I believe that a content marketer’s job’s also about finding the right audience for the right content.
This means that a type of content won’t serve the entire general audience. This is where a content strategy begins to take form and the moment you realize you need to organize everything starting from the content creation and up to the delivery process.
Just think about this: let’s say that you write an article on your blog and you promote it on Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin. Post a visual, write a status and also put the link the de description. How many people will click on that link? How many people will open in a new tab your blog and start reading your content?
The problem with many content marketers is that they want to take the audience from a platform to another. And that’s maybe the biggest problem you could deal today. Because social media platforms don’t like this strategy.
That’s why your organic reach is dropped. That’s why your engagement is so low.
So what’s the solution? How to create a content marketing strategy?
Here’s my best answer: Diversify your content!
And when I mean by diversifying your content, I mean by creating not a large number of content but creating the kind of content people wants to read, listen and watch.
Here are the steps you could start doing right now:
1. Create a core home of your content
Diversifying your content doesn’t mean that you need to create hundreds of contents, on several topics in several formats for several platforms.
The first step when you want to diversify your content is to find out the core home of your content strategy. This means that you need to think about what’s your main channel of distribution for the type of content you choose to create.
If you need a content strategy example, I will show you how I manage to create mine and how I create and publish content.
For example, the core home of my content is my blog. I put my main energy in this blog, for researching the right topics, creating them, writing the articles and promoting this blog.
I also promote it through guest post articles which at the same time, help me promote myself as the content creator. Nevertheless, I always include the backlink to my blog on every platform and on every guest article I get to contribute.
Here are some of my latest contributions as a guest blogger and the associated examples:
And, every time I am invited to speak at a marketing conference, I accept the invitation and during my speech, I always present my personal website as well.
This is the core home of my content.
I invest all my energy here, and also here, I present all my examples and test all the content strategies I want to know or learn more about about.
However, this does not mean that you have to make your own website your core content home.
Maybe you want to create a Youtube channel. If this is the case, that chosen channel should be your core content home. Or, maybe you want to contribute on an Instagram profile or a podcast channel and choose them as your core content home.
If you do not already know what your core content home is, you will have to ask yourself the following questions and, of course, answer them the best you can:
What’s your main type of content you want to create? Is it Video? Is it Text? Photo based? Audio?
What do you want to achieve with your published content?
How much are you willing to invest (time/money) in your content creation and distribution?
Does it bother you if you build your brand on a rented land?
Where are your targeted readers? Should you create a Facebook content strategy as well? What about a Instagram content strategy? Are there any other channels you need to be in order to reach out?
Think about these questions.
2. Do the research and find the right topic
The right topic is the right story for the right audience. This means that you need to understand your audience.
This step is important even if you are just about to start to create and publish your first piece of content. I know that maybe you have to assume that X and Y is your audience. But having a mindset that allows you to understand your audience (or at least to try to understand the audience and learn as much as you can about it) is very helpful in this phase.
Think about this: if your audience is a B2B market and as of consequence, a B2B audience that use to spend more time on mobile during the weekends and like to listen to podcasts because they love to travel etc., is more different than the B2B market audience that spend their most entire time on a laptop while traveling a lot and in the weekend they are staying home with their family and entertaining while watching a Netflix show.
Keyword research is not about only finding some keywords that can have a high ranking factor for your website and trying to incorporate as many of them as you can in the articles published on your blog.
Using a certain keyword can save you time and energy. It may also help you create your content without having to guess what to write about:
Using keywords will save you time when you will try to find the right question you need to answer for your audience.
For example, you can use Ahrefs’ keyword explorer -> keyword ideas – questions, and answer all the questions your keyword is ranking for.
Using keyword research will save you energy finding the right topic or the right idea on how to approach your topic.
Let’s say that you want to write about “podcasts”.
Thus, when you will do your keyword research you will get results and keyword ideas such as: npr, podcast, iheartradio, joe rogan podcast, tunein, ucsd podcast, podcasts, stitcher, serial podcast, best podcasts and the list can keep going on and on.
These are some general keywords, but using tools like Ahrefs, MOZ or SEMRush you can do a little bit more. Also, trying all these tools may help you find the right tool for you.
At the same time, you can get an exact phrase match (I’m using Ahrefs tool as an example to showcase you how to do keyword research) like: podcast, joe rogan podcast, ucsd podcast and others. You can get other keywords that are ranking, search suggestions, newly discovered and questions.
Now think about how easy can it be if you will have all the terms, questions and ideas, all the keywords people are searching for on Google so that you will be able to base your content creation on them.
And, having a core keyword for your content can increase its chances to become an evergreen content which means that you won’t have to come up with new topics everyday and publish new content on a daily basis.
It’s like having a great article that gets to rank on the first results page on Google and all you have to do is to just optimize it from time to time.
And guess what, keyword research is not only for blogging and writing articles, it can be a great addition as well to your other content marketing channels. It may be useful for research on YouTube videos and lately even for podcasts (because Google will have a support for podcasts shows too).
3. Create the core content
When I say “the core content” I mean the first content from which you will begin to diversify other types of content.
For example, let’s say that you are just about to create your article about podcasting. You have already performed the initial keyword research, you have found the right topic, you know everything you think there is to know about how you will approach this idea and you have also found some great and interesting questions to answer.
You are ready to write the content.
However, before you are actually engaging in writing the content, make sure that you understand the user intention when they search for the specific keyword that you are going to use.
How can you understand their behavior?
Well, you can try to walk in their shoes.
This means that you have to take your chosen keyword, go to Google search and take a look at the results it triggers. What kinds of content do you find there? Is it educational content? Entertaining content? Informational content? News? Look at the first 5 results and compare the results. What do they have in common? What questions do they answer? What problem do they solve? How were they created?
After you analyze the results, there is yet another important question you should ask yourself: How can I make my content better than these top 5 results?
Find your answer, write the content, and publish it on your website/blog.
Optimize the visuals, made the content easy to read and understand, make it appealing and professional. After that, all you have to do is to promote it on different channels.
4. Think about V.A.T. (Visuals, Audio, Text)
The above three elements stand together at the core of an effective content marketing strategy. You can combine together blogging with video and podcasting and of course, create a social media content strategy as well, in order to promote your publishings.
Visuals and text come naturally together whether you publish on a blog, on a company website, on social media or another third party content delivery channel. Text and images are important even when you create banners for advertising.
Visuals transmit a direct message and can speak more than words almost always. They are also effective in breaking big chunks of text and add to the visual aspect of an article and to its readability.
Last but not least, visuals can add new information to the article, as charts, infographics, graphic representations and screenshots.
What about video and audio content? How can you include them in your content strategy for the web and how can you mix them with texts and visuals?
Well, you can start recording a podcast on the topics of your audience’s interest or start a video channel on YouTube or a similar platform. Audio and video are popular forms of content nowadays among young generations especially. Audio is great for mobile use as it allows users to consume content when they are otherwise engaged in other activities. Videos,on the other hand, especially when they answer questions, are easier to consume and understand than text and it takes less time to do it.
You can combine afterwards these types of content very easy by publishing your text transcription from the podcast and embed the video on your blog or website. Promote these channels on social media and include them into your extended marketing plan.
5. Create mini content from your core content
Once you have the core content on your core channel – let’s say for the sake of example that it is your blog – you can start the promotion strategy. However, the core content can also be used within this strategy and with great results.
How? Well, you can create mini content snippets from your main blog posts and use them as promotional materials and content marketing on social media and other content delivery networks and channels you are contributing on.
Let’s take a look at some examples from my own strategy, examples that fit well into this context.
The next step was to take short paragraphs from it, minified versions of the article, and promote it on Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter.
The idea is to make a summary of your article or to extract a paragraph or a couple of worthy to mention quotes and use them as standalone contents on other channels, according to the type of content users consume on that channel.
We’re almost finished with the topic and I am sure you still have a lot of questions about your future marketing strategy. It’s ok, questions are good and as long as you have them it means you are still interesting in achieving some great results. I have showed you some of my best moves but this does not mean that you should do the same.
And, if you don’t want to listen to me, you can listen to a guy who build an advertising agency, and who is about to build a media empire.
Also, he is maybe one of the most well known individuals in online marketing these days.
He created a slide where he presents his entire content strategy that helped him build his big company.