02 May Do This to Succeed with Content Marketing
Content marketing is quickly becoming more than a buzzword – it’s an essential part of every company’s and salesperson’s toolbox. You can create and share amazing content, but unless it’s done with the right context as part of the right plan, it won’t be effective.. To better understand how to do content marketing right, I talked with the leading content marketer on the planet – fellow influencer Joe Pulizzi, who literally wrote the book on it. Joe is a fellow LinkedIn Influencer, the Founder of the Content Marketing Institute, and the author of the new bestseller Epic Content Marketing. Here’s what Joe told me are the six keys to content marketing done right:
1) Clearly Define the “First Why” Even though nine in 10 organizations do some form of content marketing, not even half of those have any kind of strategy behind it. No wonder we have so much bad content out there. The first step is clearly defining the organizational why – Why are you, the business, creating content in the first place? What is the goal? Any goal you pick should be able to line up with more revenue, fewer expenses or happier customers. If not, choose another goal. The best content marketing strategies are built on subscription goals (getting prospects to opt-in to your regular content).
2) Clearly Define the “Second Why”Why should your customer care? What’s in it for them? This is the outcome for the reader or person that engages in your content. For example, P&G’s HomeMadeSimple.com has a great why – “To help mothers be more efficient around the house so they can spend more time with their families.” You will never see a recipe that takes six hours on P&G’s site because it doesn’t relate to their content marketing mission statement.
3) Build Your Audience PersonaAn audience persona is a helpful tool to use as part of your content marketing plan. It’s the “who” you are talking to and with. When content is developed for your content marketing program, it is the persona that gives it context. At any one time, you may have employees, freelance writers, agencies, and even outside bloggers creating content for you. The persona keeps everyone on the same page with who is being talked to and why the communication matters for the business.
4) Define Your Content Niche Don’t try to be all things to all people with your content. Choose a content niche based on your audience outcome where you can position your brand as the “go-to” informational resource for that topic. To go big, you need to go small with your content niche.
5) Make 1 Person Accountable, and Define Everyone’s Role Let’s face it…if no one in the organization is accountable for content marketing, like anything, it may not get done. Once you have someone overseeing the content marketing strategy, it is that person’s responsibility to work the silos in the organization (pr, marketing, search, social, email, sales, etc.) All these groups are creating content, so it is helpful to assign content ambassadors in each of these silos to figure out where the stories are coming from and how they can be told effectively in each channel. Everyone should have a role – and everyone should know their role.
6) Choose 1 “Epic” Channel We can’t be great at every channel. Choose one channel that becomes your main distribution source (like the blog) and then adjust your content into other channels. For example, blog posts can become an eBook or a physical book, or even lead to a webinar series. For some, a podcast could be your epic channel of choice. Then you can leverage other social media channels to work off your main channel. But for every channel you use, be sure you clearly define why you are using each channel (“Why are we on Facebook?”). That simple strategy can save a lot of time and resources throughout the organization.
These are Joe’s keys to content marketing done right – and add to this my recent 7 simple rules for amazing content marketing, and you will be well on your way to success.
When in doubt, be useful to your customers and prospects, and you can’t go wrong.
Now it’s your turn. How long have you been doing content marketing of some form? How about your organization? What do you think the keys to content marketing done right are? Which of these six things resonate most with you?Please let me know in the Comments Section below.