Content Marketing Made Simple: A Step-By-Step Guide

Updated: Aug 20

Content marketing aims to promote a brand without explicitly advertising it. Basically, it aims to generate interest in a brand’s products or services through telling a story around them. As Neil Patel says, “content marketing has been around far longer than the Internet, because content marketing is all about storytelling, and humans have told stories for as long as they could speak”.📖📖


3D CONTENT MODEL

Todd Robinson, in a blog post for Medium, describes the 3D Content model, which breaks content marketing down into as few as three simple steps. Those 3 steps are as follows:

1) Map your content to the pain point, or the specific problem that you think your customers are facing.

2) Use the right type of content for that problem.

3) Map your content to the buying cycle of the people that have that problem – your audience.



CREATING A SUCCESSFUL CONTENT MARKETING STRATEGY

OptinMonster says that, unsurprisingly, brands who have a proper content marketing strategy are more likely to feel that their content marketing is successful. According to Seb Waligorski, Google and most other top marketers believe that content marketing is going to be the most important strategy to drive conversions in years to come. So, how do you create a successful strategy?🤷🏻‍♀️🤷🏻‍♀️


It’s as simple as following these steps:


SET YOUR GOALS AND OBJECTIVES

According to Business Krafts this should always be your first step, as it allows you to make your content marketing specific to your brand’s goal. This also helps you to define your target audience and to outline how your content is going to help them solve their problem.


ESTABLISH YOUR KPIs

Making your goals specific and measurable is key in delivering an effective content marketing strategy. Your key performance indicators (KPIs) will allow you to measure your success by letting you tick off milestones as you go along.



KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE

For your content marketing to be effective, you will need to know exactly who your audience is, and tailor all of your content to them and their needs. To really understand your audience, you should start by collecting demographic data for analysis. Next, try and collect as much feedback as possible from existing customers. Finally, create buyer personas which describe your ideal audience, allowing you to target your content better.


ASSESS YOUR CURRENT POSITION

Carry out an audit of your current content. Compare it to the content being produced by your competitors, and then see if the content you are outputting is helping your business to achieve its goals. Work out if there are any gaps in your content, and use those gaps to improve what you are producing.💻💻


FIGURE OUT THE BEST CONTENT CHANNELS

To begin with, it’s best to start with the channels where you already have a successful online presence, and expand from there, rather than starting from scratch on a bunch of new channels. Basically, stick to growing what you know first, before branching out.



DECIDE ON CONTENT TYPES

Successful content marketing relies on having a central core of content published on your home site, which can then be repurposed and shared on other sites. Blog posts are one of the best content types, particularly if they are actionable and shareable!


IDENTIFY AND ALLOCATE RESOURCES

Now there’s some things you need to work out. Who will be in charge of producing your content? What tools and resources will you need to be able to produce that content? What will your content scheduling look like?🤔🤔


CREATE A CONTENT CALENDAR

Lack of planning is a major content marketing mistake, so make sure you schedule when your content will be published. You could put due dates into Google Calendar, or use a task managing and productivity app such as Trello to plan your content schedule.



CREATE CONTENT

Make sure to research each piece of content extensively before creating it. When you’re done researching, consider how you will reflect your brand’s personality in the content you produce, and bear that in mind for every piece of content you create.


DISTRIBUTE AND MARKET

Start by setting your content schedule for sharing on social media. Once shared, distribute it via email to any subscribers you may have on your list. Finally, mention any influencers or brands you mention in your content, in the hope that they will spread the word!🌟🌟


MEASURE RESULTS

This is the last step in your content marketing strategy, and it is perhaps the most important. By measuring your results, you know if you are hitting your KPIs, and therefore you can work out whether the content you’re producing is having the desired effect or not.


About the author

Lola is a copywriter and journalist trainee who has written on topics ranging from travel to marketing. She recently graduated with a First Class Honours degree in Hispanic Studies, and is going on to study a Masters in International Journalism. Lola speaks 4 languages and has lived in 4 countries. Her personal travel and lifestyle blog has over 6,000 all-time views.


Find Lola on LinkedIn here.

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