All you need for a successful content strategy
The core ‘ingredients’ of a robust content framework are:
- goal setting
- precise segmented audiences
- understanding user behavior, touchpoints, and flow
- purchaser Segmentation
- funnel layers
- specific content material types to suit all of that!
Are you still asking yourselves whether you need a framework plan?
Of course, you do!
But it’s not enough just putting content ideas on a calendar.
Your primary need for an immediate Content Strategy Plan is summarized below:
Most companies that start creating content do it internally.
They try it out and give the whole digital content thing the old college try.
While that’s more than most can produce from scratch or in the early stages of content creation, they are still starting to generate content about their passion – a clear step in the right direction.
But in general, the content that most people create includes the “basics” and will do nothing for lead generation.
What was Good content once is not good enough anymore.
Think that millions of posts are published every day.
Not when the owners of the top SERP positions have thousands of more links than you do:
Do you think you’ll get inbound marketing links from thousands of domains to outrank them?
- Not unless your content is 10x better than theirs.
The top organic SERP position holders (1-5) capture 90% (or more) of the attention. So if your goal is to land on page one of the SERPs, that’s still not “good enough.”
Moreover, most content usually does not have a clear focus.
What’s the goal of the content? What’s your plan? Do you have a timeline?
What purpose does each content part serve within the larger goal of increasing revenue and business objectives?
How are the content parts connected and serve to trigger audiences’ actions?
The content strategy framework is essential to prepare you for these inevitable occasions.
You need to:
Set goals, subgoals,etc.
Content marketing is a diverse scene.
Depending on your business objectives, content can serve various purposes, from brand awareness to closing the deal and every step in between.
Everyone wants their content to drive sales, but that’s not an actionable goal.
So how do you achieve that goal?
It would help if you had a sub-goal and sub-sub-goals and so on.
It would be best if you had goals for your goals.
Instead of thinking of your content as a matter of generating traffic or sales, think of your goals. What are your expectations? and work towards them in terms of inputs and outputs.
Start by listing specific outputs or end goals for your content.
Particular, actionable things like:
- Increase blog traffic by 15%
- Increase social shares to 20/month
- Decrease bounce rate by 5% in the next month
- Increase conversions from blog posts to lead magnets by 3%
These are actionable, specific results that you can build a content framework around.
If your current list of goals consists of:
- Increase sales
- Get more traffic
- Post more
Scratch that and start listing actionable items that are realistically achievable in a specific time frame.
The key to a content marketing framework is to put everything into a real-time frame.
If your main objective is to increase traffic, that’s pretty easy in the grand scheme of things: post more great content on different platforms, and you’ll probably get a bit more traffic. That’s the digital content strategy of most content creators.
But if you want to grow by 15% in the next month, you need specific goals to go along with it.
So your goal is: Increase blog traffic by 15% in the next month.
Input 1: Create X more blog posts on high traffic topics.
Output 1: Generate 5% more traffic.
Input 2: Boost social sharing strategy with low-cost social ads (10/day ad spend)
Result: increased blog traffic by 20 % in 30 days
So how do you explore what inputs are needed to achieve the outputs you want? By examining your current visitor numbers.
Investigate your current monthly traffic in Google Analytics:
Classify your report by organic visits and set the date comparison range as you wish.
Is your goal to increase this by 20%? That means you need 600 more sessions next month, for a total of 3k visits.
Once you know that, take a look at what content is bringing in the most traffic.
This insight will give you a better approach to what a single content post could do for your traffic in a month.
Do you only need 600 more visitors? Based on the example above, you probably only need three more fantastic blog posts, as each one generates over 200 per month.
Now you know your needed input for this month (three notable blog posts) and your expected output (600+ visits).
If you go back to your framework and do it all over again for each goal, you will have everything listed.
It’s that obvious.
What is more, content without the right audience is just hidden content.
You need to know your audience!
You have probably heard this tired marketing/sales phrase hundreds of times from someone who calls themselves a content strategist. Buyer personas, behavioral funnel, etc.
When it comes to content, the reader is an essential factor in any content marketing plan.
But it goes far beyond knowing the demographics of your customers.
It’s a no-brainer.
If you want to scale your growth, you need to target your content marketing efforts to a specific audience.
If you get lost in “24-45 years old” and “likes to go cycling on Sundays,” you’ll get set back.
It’s great to have this insight, but that has nothing to do with your content list.
Demographics are great for sales. But it’s a waste of time to build every post around them.
Instead, it would be best to create content that your target audience will want to spend their time reading.
Some critical questions to ask yourself when developing a content audience are:
- Are you targeting beginners in your field, or are they experts looking for insanely actionable, high-level content and information?
- Is the content you already create or want to create related to what you sell?
- Does talking about topic X get users interested in your offering?
After you have listed your boring demographics and personas, you can get down to the nitty-gritty:
The content viewers.
Focus on crucial audience factors, such as experience level, relationship with the company’s products, common pain points (which vary significantly by experience level), and more.
First, review your existing content and analytics.
It’s tempting to jump from “my audience just wants information about technical SEO” to writing dozens of posts on the topic and calling this a content plan.
But you do not know what your audience wants. Not until you have talked to them and asked them directly.
And in most cases, they do not want to tell you or take the time to do so.
An easy way to find out what resonates is to do a content audit of your current content.
Use analytics to see which pages are producing more and better traffic based on your KPIs:
For example, take a close look at dwell time metrics like bounce rate and time spent on-page.
If people are spending an average of nearly 10 minutes reading your post, that’s a sign that your content is engaging with your audience.
This is just the beginning; It is essential to know what your loyal readers like the most. What Returning customers like the most? Not only the window shoppers who try your tactics.
Use the “New vs. Returning” report under “Audience” in Google Analytics. Sort your secondary dimension on “Page” to see which pages your returning visitors are browsing:
Now analyze the same dwell time metrics, such as:
- Bounce rate
- Session duration
This analysis should provide insight into which specific posts and topics your regular readers are enjoying.
If you have an on-site search engine, which you should have, you can use Google’s on-site search keyword report:
This finding is a goldmine of terms that your readers are actively searching for.
Do you not have content for some of the search queries shown yet? You have just discovered gold in the form of easy-to-write topics that your audience is drooling over.
Use on-site search topics to develop your content plan and even understand the level of expertise your audience is looking for.
Then Develop User Flows and touchpoints to build your framework.
A content audit is an essential step in developing an excellent content framework.
Beyond that, you need to start developing a concrete plan. Fill it with unique content.
To make your framework work as intended, you need content that goes beyond daily SERP results or even “evergreen list articles.”
It may sound mythical, but this content exists on dozens of websites in the marketing space.
Try the below ‘ingredients’:
- Highly engaging content -> a success story that motivates readers.
- Shareable content-> clickbait potential while still delivering results.
- Linkbait content-> studies, insane growth = links, links, and more links.
- Unique content->that has not been done before, like your standard listicle.
So, what’s the piece of unique content for you? What shifts the status quo in your niche audience? A groundbreaking study, an unconventional way of delivering results, a David and Goliath story where you put your own business on the line.
Are you wondering where do you start? Where do you find ideas?
- Capitalize on the pain points of the funnel stage.
- Segment Content Topics for every Funnel Stage Pain-points
Depending on the funnel level of leads visiting your website, pain points can vary greatly.
To target prospects at every stage, you need unique social media content for each step.
Refer to the user flow that you investigated in Analytics.
Start with the first touchpoint that stands out to you:
- You need lower-level entry content to get people through the door. You can do this through social media content or organic traffic.
- Then, you need to layer with content that increases in level to bring your new readers up to pace and continually address pain points as they move through the buying cycle.
- Only then can you include sales-focused CTAs: when they are on the cusp of buying.
These steps will get them to engage with your work and ultimately initiate the onboarding process.
Now you can take a deep breath.
You have a unique content framework that:
- Outlines critical steps in the customer journey.
- Is tailored to your returning readers and to attract new readers
- Has goals, sub-goals, and precise inputs needed to achieve the results
- Uses keywords, topics, and existing content items to inform your next content breakthrough.
- Has a segmented content plan that eventually makes conversions.
Generating content without a framework plan is like flying without wings.
You are at the mercy of the current wherever it takes you, good or bad.
Developing a content strategy framework can feel dull and boring.
And that’s because it is.
Yet, it’s key to any successful content marketing is done today.
And in a few months, when your content has thousands of real people giving you real money, you’ll be grateful you put the work in it.