Content marketing is essential for a robust digital strategy. It’s content that drives engagement, awareness, and conversion, after all. With 26% of users constantly online at all times, that content certainly can make an impact.
In our years of experience as a digital marketing agency, we’ve definitely learned a lot about what works, what doesn’t and everything in between.
From understanding what mediums and channels work best for a brand to honing on key audiences, we know how to use a comprehensive content marketing strategy to drive results.
Here are a few things we’ve learned that can help inform your own content development.
It’s important that when you’re developing content, the big picture doesn’t get lost. If driving engagement is the goal, the next step should be creating substantive content, not pages upon pages of content that have little-to-no relevance for the user.
That can be hard because how much content is enough, really?
That answer is entirely up to your brand and audience. Before diving into this endeavor, it’s important that content marketers and digital experts alike take the time to really understand their business and their unique selling proposition, and also their audience’s wants and needs. This will ensure the right content will be created and will have the desired impact.
Creating your content should be greatly aligned with the trends in your industry. As these trends are changing your audience’s needs and perhaps the technology in your industry, your content marketers should stay vigilant and have a complete understanding of the situation at any given moment. If you don’t take your industry trends under consideration, your content might even be completely outdated.
You also have to research and monitor what content your competitors are creating. Again, it is a matter of staying afloat in your industry and making sure that your content is relevant. Taking your competitors’ offer under consideration will ensure that you create content so good that it can convince your audience to consider you rather than your competitors.
Another thing you learn more as you develop content is the need to be truthful, honest and aligned with your company values.
You have to be authentic in the words you’re writing, the topics you’re covering and what your desired impact is.
Your audience is very smart — they know when what you’re saying is truthful or not. If they are even the slightest bit skeptical, they will likely jump ship and turn to another brand to do business with.
Make sure your goals are clear right from the start and make sure you’re not exaggerating or trying too hard with your content.
The decision between creating an educational video or a blog post can really make a huge difference depending on your audience. For example, younger audiences prefer watching videos more than older audiences and B2B audiences prefer to read educational blog posts more than retail consumers. You must certainly find out the most preferred content format for your industry and your audience and focus on producing content in this format.
You’ve written an excellent blog post about your destination’s top things to do but nobody visited your website, so nobody had the chance to read it. Or, you’ve prepared a highly educational B2B whitepaper that you posted it on Facebook and nobody downloaded it.
These incidents take place very often because content marketers often neglect to create a solid content distribution strategy.
A content marketer’s key job is to understand and identify the digital channels their audience are spending their time on and deploy their content distribution tactics in these channels.
Complementing the content distribution strategy with a paid advertising plan can greatly improve the odds of your content being discovered and put your content marketing efforts on steroids.
Another thing we’ve learned to pay attention to more completely when setting out on our content creation efforts is keeping SEO in mind right from the start.
According to 72% of marketers, creating relevant content is their number one SEO tactic.
It’s better to optimize as you go than optimize after the fact.
You don’t want to waste valuable time, and your content can’t afford to lose out on any time either. That’s why you need to do keyword research before you start and make sure all parties know where and how to utilize the information.
This is especially important when creating articles or blog posts that will live online, and when working on adding or updating landing pages.
What we mean by this is very simple — don’t overlook simple grammar and syntax in favor of extravagant content and concepts. It still matters whether or not you spell a word right. A typo really stands out on a website.
It also takes a hit to your credibility. If you can’t even spell certain words right and you misuse grammatical marks, it will be harder for your audience to see you as a credible source. That can do lasting damage to your reputation that takes even longer to repair than it did to build up in the first place.
We’ve touched on this briefly, but it really does deserve its own section. Before you can ever create successful content, you have to understand your audience completely.
This doesn’t just mean you have to understand who they are and what they do, where they live and their demographics. You have to understand what they want. You have to understand how they’re using your content and your website. You have to understand their intent, their wants, and their needs.
Once you do, you’ll be able to better understand what kinds of content you should create and how you should do it.
As a digital marketing agency with years of experience, we’ve learned a thing or two about content marketing that can help to take your next content strategy to the next level.
From developing strategies catered more towards your audience to adding extra steps in the form of SEO, it’s important that you give these tips a try if you haven’t already.
Next, learn more about digital strategy myths that are definitely false!