Not to get too personal but, how’s your content strategy working for you? Have you seen the type of results you crave? Or are you scratching your head wondering, “How is content marketing hailed King? I see zero return on my investment!”
Before you churn out another blog post, you need to know how to write a good blog.
This might come as a surprise, but the majority of content marketers today err on the side of more content and less marketing.
Many companies post without having a specific plan in place or idea in mind of strategy.
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The key to content marketing success is to blend strategy with engagement. To develop an effective content marketing plan, follow these steps before writing another word.
1. Get intimate with your target audience.
It’s the first step in running an inbound marketing campaign and a core component of any content marketing strategy – identifying your audience.
Without knowing whom you’re speaking to your message becomes diluted and confusing. Your reader won’t know if you’re talking to her or the person across the hall.
With a laser focus on the exact person you’re targeting with your content marketing, you can define the needs, wants, desires, fears, hidden agendas and more. By understanding what makes your audience tick, you can plan how you will deliver the type of content that drives sales.
2. Write your buyer’s story.
Now that you know your audience, hone in on your buyer’s story. The more specific you can get, the more powerful your words are.
If you’re not sure where to start, we’ve given you ten tips here.
These tips begin to shape the way you think about your buyer persona. Keeping things like where your buyer hangs out and what he or she posts about on social media enables you to define a clear idea of what your buyer wants and needs.
With this, you have the arsenal you need to create content that will get him or her to open his or her wallet to you.
3. Answer this: What makes you unique?
It’s not enough to know what makes your buyer unique. You must also determine what it is about your brand that’s so unique your buyer will choose you every time.
Claim your unique spot in the market with a USP (Unique Selling Proposition).
- What do you specialize in?
- What makes you different than any other Joe Schmo in the market?
Don’t worry about narrowing your USP too much. You can always add to it later. For now, you need to create a USP that defines your offering so clearly your buyer has to buy from you.
4. Write the words that your buyer wants to hear.
Your words matter.
As you develop your content, keep your buyer and USP in mind. Marry these two crucial pieces in your content to answer your buyer’s concerns, and desires in the content you create.
Consider the stages your buyer goes through to work with you.
- They must find you. Your buyer has to know that you exist. Attract her with your content, and give her a compelling reason to want to learn more about you.
- They have to want more. Make your buyer eager to hear more from you with a compelling message. Your buyer might not need to buy from you yet, but you want to stay on their radar so that they turn to you when they need what you offer.
- They have to say yes. When your buyer is ready to make a purchase, you want your company to be the first to come to mind. Your content can spark that positive nod and close the sale.
For your content marketing strategy to make you the kind of money you dream about, you need to write for each stage in the buying process.
The Content Marketing Institute put it well when they said:
Content marketing is a marketing technique of creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire, and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience – with the objective of driving profitable customer action.
After completing these four steps, you make that profitable action happen with content that gets results (instead of blasting out blog posts on a hope and a prayer).
Got a solid start? Here’s what to do next…
With these core elements in mind, how confident are you in your content marketing strategy? If you’re not feeling great, but know you want to get better, download our free report called How to Run an Inbound Marketing Campaign. In it, you’ll get a checklist of every element you need to turn your content into a money making machine.
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