Content marketing: 8 tips to inform your strategy

Only 32% of marketers believe they are executing an effective content marketing strategy.

Content may be king but theres no denying its the strategy behind it which can make or break your content marketing campaign.

An article published earlier this year by Forbes revealed that although 82% of B2C marketers and 95% of B2B enterprise marketers use content marketing, only 32% of marketers believe they are executing an effective strategy.

With these statistics in mind, we've compiled 8 top tips to help hone your content marketing strategy and ensure your campaign has the greatest chance of maximising its potential.

1. Plan

Whether it is increasing brand awareness in key markets or driving readers to a lead-generation page online, clearly defining your content marketing goals and aligning them to your business objectives will guide the sort of content you produce and help keep you focused. Build a content schedule to share with your team, considering factors such as the sort of content you will produce; when it will be published; and how it will be promoted. 

2. Quality over quantity

Although you certainly want to ensure you are updating content regularly, this shouldnt mean your quality should suffer. Smaller volumes of valuable, targeted and well-written content should always take precedence over an assembly line of content people might not be as interested in reading.

3. Know your audience

In order to target your content effectively, you need to understand who it is you are writing for. Research your key customers, your most engaged readers and site visitors, and explore their interests, common characteristics, preferred content types and social platforms.

4. Curate content

Although original content is an integral part of a successful content marketing campaign, curating information from other useful sources is also an effective strategy. Sharing thoughtfully chosen content with your readers will help position you as a thought leader, engage readers in discussion and meet other influencers in your field.

5. Listen to your audience

Read and respond to those comments and tweets as well as joining in discussions on platforms such as LinkedIn to find out exactly what it is your audience might want from your content. Listen for any particular common issues or questions which you could address, providing the information to build trust, authority and ultimately, a relationship with potential customers. 

6. Be curious

Read as much as possible, participate or listen in on discussions, ask those all important questions to others in your field - ideas for content are all around if you keep your ears and eyes open. Living in ideas mode will help fill that content calendar should writers block strike. Keep a notebook with you to jot down ideas.

7. Reuse and repurpose

Utilise your most popular articles by adapting them into another format such as an infographic or video. Refreshing an old article with a new title, updated information and further promotion can help you reach a new audience, reinforce your message and gain added authority.

8. Consider SEO

SEO matters - search engines have the power to boost your contents visibility or to bury it deep in the Internet ether. Identifying key words with a site search report or free tool such as SEMrush; optimising images; including internal links; and optimising your title tags and descriptions are just some of the considerations of SEO best practice.