Content is King…
Working in SEO for over 15 years, “Content is King” has consistently been the repeated mantra, with the accompanying phase changing over time from:
- Links are Queen
- Engagement is Queen
- Content Marketing is Queen
- Context is Queen
- Distribution is Queen
- Credibility is Queen
They’re all important.
They all affect your search engine rankings, and they are all essential for people to learn about your content and discover and value your business.
But not just any old content is king…
To succeed with content marketing, you need to start with high quality content, you need to have a good platform to communicate from, good technical SEO, understand the various distribution methods, and you need to understand how social media works.
Having a formal content marketing strategy is a necessary part of growing your business. A content marketing plan will provide a framework for the creation of content that will:
- drive targeted traffic to your site
- enhance your company reputation
- nourish the relationship with your readers
- encourage them along the journey to conversioon
- track the performance of your content
- provide a process for continued generation of content aligned with your business goals
Identifying your target audience, and defining personas that represent them, is important for each marketing method, whether it’s Facebook, Google, SEO or email marketing.
Given the additional effort required to write good quality content that contributes towards your website/business becoming an authority on your chosen subject, it’s even more important to consider your audience personas with content marketing.
Always plan, write, publish and share your content with your audience in mind. Write an article that solves a problem for the target persona.
One persona may be female, aged 28-35, having just left the workforce to raise a child, living in the suburbs close to the city.
Another persona may be a young, idealistic person aged 22-30, interested in alternative health, happy to discover products made natural ingredients.
Another may be an ageing person looking for supplements to improve their health.
Each time you write an article or blog post, it should be targeted towards one of your personas. Keep them in mind as you write.
Content Planning Spreadsheets
I’m a Google Sheets addict. I like having a Marketing Spreadsheet to organise my marketing components, including my Content Plan. I use different tabs for:
- Persona list and definitions
- Yearly event calendar
- Content idea brainstorming
- Content classification
- Content publishing schedule
Content Idea Brainstorming
This is a free-for-all, where you list as many content ideas as you can.
Don’t discount any ideas at this stage. You may come back to them later on with renewed relevance.
Each idea should be listed on a new row, with the date suggested, and the name of the person whose idea it was. More fields will be added and updated later.
Have a brainstorming session each month, or more frequently if you start running out of ideas.
This is the guts of content planning.
This is where you go through the content ideas from brainstorming, and:
- give each idea a rating from 1-10 on merit
- map the idea to relevant persona(s)
- flesh out the ideas, and convert them into potential article topics
- determine relevant keywords for each article
- decide who will write, review and signoff each article
- decide when and where you will publish and promote each article.
Content Publishing Schedule
Now that you have articles written, it’s time to plan your publishing schedule. In a new spreadsheet tab using a calendar layout, schedule the day when each article will be published on your web platform.
Associated with each article will be a promotional schedule, listing when you will promote the article on each social media platform.