Many business professionals misunderstand content marketing strategies completely, resulting in little or no marketing success. Without developing a content marketing strategy you won’t engage and connect with your target audience as effectively, making difficult to reach your business goals. Your content is what will provide your readers with value. It’s your job to provide solutions and answers to them, through quality content.
A well implemented content marketing strategy will help you to achieve your personal and business goals just as effectively as any other digital marketing strategy while building brand awareness. But just what goals do you have in mind? The most common content marketing benefits include increasing your website’s organic traffic, attaining a loyal audience, boosting brand awareness, and ultimately persuading your readers towards utilizing your products or services.
Because content marketing has become so important, we have constructed The Advanced Guide To Content Marketing in 2020. Below you will learn how to stay on top of content marketing trends, improve your marketing strategy, and implement your own content marketing strategy from start to finish.
What Are Content Marketing Strategies?
The content marketing institute recently stated that as opposed to giving your audience a sales pitch, you provide them with quality content they find valuable and relevant. In turn, your content will do the marketing for you. Content marketing is just one form of marketing. In this marketing technique, you will be providing excellent and well-thought-out content for your audience in exchange for their business. This has everything to do with making sure your content marketing effort is built around improving user experience. Inbound marketing will always demand quality, making insightful, well-researched articles your best allies.
Your content marketing campaign is designed to plan, create, publish, and share high-quality content with your target audience. Quality content is key, which means that your content should be knowledge-based and aimed at a specific buyer persona. In order to make sure that your content is up to standards, you have to make sure it is properly researched, provides value to your audience, and is optimized for Google searches. There are many AI tools or artificial intelligence tools that will help you write properly optimized content such as Market Muse which allows you to do long-tail keyword research, among other things.
How To Plan Your Content Marketing Strategy
Whether you’re making your beginning in content marketing, or revisiting your current strategy, you will start the same way. This includes constructing a great content marketing plan. Don’t make your start by pushing out tons of meaningless content. Content production should always be thought of in relation to content performance. Even if your content has deep meaning and adds great value towards your reader, there are still important steps you need to take before publishing any of your content.
In order to plan your marketing strategy, you must first create a content calendar. In a content calendar you will log all the information necessary to implement your content strategy, including your titles, important research, and content outlines. If you ever get lost along the way in your content creation process, you can use your content calendar as a road-map to keep you on track.
How to Create A Content Calendar
To create a content calendar you can use tools like Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets. However, online you can find many templates and examples that can guide you through customizing your own personal content calendar. Take a look at one below from Hubspot.
When you have a structure and template that you like for your content calendar it’s time to start planning your content creation. Have all of your titles and subheaders ready so when writing commences, there’s no reason to stop. Among your titles, you should also have related keywords, helpful research, and any other notes that will help you in creating your piece of content with as much value as possible.
Also, search your title on Google, curate the top ten ranking articles on page one of the search results. Use these articles for research, and make sure your content is better than all ten of your competitor’s articles combined.
It’s also a great practice to search questions in Google that relate to the topic you are writing about. This way you can ensure you are bringing quality solutions to your audience. To better understand what your readers want, you can learn how to use SEMRush, a great all-round AI tool widely used by industry professionals. SEMRush can help in conducting research, and tell you exactly which questions to answer for your audience. Follow these important tips before publishing content and moving onto content distribution.
Now that you have your content calendar ready, it’s time to begin your content creation process. Before you start writing, think to yourself what type of content you want to be putting out. The good thing about content marketing is the plethora of options you have when it comes to content creation. Below we will show you some prime examples of some successful content segregated by content type.
- Blog Posts
When deciding on a good quality blog post to show you as an example, we turned to Search Engine Journal. Search Engine Journal puts out informative content in the field of search engine optimization. In this article, they explain clearly how to become better ranked in Google and how to incorporate SEO into your content strategy.
SEO friendly content – Article
Gary V is one of the greatest digital marketers and industry leaders today. He truly has a way of talking to his audience and captivating them. He holds nothing back and shares his information with everybody. This piece of content is actually a Vlog about Why You Should Vlog. Perhaps you will find some motivation here.
Gary Vee – Why You Should Vlog
- Informational Guides
Here is an excellent example of an informational guide by industry influencer and founder of Backlinko, Brian Dean. Consequently, his educational content is focused on content marketing statistics divided by content type. As you take a look through his content, note how well written and put together his article is, and also how much valuable information he is providing.
Backlinko – Article
The Joe Rogan Experience is one of the most popular podcasts of all time. Since 2009 this podcast has been hosted by UFC commentator, comedian, actor, and TV host Joe Rogan. Running between 1 hour and 4 hours long, these episodes regularly receive millions of views.
Joe Rogan Podcast
Companies like Hubspot are known for their website’s stellar infographics when it comes to visual content. Infographical content is where education meets art. If you can pull off the creation of an appealing and informative infographic you will hit a large audience.
HubSpot – Article
- Case Studies
Case studies are important to follow when gathering research, but they can also be important to your audience. Everybody wants facts and statistics to make sure they have their information straight. Case studies provide an in-depth and thorough investigation on a certain topic or subject. Here’s Niel Patel giving some tips and pointers on how to create a great case study.
NeilPatel – Article
When you have decided which content to produce, you can begin writing, or whatever method is needed to develop your type of content. As we established above, always aim to give your audience value by providing them with the best quality content possible. Developing your content should be a well-thought-out process, but don’t forget to have some fun while you are doing it. We have the ability to create original content when we have fun because we are engaging the creative part of our brains.
If you’re writing a quick how-to article or a brief post, 1000 words are sufficient. If you are writing a long-form educational piece, you should be writing between 2500 and 3500 words. By following these easy steps you’ll be delivering your content in an appropriate length, thus meeting the reader’s expectations.
When you’re nearing the completion of creating your content, don’t publish your work right away. At this stage, we are only halfway to our goal of successfully implementing a content marketing strategy. Yes, your content is valuable and appealing to your audience, yes you checked your spelling and punctuation with Grammarly, and yes you double-checked that your research and sources are 100 percent accurate. But you forgot the bread and butter to this digital marketing strategy, Content Optimization.
It’s really great if you design and create your content as outlined above, but you take it to the next level completely when you optimize your content for Google. One of the main reasons for optimizing your content is so you can have better content than your competitors that rank on page one of Google Search. If your competitor and you have the same exact article, but you optimize your content and your competitor does not, you will outrank them in Google with ease.
Aside from grammar checking and fact checking, you’re going to need additional AI tools to begin your content optimization. Artificial Intelligence tools can show you exactly what and how to write to meet all of Google’s search engine ranking factors. Most of these AI tools have free tutorials that make it easy for learning how to optimize your content from top to bottom.
Using Content Optimization Tools
Below are some of our favorite content optimization tools and how to use them… As stated above, most of these tools have tutorials on their website and are highly recommended when first associating yourself with AI.
SEMRush is indispensable when it comes to content optimization. SEMRush conducts keyword research for you, tracks the online behavior of your competitors and plans out crucial information for you such as titles, topics, and what kind of content template to use. The features of this tool are top-notch and can be trusted by anyone looking to expand their SEO efforts.
The ultimate tool in content optimization considered by many experts, is MarketMuse. This tool explains to you where exactly a keyword needs to go in your content, and more importantly, why. Like SEMRush, MarketMuse will also give you useful keywords, but MarketMuse provides far more than SEMRush. Out of the hundreds of ranking factors Google has set, MarketMuse scans and audits your content for each factor, resulting in pristine content. Tools like this can be very expensive, but well worth it when needing to get ranked overnight.
- Google Analytics
This tool is best known for researching and analyzing the behavior of your website visitors, as well as helping you understand new trends in content marketing and SEO.
Ubersuggest is Niel Patel’s invention. This tool helps you to properly analyze your websites organic traffic and SEO, as well as providing you with content creation suggestions geared towards promoting yourself effectively.
- Google Search Console
This free tool by Google helps you to troubleshoot and fine-tune any issues you may encounter with your website’s SEO. This tool will see your content and website just as Google does. Using this tool will greatly increase your content optimization.
It can seem daunting at first to start using AI and learning the fundamentals of SEO, but the research and learning is well worth it when you see the results content optimization has to offer. Your content marketing strategy is only as strong as your optimization strategy. The great thing is you won’t need to re-think your strategy from scratch, these tools help you to take your existing content and optimize it to refresh, repost, or share it with your audience for the first time, but at its highest performance capacity.
Publish Your Content And Track Your Success
After you are done fully optimizing your content as outlined above, you’re ready to publish your work and track your success. You can use SEMRush, Google Analytics, or Hubspot to track all of your traffic and rankings for each individual article, or even your whole content strategy as a whole if you wish. If you skip this step, you won’t truly know how your readers are perceiving your content.
Google Analytics can be used to collect demographic data to see which platforms your audience uses most when reading content. This way you can release your work through the proper channels to hit your target audience.
Additional Content Marketing Pro Tips
Before we leave you to create your own digital marketing strategy, here are some content marketing pro tips to always remember. These tips may be a little generic and seem like it goes without saying. But actually, these tips are the secrets to content marketing.
1. Write mainly for your audience, not for promoting your products and services. If you have followed this guide thoroughly, your quality content will do the marketing for you.
2. Really go in depth and analyze your users’ behavior – User behavior consists of many metrics including special visitors, bounce rate, pages per session, and more.
3. Engagement is key – When you get mentioned, or someone likes, comments, or subscribes to you, you’re driving your engagement. This is going to get you known online as an industry expert.
4. Invest in SEO – This metric is as important, if not more so, than any other metric. It pays off to familiarize yourself with the basics of SEO so you can fully capitalize on your new content marketing strategy.
5. Stay consistent – Your audience will appreciate a consistent approach to content distribution. Were not saying to post as much content as you possibly can, quite the opposite. You can play around with the amount of times you post per day and at what time of the day to see what works best with your readers.
6. Social Media Made Simple – If you are engaging in social media sharing, we recommend using a tool like Buffer or Hootsuite. These tools can automate all of your social media posts and make publishing content for you so much easier, Especially if you are posting a lot of content daily.
During every part of your content marketing process, keep these tips in mind, as they can make or break your whole strategy. Staying on the sturdy path you made in your content calendars, start at the beginning and work your way towards publishing. Just like every successful industry expert out there will tell you, trial and error is sometimes necessary and will only make your strategy more effective.
Always Be Testing
All in all, content marketing is the way to go when wanting to increase your organic traffic and provide value to your audience at the same time. Marketing strategies designed to connect and engage with your audience are constantly changing and can have subtle differences, but the key principles are always going to be the same with content marketing. Hopefully, this article has helped to reduce the pain points involved in the process of content creation.
If you have any issues throughout implementing your content marketing strategy we highly recommend reaching out to a digital marketing professional. Most Digital marketers will perform a free website audit and point you in the right direction. With that being said, if you follow our instructions to the T, you won’t run into too many issues along your way to achieving content marketing success.