In the history of business and advertising, content marketing is still a relatively new form of marketing. People are constantly learning new ways to improve it and better utilize it to their company’s advantage.
It has become popular in recent years because the internet has made it extremely easy to share content, and it is very effective at engaging a target audience.
Contrary to typical advertisements that flash before a person’s eyes and then disappear, content marketing gets the customer involved in the process. It doesn’t just grab attention, it holds it, which is a powerful effect all businesses want.
Content marketing is easy in theory, but hard to execute. It all comes down to having a rock-solid plan of attack. Here is how to crush content marketing in 4 simple steps.
1. Know Your Target Audience Inside and Out
The first and most important step to content marketing is knowing your audience better than they know themselves.
If you understand their fears, desires, and struggles, then you are in the perfect position to provide solutions to their problems.
Take this Tim Sykes review for example. He knows that people in the personal finance realm are rightfully skeptical of a lot of so-called “experts”. He puts their fears to rest with that review.
Doing customer research is a fairly simple task (and actually quite fun), yet many people ignore this critical step and fail to see the results they want.
Submerse yourself in forums, blogs, and websites that your target audience would hang out in. Talk to as many people as you can to build a complete picture of your customer.
2. Draft an Editorial Calendar
Next step is to take your content marketing plan out of your head and put it onto paper.
An editorial calendar is the perfect way to brainstorm content and then schedule it. Once you have your calendar drafted, the only thing you have to do is follow it and start writing!
In putting your editorial calendar together, ask yourself these questions:
- What kind of content would your audience want?
- What sort of cornerstone pieces of content can you create?
- Is this something people can use and achieve the desired results?
Also, feel free to use related sites in your niche to find out what content works for them and how you could improve upon it for your own plan.
3. Create the Content
Thirdly, now it’s time to start writing (or making videos and podcasts). Make sure the content you create is geared toward your audience’s benefit, not your own.
While following your plan and creating content, include as many actionable snippets and practicable examples as possible. This is what will make your content stand out from the rest of the junk online.
4. Consistency and Feedback
The last step in content marketing is two-fold: 1. Stay consistent with your plan and 2. Ruthlessly acquire feedback.
Consistency is the key to any content marketing plan that works. If you’re doing that, then you have the opportunity to gain feedback and improve your strategy.
Are you getting the expected results? If so, great! Keep doing more of what works.
If not, talk to your audience. Try to get them in a 1-on-1 situation if you can to pick their brains. Find out why your content is struggling and what you could do to make it better.
Your New Game Plan
Use the steps you learned above to put together a strong content marketing plan and achieve the results you’ve always wanted. Above all, make sure you focus on adding as much value as possible to your customers.