Five questions every content marketer needs to answer

31 March 2016

Content marketing is one of the most important aspects of your digital campaign. While SEO is absolutely necessary for your website’s longevity in the search landscape, it is content marketing that pushes you to the forefront of the market place, ignites your audiences interest in you, and allows your brand to display how creative you can be.

Without a strategy and an understanding of the process, content marketing efforts will fall flat and waste time and resources that could have been applied more effectively. So how do you know if you’re on the right track?

Start with these five questions:

  1. Why, why and why?
  2. This may at first glance look simplistic, but the fact is that getting sucked into creating content just for the sake of it is an ineffective strategy. When you are putting a content marketing strategy in place, the content team needs to understand the purpose of each piece of content and have KPIs and goals to work towards. These goals should inform all thinking and planning to ensure that content hits the mark. If you are able to effectively answer why you are creating this piece of content three times, then you are most likely onto a winning idea.

  3. How will you track the success of your content?
  4. Firstly, define what ‘success’ would mean to you in this context. Does it mean lots of social shares? Warm leads for your sales team to follow up on? Lowering your website’s bounce rate? Once you understand what success looks like, use Google Analytics and other metrics tools to track and measure how successful your content is for your purposes. Use the date that you gain from this in order to push your next piece of content to be even more successful.

  5. Where is your audience?
  6. Your outreach strategy should be focused on where your audience spends its time online. Don’t replicate the same old outreach strategy you use every time without analysing your audience and where these people are, otherwise you could find yourself targeting people in the wrong demographics, while missing prime opportunities to engage with your ideal customer.

  7. Who owns the strategy?
  8. Lots of people can be involved in creating, publishing and sharing content, which means it can take a long time to push ideas to fruition and change can be slow. Without a single person who is ultimately responsible for a content strategy and its implementation – an owner – the process can slow down to a complete halt. Work as a team, but have a named person who is in charge.

  9. How will you be working with other teams?
  10. Make sure you have a plan in place that allows you to collaborate with your social media teams, the people in charge of paid promotion (such as PPC advertising) and press relations teams who work to bring extra attention to your content and business. Sales and marketing teams should also be kept in the loop. With a firm plan on how the different teams will collaborate, the problem of the right hand not knowing what the left is doing can be avoided and the content strategy will run much more smoothly.

    If you are able to answer these questions clearly and effectively, and continue to refer to your KPI’s during the production process, and when the work goes live, you will certainly be able to create a successful piece of content that makes a strong ROI.