Develop a Content Plan
So far, you’ve identified your target audience, what their needs are, what content they prefer and when, and what topics are interesting to them.
The next step is to pull all this amazing insight together and begin developing a content plan that’s realistic for you to achieve and is aligned with your goals.
Establishing a content marketing strategy is a bit like starting a weight loss program—you can plan all you want, but until you get your butt to the gym or start eating healthier food, you aren’t going to see results. So, let’s get planning!
1. Choose Your Tool
Creating an actionable plan that you use on a regular basis can be as simple as creating an calendar on a piece of paper, or much more in depth. What matters most is that you then take action.
2. Get Organized
Once you know how you’re going to keep track of your plan, make a list of all the pieces of content you want to create, based off your prioritized list of keywords and how your audience prefers to consume content.
This doesn’t need to be in order yet or have dates assigned to each piece but should include these seven elements:
1. type of content
2. topic it relates to
4. which audience persona it’s relevant to (if you have more than one)
5. where they are in the buying cycle
6. what action you want them to take (what’s the aim?)
If your business has been running for a while, chances are that you already have content you can use or repurpose. For example, this could be videos that could be written into blog posts. Think about every time you’ve communicated with your customers in the past and how that information and insight could be used in future content.
A content audit also helps you take stock of which content is working (and which isn’t), so you can create more of what works. You might notice patterns or trends that lead to opportunities. For example, you might notice you’ve answered many questions on one topic, which could then be turned into a more comprehensive guide.
So much prioritizing, right? That’s because it can be easy to feel overwhelmed by the sheer volume of what you think you should be creating. Remember to focus on what your audience wants, not what you want, and be realistic about what’s achievable. If you’ve got a team of people working on different content pieces, you’ll be able to schedule in more than if it’s just you. Consider what could be a “quick win” versus what’s going to take a great deal of time and money to get finished.
Remember, your audience decides what type of content you produce. You may have a preference for one type of content over another, but you are not your target audience. Allow them to decide what form that content comes in.
Now add a deadline to both a draft and a publish date, and sort it into a calendar that’s going to keep you on schedule.
Revisit Lesson 3, where you defined what success looks like and how you’re going to measure it. Make sure you’ve got everything set up to measure the results.
I’m hoping now that you’ve got a plan in place, you’re pretty excited about executing it! Get ready for tomorrow, where we’re going to talk about exactly how to do that and some nifty tips and tricks to make it easier.
See you then,
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