Kirti Dewan of Dewk Consulting knows that a successful content marketing plan starts with strategy. I talked to Kirti about the ins and outs of content marketing, from planning and strategy to content creation and measurement. Here are Kirti’s take-aways for success:
- Understand your marketing goals and align your content marketing strategy to those goals
- Define the different phases in your buyer’s journey
- Outline which phases need the most attention
- Determine the content pieces for those phases. For instance, for your audience, a webinar may be better suited at the start of the journey as opposed towards the evaluation phase
- Don’t get carried away. Don’t make it complicated. Do what’s right for your business.
Read on for more details…
How do you develop a successful content marketing plan?
Content marketing has four key pillars: strategy, creation, distribution, and measurement. A successful content marketer understands her audience and creates different content plans based on how each audience engages with information. Content creation can include anything from bylined articles to case studies, blog posts to videos, podcasts, infographics, social media posts, and advertising on LinkedIn or Facebook. Each piece of content should contribute to brand awareness or lead generation.
What about content strategy?
When I look at content strategy I look at who the audience is, first and foremost. I research the content types that most resonate with them; do they like white papers; data sheets or will they listen to podcasts/or watch videos? I check with sales and speak with current customers to find out which pieces are most interesting. I also try to understand why certain pieces in the past performed well. Prospects want content that is educational, engaging, and relevant to their pain points.
What does the ideal content marketing plan look like?
The ideal plan isn’t about “having it all” right now or doing it all at once, but about taking steps to figure out “what is the right thing for us now?” The ideal plan figures out the form factors that each targeted audience prefers and then aims to meet the marketing goals by producing short form (e-mail), mid form (video), or long form (white paper) pieces to engage the audience. And make sure the content can be repurposed in multiple ways, such as turning a webinar or ebook into a series of blog posts or videos.
For example, If we have a budget for 6-8 pieces, I’ll create a list of 20 pieces and have the sales and marketing teams vote to distill it down. Then I dig deeper to make sure that content will be impactful and have high repurpose value. The biggest challenge is putting boundaries around content development when there are so many options: staying focused and not feeling that you are missing out are key.
What is the role of metrics in this process?
Metrics provide critical validation at each step in the content development process, showing how content performed in terms of how many dollars went into the piece and how many clicks it got, how many retweets, how many mentions, leads, etc. Metrics also help determine what we should do more of.
Remember Kirti’s advice – Don’t get carried away. Don’t make it complicated. Do what’s right for your business. Keep it simple.