Must Have Content Marketing Survival Guide: Everything You Wish You Knew
The marketing world is certainly not what it used to be. Before the primary focus was on product placement and clever messaging. It was about getting the product in front of the consumer as many times as possible and often just hoping for the best.
Today, product messaging is not enough! You need to nurture prospects into leads through effective storytelling and then continue delivering value time and time again.
People love to buy, but they do not want to be sold to. Therefore, you need to stop selling.
So what do you do?
An effective content marketing strategy is the only way to survive in today’s competitive marketplace.
Content, regardless of how it is packaged, serves as the vessel that delivers your brand’s message or story to the consumer. Your content needs to show that you genuinely care so that an emotional connection is established. There must be relatability and an understanding of the consumers pain point.
When it all fits together perfectly the rewards are endless. It is through your content marketing efforts that you will earn trust, respect, and lifelong customers.
But getting started is not always easy. Setting up an effective content marketing plan takes time. It requires understanding the key variables that actually make a difference.
Here are the steps you need to take.
Define Your Goals Early
As you begin setting up your content marketing framework, decide what your goals are as soon as possible. Are you looking to build brand awareness, to establish yourself as an authority, build an email list, etc. While your overall plan should include many, if not all, of these factors they need to be separated into specific goals.
The goals you create will directly influence your activities. For example, if the goal is to increase subscribers then maybe you write an ebook and give it away via an optin form.
Goal setting defines your direction. It lets you see the endgame. Without it you won’t know what kind of content to deliver.
Develop the Right Strategy
A good content marketing strategy takes into consideration the most important elements, such as social sharing, viral content, understanding your target audience, etc.
If you take a look at any successful business online, you’ll probably notice that their content is wildly popular. It’s been shared thousands of times across social media sites, either because it was informative enough for readers to want to pass it on or engaging enough to strike up a hot debate.
Why is this content so successful? It’s all about strategy.
As soon as you have set clear objectives for your content marketing plan, it’s time to talk strategy. One of your major points should be focused on audience. Whether you’re writing content or managing content campaigns, the success of your business hinges on being able to cater to the right audience at the right time.
Next, consider how you can create content that keeps people coming back for more. Consistency plays a big role here. While a fresh approach is always appreciated, content actually becomes ineffective if it’s too sporadic, according to Jason Brewer. For example, if you’re creating content for a blog and decide to use a different tone for each post, readers might view the content as being too unpredictable and, as a result, less credible.
Finally, don’t forget about the search engines and the importance of SEO. Finding the right keywords is crucial. You want to focus on long tails so they rank faster. As well, diversify through using LSI – this way you will not get penalized for keyword stuffing. Make sure you pay extra attention to both your on page and off page SEO and focus only on high PR sites with authority for your back linking.
A good SEO strategy ensures that the content you produce gets gets indexed and ranked faster. But don’t forget to let your content flow naturally even if you have to reduce the number of keywords you use.
Use the Right Software
Using the right software can make all the difference in the world. It allows you to streamline, expedite, and simplify processes.
An application, such as Kudani, will allow you to do everything from inside the software. Kudani lets you research and curate content that is currently trending from authority sites with high PR and Alexa rating. You can customize images turning them into unique blog graphics, add videos, and instantly have links to sources. Moreover, you can get ideas for titles, follow an editorial calendar, find guest posting opportunities, create a contact database, and so much more.
One of the biggest benefits of using software like Kudani is being able to organize and access virtually everything related to your content in one place.
With Kudani you can search keywords to find exactly what is trending. Drill down to get your longs tails and use those to rank faster. Keep in mind that trending keywords are also the most shared.
Infographics are another great way to get lots of social shares. With Kudani you are able to quickly grab content and create infographics that go viral.
Review and Revise
Establishing a baseline, regularly reviewing your strategies and tactics, and pivoting and revising as needed should become the fundamentals of your business.
Winston Churchill once said, “To improve is to change; to be perfect is to change often”.
Take time to learn both quantitative and qualitative analysis and use that as part of your decision making process. For example, how many optin opportunities do you currently have on your blog? That’s your baseline. Now add 2,3, or even 4 more for a period of 30 or 60 days and track the numbers. Buffer recently did this exact experiment. They added 8 additional optin opportunities for a total of 9 resulting in 130% increase doubling their subscribers.
Content marketing is an important addition to your marketing mix. It allows you to engage with consumers in a whole new way. You can finally build real trusting relationships where your visitors are actually happy to hear from you and want to hear what you have to say. Ultimately, it is about more than just the bottom line – but that’s pretty nice too.
Lastly, don’t be afraid to try new things. I recently saw a movie with the line, “life begins on the edge of your fears”. What are your fears? What’s holding you back?