you have a goal you have to understand it from every angle. You’ll need to know everything that would go into making your goal a reality. Right now, your goal may feel like a far away moment, a dream, but goals are about the little steps we plan out.
Step 1: Stating your goal. Check. Complete.
Step 2: Setting your key performance indicators or KPIs.
KPIs are your proof. KPIs are the planned standard for measuring success. Before ever putting pen to paper (or finger to keyboard) you need to have clear indicators. There are different ways to measure success with content marketing.
Here are some of the KPIs that I use when working:
- Sites Visits
- New Subscribers
- New Social Followers
These examples are just the ones I use, so if they don’t work for you, that’s fine! Each company has its own personality online. Just remember that your benchmarks need to follow your goal.
Now with goals and benchmarks set up, you can put out a few posts. Putting out two posts a week for a month would allow you to gather sufficient data. After a month, the data accumulated can show the kinds of responses you’re generating with the posts. This response data can show key indicators of audience behavior. For example, finding correlations between the types of posts and engagement numbers. If you find, that your posts that include photos have better engagement numbers, adjust future posts to include more images. This kind of strategy refreshment should happen monthly. No content strategy is over solid, the way your audience reacts to your posts is unique.
Mix it Up
Great content marketers excel at creating content that their readers crave, but that knowledge comes from research and strategy. Being a content marketing expert means you work daily with new information and adjust your strategy to fit what the consumer is saying. The most important thing to remember is to be fluid with your strategy.