2 golden rules to help define your content marketing program

We did read in the previous 2 articles, that content is king and Now that you have developed Content, what next – all you need to know, and how do you go about slicing your content. In my early interactions with business owners and marketers, I often find them asking the question – How do we define your content marketing program. They will often come back to me and tell me that they want to send out some brochures/flyers/case studies or some infographics of how they are offering services and great value to their clients. According to me, all of these pieces of content are futile for the anonymous user and will not help you meet your objectives.

Why do I say this? Simple. The person who is just about visiting your website or visiting your social profiles or any other digital asset is only interested to finding out if you are able to solve his problem. He does not really care about ‘How you do’ and ‘what you do’. He is interested in getting his question answered ‘what’s in it for me’. If you can answer that question in the first 20 seconds or so,  there is a chance that he will navigate further on your digital property, else he is on his way out in any case.

I feel content needs to be designed, keeping this core objective in mind. How do you stay ‘topical’ to your potential client’s needs and how do you keep their curiosity, so that they keep coming back for more or increase stickiness and longevity on your digital properties. Now what I said is no greek or latin, but is a known truth for years. Just take a look at any publishing site, newspaper, TV and you will find that they are trying to generate curiosity all the time and they are always talking about what the audience wants to hear. That is the real crux to define your content marketing program. There are so many sweet spots for you to identify, what the audience is looking for and your challenge is really trying to figure out ‘how to weave’ your content into a trending story.

Let’s split this into 2 parts,

1) Identifying the trending content that matters &

2) weaving in your content into this trending content

  1. Identifying the trending content that matters

Based on the industry, you are in, you will find so many sources of information to help you decide what is trending. Some of the common ones, which are usually helpful include

  1. Speaking agenda at Events – Look at what people are speaking about in events that matter to you. You will usually find that the topics are selected in such a way that will ensure maximum attendance
  2. Media articles – Look at what the trades are talking about. They want to be relevant to their target audience and so will publish content pieces that matter to their target audience.
  3. Competition – Look at some of your competition and what they are talking about in terms of webinar topics, white paper topics etc. You tend to learn a lot from your competition.

Setting up an ongoing rigour on these activities and structuring your research will help you identify content candidates for your programs. You can make a decision, based on what matters the most to you and where you feel you can contribute the best. You might also want to read Content Marketing Strategy to drive Thought Leadership and expand segments

              2. Weaving in your content

Now this is what needs some level of expertise. The content needs to be ‘weaved in’ without sounding overly promotional. Deep Knowledge about your products and services and how they impact the target market will be very handy. Initially, we will obviously need help from your side, but over time, we have managed to take this task up, completely within the agency. We will of course continue to value you as a consultant or advisor.[irp]

There is no ‘one way’’ that is right. It does involve some amount of ‘trial’ and ‘error’ to get things right. But it is worth the effort, as the content pieces that you will generate will help you achieve several of your content objectives. For details on how you can effectively design your content marketing programs, kindly reach out to me or wait for my next articles in this series.

This was to put it very simply. It does take some effort to really define your content marketing program. The key is to be able to offer value to the audience without becoming intensely sales focused in the message. Have you been able to define your content marketing program yet, Well, what are you waiting for?

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