As I discussed in my Last post How to Build a Content Marketing Machine Part I in order to succeed in Content Marketing you need to build an efficient Content Marketing Machine. The term “Content Marketing Machine” I’ve borrowed from Marketo who have published an eBook with the same title. If you haven’t read my earlier post then please read it before moving forward.
In the last post I’ve discussed 3 of the seven ideas discussed in this book. In this post we’ll discuss the next 4 ideas.
For your convenience I’ll once more list all the seven original ideas .
The seven elements of a successful content marketing machine are:
- Audience Development
- Measure and Optimize
I’ve explained in my last post how to make a plan, organize a team and how to get Ideas for your content marketing machine. In this post I’m going to start from the 4th point in the above list.
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Production: If you have followed all the earlier steps correctly then you are ready to move to the next step of producing content now. Producing content is the most crucial part in executing a content marketing strategy. And most of your success depends on this. Many times I’ve seen wonderful content ideas executed wrongly and this in turn will destroy most of your hard work. Before going into the production phase check that everything is in it’s place. A very important step which is mostly overlooked at this step is repurposing content. If you have a wonderful idea then you can present in various content formats such as blog posts, audio podcasts, video, presentations and webinar. Ideally there must be discussion among your team on all aspects of content production and the channels employed in promoting it to your target audience. With feedback from all stakeholders you can ensure that you have thought about each and every aspect of production. After writing drafts your managing editor can reach each and every draft and reject or improve as he feels suitable.
Its a well known fact that people are ready to consume content if its presented in a medium which they prefer. So by producing content in more than 1 format you can make sure that your content will reach your target audience and no one will be left behind.
Audience Development: Next step is audience development. I remember when I started this blog most of my audience was composed of Marketing Managers which came to our site from Linkedin. And with passing time many of these one time visitors subscribed to this website and are an active part of our reading community. There are endless methods of audience development. But the most popular ones are guest blogging, publishing your content on other sites, sharing your content on social media and paid traffic such as paid placements or PPC. Marketo has mentioned in their guide that they spend upwards of $300 K per month for paid media. Which is around $10 k every day. Certainly not all businesses can afford this kind of money but if you are serious then you need to think about spending at least a small amount of money for audience development. There is no free lunch in business.
Conversion: Now if you are lucky enough then you will find visitors have started subscribing to your website. But if you don’t make efforts then these conversions are not going of any help to you. Marketers need to understand that not every subscriber is going to buy your products/services at the first instance. Lead Nurturing is one of the most overlooked aspect of marketing campaign. Most of the businesses think that if consumers have come across their website or have subscribed to their website then it will automatically lead to a sale. This is not the case most of the times unless you are selling something which no one else is providing. Most of the times there are competitors who are as good if not better as you. So in order to convert these subscribers into loyal followers and paying customers you need a well planned Lead Nurturing campaign.
You also need to monitor the activities of subscribers and closely track what they are doing on your website after subscribing.
Measure & Optimize: The last step of a content marketing machine is measuring and optimizing your content marketing campaign. But before starting you must have a clear idea of what metrics you need to measure. Metrics are different for the stage of sales cycle. For example if a subscriber has first time came across your website then you can simply measure the number of pages they have visited but for long time subscribers you need to adopt different metrics such as how much they are sharing your content or how many ebooks, white papers they have downloaded. After measuring the relevant metrics you can optimize your campaign according to your needs.
So these were the basics of a content marketing machine. I’d love to hear what do you think. Please leave your comments and share this article using Twitter, Linkedin, Google+ and Facebook.
Image Credit: Marketo.com and Kapost.com