Any brand can increase brand awareness and sales by the odd post here and there but those who are really successful have a plan and make smart strategic decisions. Without a strategy, success or failure is just luck.
This guide will walk you through key steps to develop and execute your own content marketing plan to grow your business and generate leads.
1. Set your goals
The most important part of any strategy or campaign or venture. Set your goals. What are you trying to achieve from your content marketing plan?
Typical goals include
- Increased sales and getting more high-quality leads, which will help you meet your revenue goals.
- Increase traffic to your site, as the more traffic, there is, the greater the possibilities for meeting business goals, sales and brand awareness.
- Social media engagement, which can help with both traffic and authority.
- Build credibility in your brand, become a well-known name in your industry where people go for credible information.
2. Know your audience
Before you can create successful engaging content you have got to know your audience. You need to be clear about who your audience is and create the right type of content on the right channels to reach them.
Google Analytics, social media analytics, and email subscription lists will give you the data you need on your audience’s:
Use these tools to see what content your audience is already engaging with, which social platforms they are using. This valuable information will mean you can create content based on what your audience actually want to see rather than what you want to read.
3. Figure out the best content channels.
There are a few things that will determine which channels are the best to use for your content marketing.
As you work through understanding your audience you will get a sense of where your audience is spending their time.
Looking at which channels your audience is using will help you determine which channels to use for your content. For example, if you or your customers spend most of their time on LinkedIn, then it would be a waste of time using Snapchat.
Business goals will also help determine which channels are best to use for your content
- If you want to increase brand awareness, then consider using well-established platforms like Facebook rather than up-and-coming networks like TikTok.
- If you want to generate more leads, then consider using LinkedIn as it’s proven successful for B2B marketing.
- If you want to sell a product, then consider a visual channel like Instagram or Pinterest that both offer product tags and prices with links to your e-commerce store.
4. Decide on content types.
Next is to think about the type of content you are going to create. Most content marketing plans have a selection of core content types such as blog posts, sales posts, brand awareness posts and curated content which are used as a base.
Blog posts should be an essential part of your marketing as they deliver strong results, increase credibility and are great for SEO.
Other content types that could be included in your marketing plan are video or podcasts. These are a great way to create more personal connections with your audiences and build relationships.
5. Create a content calendar
This last step bridges the gap between strategy and creation. To make sure you stick to your strategy you will need to create a calendar for the first 2 or 3 months that matches and used all the information you have put together and learnt about your business and audience up to this point.
Your calendar should include the following:
- The piece of content
- Which goal it is working towards
- Channel to post on
- The post type
- Keywords to include
- Time to post
With these 6 steps complete and a calendar filled out you are ready to start creating content and working towards your business goals. Remember your audience and goals in everything you do and start to refine your calendar the more you learn and the more traction you start getting with your content.
If you need help with your content marketing plan please get in touch with us today.