You’ve probably heard that when done right, content marketing can help you bring more awareness to your brand and to achieve your business goals. In fact, almost 70% of businesses are investing in content marketing in 2020.
So, if you’re new to these and don’t know how to get started with your content marketing, you’ve come to the right place. In this article, we’re going to guide you through on creating a content marketing plan. But before you can get started on it, you’ll need to lay out a few things first.
What to do before you start on your content marketing strategy?
Like everything else in life, before you start on something, you have to first decide why you’re doing it.
In this case, the very first step is to figure out why you want to do content marketing.
Decide why you’re creating content
Based on your business or marketing goals, think about the purpose of embarking on content marketing. Figure out how it can help you achieve your goals.
Are you aiming to raise awareness of your brand with content marketing? Perhaps you’re doing it because you want to build a mailing list to bring in more potential customers.
Or maybe, you want to be seen as a trustworthy brand in your industry, so you hope that creating content can help you with that.
Figure out what makes you unique
The second step is to find out what makes you different from your competitors. Find out why your customers prefer to buy from you instead of them.
This can help you decide on the kind of content that can help you stand out from your competitors.
Identify your target audience
When thinking about who your target audience is, saying “everyone” is not an answer. Decide if you’re creating content for just one main audience, or for different groups of audience.
If your business has more than one type of customers, your content marketing should also cater to more than one type of target audience.
Once you have identified these 3 aspects, don’t jump straight into creating content just yet.
Start creating a game plan first — your content marketing strategy
While planning for it can take some time, it goes a long way in increasing the effectiveness of your marketing efforts.
For starters, it can help you narrow down on the kind of content marketing services that you want to use. This can help you decide if you want to engage a content marketing agency to do the work for you, or take it in-house.
Having a plan also ensures that you don’t waste your time and resources.
As the saying goes — “If you don’t plan, you plan to fail.”
But if you don’t have the time or bandwidth to get it in order, you can always engage a content marketing agency.
How to formulate a content marketing strategy — Tips from an agency
Every company will approach their strategy in a perspective that’s unique to them. While there’s no “one size fits all” template for content marketing, there are some traits that most of these strategies will have in common.
Without further ado, let’s dive into what you need to do to craft your content marketing plan.
|Steps to create your content marketing plan||Things to note|
|Document your plan||Things like a content calendar will help you to better manage your content creation and publishing|
|Conduct a persona research||Helps you to identify the kinds of content that you can create|
|Craft your brand’s voice||Guides the way you engage with your audience through your content|
|Decide on the content format||Videos are highly engaging, but expensive to produce|
|Decide on your distribution channels||Use social media if you’re targeting millennials|
1. Document your plan
While not necessarily a must, writing down your ideas and plans will benefit you and your team in the future. It gets everyone on the same page and you’ll be able to make connections more easily.
For instance, if your content marketing strategy involves creating and publishing blog articles, it helps a lot to do a content calendar.
The content calendar details when the blog articles will be done and published. It can help you manage content creation and the various resources needed.
2. Conduct persona research
Once you’ve identified your target audience, you’ll want to drill down on a persona (or more if you’re targeting more groups of audience), and try to know them as well as possible.
Identify their informational needs. Find out the kind of content that your target audience looks out for. This helps to narrow down the kinds of content that you should do to resonate with your audience.
Once that’s done, you can then create valuable content to cater to their needs and address any questions they may have.
3. Craft your brand’s voice
Your brand voice sets the foundation for your pillars of content. It shapes how you want your customers to see you, and how you want to engage with them.
Do you want to come across as approachable? Or playful? Your brand voice defines the kind of language that you use in the content you create for your audience.
It should also be used consistently across your communication channels, be it your website or Facebook page. Your audience might get confused if you use different tones in different platforms.
4. Decide on the content format
What’s the content format that can best reach out to your audience? Blog posts? Infographics? Videos?
For starters, blog posts are useful in educating your audience. If the goal of your content marketing plan is to assert your position as an authority in your industry, you can start looking into doing blog posts.
Infographics, on the other hand, help to convey complex information and data into a more visually appealing manner. It’s a great format to use if you have a lot of information, such as statistics, to tell your audience.
If you have the budget, you can consider creating videos too. They are highly engaging and can be easily shared across social media platforms like Facebook.
Although they require more time and budget, they can be really effective and may be worth your investment. In fact, as compared to other types of content, people are twice as likely to share video content with their friends.
Alternatively, you can look at the kinds of content that your competitors are doing to decide on what you want to create.
5. Decide on your distribution channels
The channels that you’re using to get your content out to your audience ultimately depends on the content format.
Content channels include your website and blog, and social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.
If you’re planning to increase your brand awareness, social media platforms can help widen your brand’s reach. They’re the ideal platforms to use if you want to reach out to millennials in Singapore. Among the different age groups in Singapore, millennials spend the most time on social media. Or if you’re targeting a younger crowd, you could try TikTok, the up and rising viral video-sharing app popular among the current Gen Z.
In future articles, we’ll go more in-depth into the various channels for content distribution, and what types of content do well on those channels.