A content strategy is vital to the success of your content marketing campaign. It helps you remain organized and provides your content with direction; This allows you to stay on-brand and relevant with your intended audience. Before you develop your content strategy, however, you must understand your target audience; This is just as important as generating quality content. The more time you spend learning who your audience is, the better.
Set Content Strategy Goals
Your content strategy needs a purpose – a specific and measurable goal you can strive toward. Otherwise, why spend time developing a content strategy at all? By establishing a set of goals during the first stage of development, you can tailor-fit your strategy to the business’s mission and goals.
When establishing your marketing goals, adopt the SMART approach by ensuring each goal is specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time bound. Goals should be specific and detailed so they are easy to understand, and their progress should be easily measurable with key performance indicators (KPIs). They must also be attainable with your team and available resources. Finally, they must be relevant to the company’s goals and have a clear timeline. However, regardless of your reasons for needing to develop a content strategy, establishing and writing out clear, measurable and attainable goals gives you something definitive to work towards.
Create a Buyer Persona
Your target audience is the other half of any marketing relationship. If you want your content to resonate with them, you need to understand them. One of the ways you can do this is by creating a buyer persona. Buyer personas are a detailed description of your audience’s interests, hobbies, motivations, pain points and goals, written in their voice. A well-written and researched persona feels real.
As you put together a buyer persona, consider both personal and work-related questions. Think about your target audience’s age, the region in which they live, their hobbies, the media they consume, their preferred social media platforms, their pain points, their careers and any other question that may be relevant to your business and your goals. According to Single Grain, you can ask these questions through customer surveys, one-on-one interviews, analytics and by talking to employees.
Gather your research and use it to create one or more personas by uncovering patterns in your data. Write the buyer persona as if they were writing about themselves – don’t be afraid to include details! The more detailed and fleshed out your buyer persona is, the more useful the persona will be.
Assess the Current Situation
If you have already been producing content, consider performing a content audit. According to Coschedule, a content audit dissects a company’s content efforts and performance by analyzing all individual metrics, channels and content to determine what worked and what did not.