It might seem like this whole content marketing and content strategy thing has blown up in recent years, but really it’s just a distillation of a lot of things you’ve been doing into one neat package. We recommend six essential stages to your content strategy:
Or look at it this way: before, during and after. Beginning, middle and end. Acts 1, 2 and 3. See: storytelling even inhabits your strategy.
Act 1: set-up your content strategy
This isn’t just about the beginnings of your journey; set-up and planning is an ongoing essential. Yes, you need to take a step back and ensure your goals, KPIs and plan is set before you even pick up a pen (or tap on a key) to start your first piece of content. But you also need to keep a calendar of content, planning on a daily, weekly and monthly basis. You need to keep one eye on the distant future to ensure you remain timely and relevant. And you need to plan how you’ll test and learn from the content you’re releasing.
Act 2: create your content and get it in front of people
Otherwise known as the bit everyone jumps straight to. Creating content is the fun bit, and the bit that a lot of us writers just want to get stuck into. But the other acts are what informs the creation. Imagine the writer’s block from not knowing what your story is – and we won’t even go near the idea of not measuring the success of the content to see if it’s what your audience wants and needs. Creating is just a small part of your content strategy.
Act 3: learn from its performance
There is a really strong and solid argument that says this is the most important part of your strategy. In Act 1, you will have set the goals and objectives for your content, so it’s important to make sure the content created in Act 2 is delivering what it needs to. We cannot stress this enough: measuring and analysing your content’s performance is what will feed the production circle. Test it, see what works, iterate, and start again. Only through measuring will you get the best from your content – and be able to prove that all-important ROI for the CMO.
Partner with us on your content strategy
Looking to take your content to the next level, or just don’t have a clue where to start? We’ve worked with some of the world’s biggest brands, advising, guiding and coaching in best practices for content strategy. We can talk SEO, social media and distribution as well as we can talk about the words and pictures used. We can help you map your content to your personas and your sales funnel. We can dig into performance analytics to make content judgements and advise on CTAs. In short, we can make you shine online.