By Kristopher B. Jones, a serial entrepreneur and investor. Kris is the Founder of 2020 SEO Agency of the Year Finalist LSEO.com.
Content marketing is a small part of email marketing, one of the main ways many businesses grow today. After all, you cannot fully market to your customers if you do not have any content to send them. The content itself comes in many forms, including newsletters, blogs, videos, interviews and case studies.
Just like email marketing, you are going to need a solid plan for creating and sending content to your customers. You will also need to know your customers and what content relates best to them, which will affect how your content ranks on search engines and actually gets consumed.
Create a Content Plan
A content team needs to know a few things about their audience before writing anything:
- Who is this content meant for?
- What information might these people be looking for?
- What kind of content will convey that information best?
- What social media channels will this content go to?
Your answers to these questions have a significant impact on how well the content performs. For example, if your target audience mainly interacts with video channels like YouTube or TikTok and you put most of your content on a written blog, they are not likely to receive that information. If most of your audience gets their news through email newsletters and that is how you choose to share your content, you are off to a good start.
Several business goals have to do with numbers: sales, revenue, subscribers. Setting KPIs for these will show you how well you have achieved your monthly or yearly goals. For instance, if you are trying to meet a sales or revenue KPI, you can see how your content helped influence those things in a given period. You might also create KPIs for traffic, SEO, social media metrics and email marketing.
Know Your Audience
So then, how does one go about learning more about their audience? Using programs like Google Analytics and Twitter Analytics, you can get data on things like age, gender, income and even education. This information allows you to step into your audience's shoes and decide what content they will most likely consume.
Google Analytics can even give you a glimpse of your audience's interests. Just click on the "Audience" button on the menu, which will show a detailed list of what people in certain demographics usually search for online.
This information also allows you to create buyer personas, which are fleshed-out profiles of the ideal customer who would use your content. The more fleshed out the persona, the better you will be able to create content for their wants and needs.
Decide What You'll Post and When
Having a plan for what content to write is all well and good, but now you will need to make a plan for posting that content. Is there an event coming up that coincides with your content? If so, coordinate that content with the event. If you are planning a series of blog posts, post them in an order that makes sense for your readers.
Your buyer personas and your demographic information will also decide when you will post content. Certain groups of people check their email or read content at certain times of the day, so you will match your post schedule to that time.
Content should educate your customers, so decide how you will go about doing that. Remember, you will convey information best through the channels that your customers will most likely interact with.
The key to engaging your audience is regularly producing and posting content. That means sending emails that contain sales, newsletters, greeting cards or any content relevant to your customers on a timely basis. If you produce quality content, your audience will know when to expect it and engage with it. Plus, having a scheduled posting time will keep your content team on track to produce more consistent content.
Do a Content Audit
Every so often, it's a good idea to do a content audit. A content audit is pretty much a log of all your content, showing you how it performed. We are talking about social media shares, whether there are any inbound links on the posts, whether anyone shared the posts, etc. It shows you which content is most beneficial to your customers. It also gives you a chance to update your content. Rather than getting rid of content, you can add inbound links or more relevant information to help it perform better.
Put In the Effort to Produce Big Results
Sure, it takes effort to step up your content marketing game, but slow and steady is the play here. Stick with this, and it can produce some big-time results for you.