Content marketing leverages various resources to tackle business challenges and assist buyers in making purchasing decisions. Addressing their business challenges and needs, enables businesses to reach, engage, and convert customers. The ultimate aim of content marketing is to formulate a strategy that targets and converts the ideal customers.
Content Strategy: Definition
Content strategy is a web strategy based on content marketing that yields long-term results. It relies on building a strong relationship with a target audience by offering them relevant and high-quality content.
The principle is to create and share online materials (such as videos, blog articles, and social media posts) that do not explicitly promote a brand but aim to stimulate interest in its products or services.
Many people write, design, and create content. Content strategy involves someone stepping back and asking, “What should we create and why?”
At the heart of a content marketing strategy lies the “why, who, and how” of your content creation. This includes the purpose behind your content, who your target audience is, and how you plan to provide value to them in a unique way. The primary objectives of content marketing for organizations typically include building an audience and achieving profitable results such as higher lead quality, faster conversions, and increased revenue. With a well-planned approach, content marketing can be a powerful tool to capture your audience’s attention. To help develop your organization’s content marketing strategy or take it to the next level, we have identified 3 essential components for building a successful content strategy below.
How to build a successful content marketing strategy?
Successful content marketing strategies consist of a mix of three types of content creation:
1. Viral Content
2. Thought Leadership Content
3. Sales Content
Viral or top-of-the-funnel content focuses on awareness. These articles attract visitors to your site who are looking for topics that are no more than one degree removed from what you do as a business.
These topics won’t directly drive sales. However, these articles become valuable resources that other blogs link back to as resources for their readers. These backlinks return search authority to your article as well as every page that your article links to.
Topics are defined through keyword research based on data. These topics prioritize search engine optimization (SEO) to bring your target audience to your website when they search online to learn about their pain points. When well-written, these articles rank within the top 10 positions on Google for dozens of keywords that generate traffic to your site.
Great content services understand that they can hire talented writers, train them to become grade-A researchers and coach these writers to deliver an excellent version of these types of articles.
The purpose of these articles is to educate your readers, strengthen the authority of the site, and build brand awareness.
A highly qualified content marketing agency will recognize that it is best positioned to help your team write this type of content.
Thought Leadership Content
Creating thought leadership content can establish your authority as an industry expert. This content provides a unique perspective based on your years of experience in your profession.
Thought leadership content could take the form of:
- A step-by-step process
- A prediction about the direction of your industry
- An in-depth analysis of an advanced concept in your industry, etc.
This content positions you and your company as leaders in what you do.
When written effectively, your competitors will share these publications on social media and bookmark them for future reference, which will help you strengthen your credibility as an influencer.
Several of these subjects may not have any search traffic associated with them. They fall into the category of “unknown unknowns” – topics that people don’t know they don’t know.
As a result, you’ll need to be creative in finding ways to get this content in front of your readers.
Some tactics we’ve found effective for increasing the visibility of this content include:
- Invest in Facebook ads and other forms of paid promotion to increase visibility
- Link to these articles in the viral content articles that you write
- Respond to relevant questions on Quora and incorporate a hyperlink to your article in your response
- Share it on your social networks
Thought leadership content increases the trust that others have in you as an expert and the perceived value of every piece of content on your site.
Thought leadership content demonstrates your expertise, whereas viral content primarily boosts your visibility.
Thought leadership content, therefore, increases the likelihood that other people will pay for your products/services.
Sales content converts prospects into customers. These content elements answer the questions raised during sales discussions with prospects by:
- Providing well-constructed resources that enable your sales team to more effectively answer difficult questions.
- Being optimized for SEO and placed throughout your blog to increase accessibility for prospects when they search for your company.
- These can also serve as customer service-focused articles that help current customers overcome common issues (and increase the likelihood that they will continue to work with you over time).
Some companies share sales content in the form of gated content on their website. To access gated content, prospects are required to provide their name and email address.
It’s improbable that sales content will draw in new visitors to your website, as the search volumes for these types of topics are usually low. However, sales content plays a crucial role in converting those who are interested in your services, helping them determine if you’re the right fit for their requirements.
Successful sales content is about both converting and filtering prospects.
Comparison content is one of our preferred types of sales content.
This content includes a clear positioning of what your team does best and who should work with you. This content also identifies other potential solutions and which prospects might benefit from those solutions.
These can be as simple as including customer reviews on your website to prove the quality of your products/services. Success stories can also take the form of a complete case study identifying the problems a client faced and exactly what your team did to solve that problem.
Who should be responsible for each type of content?
We break it down into three ownership groups:
This should be written by content marketing specialists who specialize in writing effective content.
Thought Leadership Content
Your internal team should write this content, especially those who work with the products/services you sell to customers.
Your sales team, customer service team, or marketing team can write this content. However, if you entrust your marketing team with the responsibility for this content, make sure they work closely with your sales and customer service teams to understand which topics to focus on first and how to position the responses to these topics.
Content marketing is a vital tool for businesses to reach, engage, and convert customers by addressing their challenges and needs. Content strategy is the backbone of content marketing, and it involves creating and sharing online materials that offer relevant and high-quality content without explicitly promoting a brand. A successful content marketing strategy consists of a mix of viral content, thought leadership content, and sales content. Viral content focuses on awareness, while thought leadership content positions the business as an industry expert. Sales content, on the other hand, converts prospects into customers by providing resources that answer their questions. By implementing these content strategies, businesses can achieve profitable results such as increased revenue, higher lead quality, and faster conversions.