I am frequently asked by those who are pursuing a content marketing strategy what they can do to make the process easier and provide higher quality information of value for their customers and prospects.
Following are seven steps to take to create better content:
- Be strategic and identify how your content marketing integrates with the rest of your marketing communications strategy:
- Who are your target personas -- who are you trying to reach?
- What are your goals -- awareness, traffic, leads, dialog, SEO?
- When do you want to reach your target in their journey -- top of the funnel (awareness, research), middle of the funnel (RFI, short list, competitive evaluation), bottom of the funnel (meeting with vendors, purchase decision)?
- Where do you want to reach your target -- where will they be most receptive to your message, where are they going to be looking for information of value?
- Why does what you are sharing matter -- is it really information of value or all you doing a brand dump, or selling?
- Create one big piece of content and then break it down into different content types that can be shared across many channels -- blog posts, white papers, videos, ebooks, infographics, testimonials, FAQs, case studies, webinars, newsletters.
- Tell a story that is different and unique to you and your business. What business problem have you solved with a creative solution?
- Be useful. Answer questions before people asked them based on the questions you've been asked many times before. The more time you save your customers and prospects, the more you make it sinple and easier for them, the more likely they will become long-term customers.
- Have a content generation mindset and inculcate that mindset into your employees. Content is everywhere. One of the best sources I heard lately are the emails members of the sales team are sending to clients or prospects. These emails are likely answering questions or objections.
- Do more. The more you do, the better you'll get and the more analytics you'll have to let you know what is, and is not, working. B2B companies that blog generate 67% more leads than companies that do not blog (Hubspot).
- Be a better writer. Tell better stories. The more you write, the more you share, the more you have a chance of stirking a chord with a prospect or a customer. Write emotionally compelling content to increase the likelihood that your content will be share with others.