Having recently attended The Content Marketing Institute Conference in Sydney I thought I’d share with you some of the highlights of the 3 day event where I got to meet the great Joe Pulizzi.
The internet has changed how consumers discover new products and services, and the way they evaluate and make purchase decisions.
Nowadays developing high-impact content that engages consumers is key to fueling website visits and increasing engagement. But achieving this on a daily basis is not easy; we constantly hear business owners say that writing and producing a steady flow of relevant content is one of their greatest challenges.
In this article we share some tips on building a content strategy, driving consumer engagement through day-today messaging and large-scale promotions, and delivering content at scale. You’ll learn how to apply these tactics to get maximum value from your content and build your social brand.
Content is the fuel of your internet marketing engine. Without compelling content that engages consumers on a consistent basis, your internet marketing won’t deliver results. But developing fresh, engaging relevant content, day after day is one of businesses greatest challenges. Brands that succeed at consistently delivering engaging content begin with a well-planned content strategy and apply best practices in content development.
Here are several guidelines to keep in mind as you plan your onsite content strategy.
Align your online content with your marketing objectives. Content should support your marketing objectives. For example, if your goal is to build brand awareness beyond your existing customers or clients, your content strategy needs to reflect it. You’ll want to create brand relevant content that has a high likelihood of being shared, such as an entertaining video. By contrast, if your objective is to generate immediate revenue from your existing social audience, your content strategy should focus on creating compelling offers that drive consumers to sales transactions.
The ability to create and publish content at scale requires advanced planning and coordination with your overall marketing p
lan. Use an editorial calendar that coordinates your content plan with your marketing campaigns, as well as relevant industry events and seasonal trends.
While a editorial content plan is essential for efficiently publishing content at scale, successful content strategies are also flexible enough to adapt to unanticipated events and opportunities. In general, the 80/20 rule will apply: 80% of your content will be planned, 20% developed in response to unplanned events.
Marketers typically build customer profiles of their target market describing in depth who those consumers are, what they do, their interests and desires. Online, interactions with a brand are often “public” in nature, so understanding how the social context influences behavior is an important aspect of the consumer “social persona.” For instance, content that activates consumers’ desire to display positive personal traits (e.g., intelligence, wit, compassion, etc.) can be very effective in driving engagement and sharing.
Users are more likely to share your content when doing so reflects their style, personality or aptitude or a relevant piece
of information that their friend or colleagues may find funny or interesting. Always consider how your site visitors will react to your content by putting yourself in their shoes.
Online content is an area where continuous experimentation and testing pays off. In social media, you can quickly test co
ntent elements to see what works best at driving engagement and action: headlines, messages, photos, offers, calls to action, and so on. You can test which day of the week and what time of day work best for posting content; you can also test by social channel, geography, language, and audience segment.
Experimentation should be a standard part of your approach to social, with systems in place to set up and track your tests.
So how do you go about developing compelling, engaging content? Based on our experience working with hundreds of brands, we’ve found that successful online marketing requires developing two types of content for your social properties: basic messaging (day to- day posts regarding brand news, time-sensitive offers and other content relevant at a particular moment in time) and larger-scale social promotions that build momentum and buzz around brand initiatives and special events. Brands that drive engagement most successfully have developed a steady rhythm around publishing both types of content.
It’s important to keep in mind, however, that there is no standard formula for successful content.
A well-rounded online marketing strategy includes a steady stream of varied content designed to influence a range of user interactions. Successful brands approach content creation from multiple angles—some might be aimed at achieving high participation rates and other at driving high sharing activity.
Successful content marketing involves creating and publishing relevant content at a pace and volume greater than most small businesses are used to.
Businesses that excel at content marketing tend to publish more content than average, with a variety of content to support different business objectives. And they use paid media to amplify their owned content further, reaching new consumers outside of their existing social audience.
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