Frederik Van Lierde

7-Step Guide to Building a Content Marketing Strategy

Ever feel like building a content marketing strategy is like trying to solve the world's toughest puzzle? We've got you! Dive into our 7-step guide to piece together a strategy that clicks with your audience and sets you apart. Let's make your content shine! 7-Step Guide to Building a Content Marketing Strategy
Building a solid content marketing strategy really is like solving a big puzzle, where every piece has to fit just right to see the whole picture.

Imagine you're sitting down, ready to sort through all these pieces - that's the start of crafting your plan. It's not something you do once and forget about.

It's more like a journey, where you're constantly tweaking and adjusting, learning from the pros who've already nailed it. This way, you're not just throwing stuff out there and hoping it sticks.

You're making thoughtful choices that align with what you're trying to achieve, really connecting with the people you're talking to, and making sure you stand out from the crowd. It's about building something that grows and evolves with you.

1. Define Your Goals

Before you start creating content, it's crucial to know what you're aiming for. Are you looking to increase brand awareness, generate leads, or drive sales?

Setting clear, measurable goals guides your strategy and helps you track progress. Start by listing your business objectives, then translate these into content goals.

For instance, if your aim is to boost sales, your content should educate potential customers on your products and show them why they're the best choice.

Airbnb's content marketing strategy focuses on storytelling to build a strong brand community. They share stories from hosts and travelers, highlighting unique homes and experiences.

Airbnb's content strategy not only showcases their offering but also builds a connection with their audience, driving engagement and conversions.

2. Understand Your Audience

Creating audience personas helps you understand your audience's needs, preferences, and pain points. This information allows you to tailor your content to speak directly to them, making it more engaging and effective.

Spotify excels in understanding its audience. Their personalized playlists and year-end Wrapped campaigns are perfect examples of how well they know their users. By using data to tailor content, Spotify keeps its users engaged and loyal.

3. Audit Your Content

Take stock of what you already have. A content audit involves reviewing all your existing content to see what's working and what's not.

This step helps you identify gaps in your content and opportunities for improvement. It's about understanding your current state to make informed decisions moving forward.

HubSpot is a master at auditing and optimizing their content. They regularly update older content to keep it relevant and valuable, driving more traffic to their site and improving SEO rankings.

4. Choose the Right Channels

Not all platforms are suitable for every business. Selecting the right channels for your content marketing strategy depends on where your audience spends their time and the nature of your content.

Analyze your audience's online behavior and preferences to decide whether to focus on blogs, social media, email marketing, or other platforms.

GoPro leverages user-generated content on social media to show off the capabilities of their cameras. By encouraging users to share their adventure videos, GoPro effectively reaches its target audience of outdoor and action sports enthusiasts.

5. Create a Content Calendar

Planning is key to consistency, which is vital for keeping your audience engaged and attracting new followers. A content calendar helps you organize when and where you'll publish your content.

It ensures a good mix of topics and formats and helps you align content with key dates or events relevant to your audience.

Buffer, a social media management tool, uses a detailed content calendar to maintain a consistent posting schedule. This strategy helps them stay on top of their content marketing game, providing valuable content to their audience regularly.

6. Produce and Distribute Your Content

Now it's time to create and share your content. Focus on quality and relevance. Your content should provide value, solve problems, or entertain your audience.

After creating content, promote it across your chosen channels. Use SEO best practices to improve visibility and consider paid promotion to reach a broader audience.

New York Times
The New York Times has expanded its content marketing strategy beyond traditional news articles. Their Cooking section and Crossword app provide valuable content that engages their audience in different ways, increasing subscriptions and user engagement.

7. Measure and Optimize

The only way to know if your content marketing strategy is working is to measure its performance. Use analytics tools to track engagement, conversions, and ROI.

This data will show you what's working and what needs tweaking. Continuous optimization is crucial for long-term success.

Netflix's content strategy isn't just about creating shows and movies; it's also about analyzing viewing data to understand what their audience loves. Netflix's content strategy enables them to create more of what works, optimizing their content offerings and keeping viewers hooked.