Content remains the undisputed king of the internet. If you want your website, business, etc. to be successful online, it is essential to provide a steady stream of quality content. But writing content for the sake of writing content isn’t an effective means of creating a successful content marketing campaign. In fact, it’s a waste of time, energy, effort, and money. These tips will help you create more effective content marketing campaigns that get results in search engine ranking and in sales, which is ultimately what it all boils down to.
Create a Goal for Your Content Marketing Campaign
In order to measure the success of your content marketing campaign, you need to have a stated goal for the campaign. The most effective goals follow the SMART philosophy. That is to say that they are the following.
SMART goals for a content marketing campaign may look something like this.
“My goal for this content marketing campaign is to achieve first page ranking for keywords XYZ within six months.”
“My goal is to improve web page traffic by 20 percent within six months of implementation.”
“My goal is to improve web-based sales by 5 percent per month over the next 12 months for a total increase of 60 percent within a year.”
These goals are specific. You can measure your progress from one month to the next. While some may be more aggressive than others, they are all achievable (provided you choose the keywords wisely based on your competition), they are relevant to your business, and they each have a specified time or deadline.
Always Begin a Content Marketing Campaign with a Defined Strategy in Place
Now that you have a goal in place, it’s time to determine the actions you will take to achieve those goals. This is where things get tricky for many business owners. You’re good at what you do. You probably didn’t start out that way. It took years of learning, training, and experiencing to get you there. The same holds true with crafting an effective content marketing strategy. It will take time to understand all the nuances and moving parts that must work together to craft a successful content marketing strategy.
At PBJ, we can help you with all aspects of a successful content marketing campaign. This includes the crafting of a content marketing strategy designed to help you achieve your goals, content development and writing, content promotion, and more.
The best strategies for content marketing look at multiple issues specific to your industry, the way you operate your business, your target audience, and the market where your business is located. It may involve a combination of local optimization strategies as well as brand building, product promotion, and more. We’ll work with you to craft an effective content marketing strategy designed to help you accomplish your current goals and leave you well-positioned for future growth.
Deliver Quality Content at Every Stage of Your Campaign
Quality is often subjective when it comes to online content. When it comes to things like ranking well in search engines and getting social shares, the quality needs to be impeccable. That means the content needs to deliver on the promise of the headline above all else.
Think about it.
How many times have you clicked a headline for a news article or even an advertisement based on the headline that grabbed your attention only to discover the content did not match the headline at all?
Disappointing, wasn’t it?
You do not want your audience to feel disappointed when reading your content. So, the first rule of creating quality content is that you absolutely must deliver what the headline promises.
The second rule of delivering quality content is to stop seeking perfection over readability. Your audience will forgive you a few grammatical errors, dangling participles, etc. in favor of content that is readable, informative, and entertaining.
The third rule of writing quality content for your content marketing efforts is to create content that is educational, informative, or entertaining. In a perfect world, your content will be all three. However, if it isn’t any one of the three, people will feel robbed of the time it took them to read the content.
It doesn’t matter if you’re crafting a Twitter post in 280 characters or less or if you’re writing a much longer piece, you need to honor the time it takes your readers to read the content by delivering quality information with every piece you publish.
Test Results to See Which Content Delivers the Best Results (Emulate that Content)
As you create more content for your content marketing campaign, you will be able to see which content is gaining the most results toward your goal. That is the content you want to emulate. Look at the following information about the content and try to capitalize on these qualities in future content you create for your content marketing campaign.
- Length of the content.
- Locations where the content is published.
- Keywords (don’t forget to consider latent keywords as well) used in the content.
- Type of information contained within the content (was it a light and entertaining piece or a deeply informative piece).
These things work together to help you determine the most effective types of content for your goals. Always test. Even when creating new content to make sure you’re still on the right content development track.
Promote Your Content
Promoting content is something many businesses are reluctant to do. However, you have many mediums available to you to get the word out about website updates, press releases, white papers, new blog posts, local media coverage, and stories that others have published about your business, products, employees, services, etc. No story that presents your business in a favorable light is a bad idea to promote.
Fortunately, social media makes it easier than ever to promote your content. You can create a simple post for the following social media platforms to get surprising results, mentions, and shares for your content. However, it isn’t all about social media, there are other ways to promote your content as well, including the following.
- Blog Posts
- Paid advertisements
- Guest posts
- Online forums and communities
You can even interact with influences in your industry in hopes they will share your information to their audiences. Some will request fees for doing this while others will share quality content organically if they feel it will appeal to their audiences. The key is to present your content to as many people as possible and promote it widely to maximize its reach.
Deliver Just the Right Amount of Content
Aaron Agius of Forbes writes that while it is sometimes a good idea to not give all your golden nuggets of information away for free, hiding it behind a paywall or making your audience jump through hoops to read it defeats the purposes of your content marketing strategy. You want to give your audience enough of a taste that they will certainly want to come back for more. Right?
So, avoid the temptation to provide too little information in your content marketing. The desire for information is why people read your content in the first place. It all goes back to disappointment. You never want your readers to feel disappointed in the content you deliver. Provide quality, informative content to your audience with no strings attached and you will enjoy far better results than if you attempt to coerce your audience into giving something in return for the content you provide.
Repurpose Your Content to Get More Bang for Your Buck
Content is not a one-and-done effort. You can reuse your content in many ways. The more life you give each piece of content you create, the greater value the time, energy, and money invested in creating the content proves to be. What this means is that you can use notes from a podcast as a blog post. You can also place snippets or excerpts from a podcast on YouTube, Instagram, and even as part of your blog post. You can use the transcript of a podcast episode as a blog post or even as a teaser snippet to use on social media. The possibilities are endless.
Additionally, you can use curated content to create “best of” types of blog posts, podcasts, videos, social media conversations, etc. The idea is to never allow your content to accomplish only one goal. Re-use, repurpose, and re-distribute your content in a variety of forms in order to get much more out of your efforts.
Stay on Target When Creating Content for Your Content Marketing Campaigns
Don’t lose sight of your goals along the way. It’s easy to forget your original goal when creating content. Your creative juices may be pulling you in a different direction. Save that energy for a future campaign with different goals. Stick to your original goal when in the midst of a content marketing campaign. Otherwise, you could go off track and not accomplish your original goal at all.
That doesn’t mean you can’t revisit your strategy if you feel at some point in the process that your strategy isn’t helping you accomplish your goals. But you need to make sure you give your content marketing strategy the opportunity to succeed before you abandon it in search of the next shiny new thing that comes along.
PBJ understands the many challenges of creating a winning content marketing campaign. We can help you create, strategize, and implement your content marketing strategy today. Contact us now to learn more.