I cannot tell you how often I hear from clients--from small start ups to the enterprise-level--that they are unhappy with the lack of return they are seeing on their content. They have a lot of theories about why nothing they do is converting, however, as soon as I ask them whether or not that have a written strategy for their approach to content they get quiet and admit that they do not. A content strategy is an essential, but often overlooked, aspect of a wider marketing strategy. It helps you to determine which audiences you will be talking to on which channels, and what you are going to say to them when you find them. And all of that is tied together with a neat little bow: larger brand goals that you want to achieve in order to grow your business. If you feel like you are on a hamster wheel when it comes to your approach to content, then it's time to put a strategy in place. Any good strategy will identify the following:
Goals. I encourage my clients to pick 3 that they want to focus on initially. They can be as theoretical as improving brand awareness or as tangible as increasing sales by 15%, and they can also be a combination of these two approaches to growth.
Target Audience. I cannot stress enough how important it is to keep your target audience top of mind when you are building out strategies. Even if a comprehensive audience overview exists in your branding document, it also needs to be present on a content strategy document.
Overall Content Pillars. Identify 5-7 pillars, or main themes, of content that you want to focus on for your business. These should all be in alignment with your brand messaging, especially your values and mission statement.
A Channel-Based Approach. For this last step, you have to identify which channels will pair with which audiences and pillars. For example, an email strategy will have different audience segments and pillars than a Linkedin strategy would. Tailoring each channel to a specific audience and line of messaging will ensure that more of your content feels personal to the consumer rather than having them gloss over it because it doesn't apply to them.
Of course, to me this all seems so much easier than it really is because this is what I do for a living! But that's what consultants are for; we're here to be exceptional at our jobs so you can be exceptional at yours.