Content strategy and content writing are necessary but problematic for businesses
Lack of time, inspiration and a specific strategy are the biggest complaints I hear. I don’t know many businesses that actually have a written plan. Sometimes even having that can still not aid confidence. After all, [bctt tweet=”Isn’t it better to be flexible and agile these days rather than following a content strategy?” username=”@supposeiam”] Well, that depends.
Content writing strategy or no strategy at all?
You could wing it. Why not? But the problem with not having a strategy is that it’s often more time consuming. If you’ve done some planning you know what you are working towards. Some key goals will help you deliver meaningful content. What do I mean? Some useful business goals might be broad ones such as:
- Developing brand awareness
- Driving website traffic
- Generating Sales Leads
- Converting Leads
- Improving Retention and Upselling to Existing Customers
Just having these broad headlines starts you thinking about your customer journey. Also what existing or potential customers might like to read. It’s not a case of just producing fluffy content either. You need to think how you can educate and inform, persuade and excite visitors and casual passers-by.
- If you don’t have any goals how can you possibly know what to create?
- If you don’t keep records of topics how do you know what subjects you haven’t covered?
- Who has time to go through lists of blogs on a website to see what’s missing?
That doesn’t mean your content strategy is set in stone. Sometimes a news item falls right in your lap and you should respond immediately and put the strategy on hold. But at least if you have a team of content producers they can get on and work for you fairly independently. They will know what kind of research to do and what is coming up next. That way they are more likely to suggest exciting blogs etc. rather than being lead by the nose or writing in a panic. [bctt tweet=”Having a content strategy really does make a tangible difference to business performance. ” username=”@supposeiam”]
Let’s face it, the thing none of us has is time. So let’s motor through the kind of assets you need to create once you have a strategy.
Brand awareness development
You want to get noticed. You want a reputation for producing useful, reliable, exciting, attractive or informative assets that people like. So consider video and infographics, SlideShare and Data sheets that demonstrate you know your industry and are aware of trends etc. A great script writer can make a video an easy win.
Use surveys and measure web traffic to watch progress and see what type of content your audience appreciates or is looking for. Here, Google Analytics is your friend. Adwords Keyword Planner and Google Trends will also help. These are important for your content strategy too.
Social media is useful here and a social media manager can help drive traffic. Video can be seminal in getting traffic to a smart landing page. Blogs and articles should also have clear calls to action. You want to inspire people to take action not just create “stuff” for the fun of it.
Off-site articles and collaborations can be really useful. Finding people in your niche or who even provide a product or service similar to yours might be useful. If you are a tiler why not team up with a company that sells tiles or a grout manufacturer? It’s all about being creative.
Sales Lead Generation
One way is to get potential customers to complete a form to access content. However, it had better be pretty special to warrant an email address. Yet, white papers, e-books and case studies are all useful in generating leads. remember they need to be A1 quality. Solutions videos and demonstrations work. So do, checklists, courses and ‘how to’ info. [bctt tweet=”Having a content strategy will help you create the right kind of assets for your business. ” username=”@supposeiam”]
This can be far more tricky. Subtlety is key. Think of how many times you might have shared your email for a case study and then being bombarded with emails forever. This is not cool. Some research into the customers niche, maybe even a bespoke blog/video or something of value is better than a generic scramble for custom. All this needs to be planned and strategized. You see? You do need a content strategy.
We all know it’s easier and cheaper to sell to an existing customer. But what are you doing to make your customers feel, warm, fluffy and loved? Arte you offering them exclusive content? What about deals and offers? Are you individualizing your content? Probably not. Generic segmentation has had its day. Look at your customers. You can even track them on social media and see their interests and needs. Once you have this kind of information creating content is much easier.
What you do need is a relationship with a top quality writer as a starting point. These content writers normally have a stable of contacts they trust that can help you with design, videography, social media, strategy and more. Not only are they first class writers who can turn their hand to case studies, blogs, video scripts and more they should have a good understanding of KPIs, measuring retention and how copy tweaks can promote an increase in conversion.
Content writing and content production is not straight forward but you can outsource. If you have a good content writer you might even get them to create your content strategy – but do ask nicely.
To hire a highly experienced content writer begin here.
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