According to the 2019 B2B Benchmarks report from the Content Marketing Institute, 39% of marketers do not have a documented content creation strategy. This is unfortunate, but it is not unusual. There are many businesses that perform content marketing without having a clear plan—and it’s evident. (Ineffective distribution and weak messaging are just a few of the red flags.)
At the end of the day, these companies are shooting themselves in the foot by investing time and resources into content that doesn’t perform. In our opinion, if you’re not going to do it correctly, there’s no sense in doing it at all. Fortunately, there is a simple method to ensure that you’re working efficiently—just have a documented strategy for creating content.
The Advantages of Creating a Content Strategy
A strong content strategy can help you improve every component of your content marketing efforts, making your life simpler and your material more successful. If the prospect of coming up with a plan makes you uncomfortable or seems like a waste of time, here are five compelling reasons to reconsider.
1) A content production plan ensures that your material is in line with your objectives.
Everything you do is meant to help you achieve your larger corporate goals. If you can’t explain why it’s necessary, don’t be doing it. A solid plan helps you stay focused and organized, allowing you to come up with better ideas, refine brand messaging, and create cohesive content that has a real effect.
Note that a long-term plan does not necessitate that you have every piece of content planned out for a year; it means you’ve set bounds and indicators to help you keep your larger objectives.
Your content strategy goals will be influenced by your brand strategy. If you haven’t created a brand strategy yet, here’s our step-by-step guide to doing so—as well as a few pointers to ensure your content strategy is consistent with your brand strategy.
2) You can increase your ROI.
It takes time, energy, and money to create good content. Your return on investment suffers if your material isn’t effective. A content plan aids in the improvement of your outcomes while also assisting you in better allocating resources. You can use this information to find ways to improve your production process, make the most of what you have, and recruit reinforcements if required.
Tip: You’ll need the appropriate staff to maintain a well-oiled machine—but it doesn’t have to result in a hiring frenzy. Find out exactly what positions you’ll need to hire for to make sure everything is covered (even if you’re a two-person team). To get more mileage from your content, try experimenting with a divisible content strategy. And here’s what you should look for when selecting a content agency if you need any additional help.
3) You’ll be able to see what’s working and improve as you go.
The fact is that you can’t always predict what will work best, and content marketing necessitates a lot of experimenting, testing, and fine-tuning. A plan is essential to help you set goals, pick KPIs, and measure related indicators so that you may discover whether or not your efforts are effective.
If your content efforts aren’t working, you can quickly alter course without wasting time or money on ineffective content campaigns. Keep in mind that a solid content strategy offers not just structure, but also the ability to modify things as necessary.
If you’re not sure what to track, this article will show you how metrics can help you improve your performance.
4) A content strategy unifies the team.
There are a lot of people working on content, including project managers, copywriters, designers, and editors. If there isn’t a thorough approach or plan in place, it’s easy to get compartmentalized or have communication problems. That’s why having a documented strategy is so important. It aids in the identification of objectives and eliminates uncertainty.
It’s important to document your content strategy and keep it in an easy-to-find location. Also, find out who the people are that could answer queries, give permissions, or do other tasks related to your company’s content.
5) It is a method to produce high-quality content.
Investing involves putting money into things, but content marketing is comparable in that it necessitates a continual and sustained effort to achieve the best results. It’s not about producing as much as possible; it’s all about delivering a consistent message. A content strategy is essential for achieving this effect. Instead of throwing money at many one-off pieces or scattered campaigns, a content approach allows you to create a continuous flow of material by taking a more holistic approach to creation.
Even if you only publish once a quarter, your material should always be of value to the people you’re aiming to reach. Try these ideas to make sure your content is valuable whether it teaches, amuses, or inspires.