Content marketing is a powerful tool for content marketers who want to increase customer loyalty. In order to develop content marketing, content marketers need to understand their target audience and the types of content that will be most relevant for them. Once you have an understanding of your target audience and the type of content they are interested in, it's time to start building content!
In this article we'll walk through four steps necessary for successful content development: developing a plan, identifying opportunities, executing with strategy, and measuring results.
Four Steps to Develop Content Marketing for Business Strategy That Builds Customer Loyalty
Step One: Develop a plan.
Before content marketers can build any content, they need to have a strategy in place that will achieve their business goals for content marketing. Two of the biggest mistakes I see businesses make are creating content without understanding why or having no real goal behind it beyond "we want more customers". Businesses must first understand what content they are creating, who is it for, and why. Once that's clear, content marketers can create a content marketing plan with goals tied directly to the business strategy.
Content marketers should include key performance indicators (KPIs) within their content marketing plans so that the success or failure of specific content pieces will be tracked along with the overall effectiveness of content marketing efforts.
Step Two: Identify opportunities.
Once content marketers have a plan in place, they need to identify the content types that will help them achieve their goals for content marketing. There are two main types of content you should build - owned and earned media content. Owned content is created by your business for its audience and includes content such as blog posts, whitepapers, and eBooks. Earned content is created by your audience for their circle of influence - social media content that gets shared through Facebook, Twitter, or other platforms outside the business's control.
Both types of content should be identified in a content marketing opportunities document to ensure content marketers build enough content to achieve content marketing goals.
Step Three: Execute with strategy.
The next step is to execute a content development plan and build content! At this point, you know what types of content your target audience wants and needs so it's time to create that content for them. Content marketers need to have an editorial calendar in place before they start content creation so content is built according to the content marketing plan.
Step Four: Measure results.
The final step in content development is measuring content outcomes and refining your strategy based on what you learn from the process. This means looking back at each piece of content created, whether it was successful or not, and using that information to inform future content creation efforts.
The content marketing opportunities document should include the name of each piece of content, target audience, content type, and business goal for that content so you can create an accurate measurement plan when it's time to start measuring results.
Now that you have a better idea of how to develop content marketing for your business strategy, are there any content types you are missing? Do content marketers have a content development plan in place that includes KPIs for the success or failure of specific content pieces?