Establishing a content marketing strategy is absolutely essential. So many B2B businesses have started down the path of content creation, investing time and money in blogging, video, infographics, etc., only to question their efforts after they see few new leads. In order to successfully make content a part of your marketing activity, you do have to give some thought to aligning your content with your marketing objectives.
Sadly, this is the kind of direction that’s lacking for a lot of businesses. Developing a content marketing strategy is critical to making inbound marketing work. Not all content should be designed specifically to sell, but it should be designed with some kind of desired outcome so you can assess its success.
In order to align your content with your marketing objectives, here are some simple questions to review as you develop your content marketing strategy.
1. What is the primary objective for this piece of content? What is the outcome that you want to deliver? What would be considered successful delivery and consumption of the content? How should this piece of content move a prospect along in the buying cycle?
2. Who is the target audience for this piece of content? How does this piece of content help them solve a specific problem they’re experiencing?
3. Does the content allow the prospect to put themselves into the story? Can the prospect see how the content is relevant for them?
4. What’s the offer? An ebook or something to download? Is there a secondary offer? For someone further down the buying cycle, is there something there for them?
5. After the reader completes the call to action (downloads, subscribes, shares, submits an inquiry), what’s next? How do you plan to continue to nurture this prospect to get them to trust you further, to try your product or service, to buy, to refer?
Content marketing should be designed with some desired outcomes in mind. And those outcomes need to be tied to the company’s business objectives to allow you to track your results so you can truly understand the value of the work that you’re doing.