One of the key aspects of content marketing is to be constantly relevant to your target audience.
This means your content is adding value to the reader at all stages of the buyer journey. However, a lot of marketers fail to create highly relevant content! What could be potential reasons for that?
Most marketers believe volume-driven content will get them the ROI. While in the short run it may be helpful, however in the long run its value-driven content that showcases thought leadership effectively makes the difference. Here are few basic rules to keep in mind while creating your content:
By focusing on three R's—research, refine, and reflect—you can create effective content that delivers better ROI.
This step begins with researching the topics that are top-of-mind with your audience. Create buyer personas and map topics that address their pain points. This research needs to be done regularly to be up to date with their requirements. Few methods that you can explore to research include calling engaged customers, information from sales teams, social listening, content advisory boards, and polls on social platforms like Linkedin. The key is to not only identify broad themes they may be interested in but also map out topics under that which you can cover in detail as part of your content strategy. Some questions you could reflect upon at this stage include:
Once you have identified topics that your target audience is interested in, map it to your internal business priorities to arrive at the pre-final set of topics. Then map these topics with your SEO strategy to arrive at the final set of topics to create content on. Sometimes marketers can make the mistake of chasing trending topics while they may not have any unique point of view on the subject or do not have any solution to offer to their clients. Ask yourself: Can our services help a customer in a meaningful way? If the answer is no, stay away from the topic.
Some questions you could reflect upon at this stage include:
As mentioned earlier, sometimes we may be tempted to pick on a trending topic while we may have no business relevance to it. To avoid such a misstep, take a moment to reflect on how you're positioned to help customers on this topic. Why should your target audience listen to what you have to say? Before creating any content, get solid reasons for the "why" behind pieces of content. It can also spark ideas that help make your content stand out from the competition. If you see yourself finding it difficult to create a point of view around the topic or trying to force-fit messages, back away from that particular topic idea.
Some questions to reflect upon at this stage:
Though there are no shortcuts to creating quality content, these above steps can help you take a targeted approach to it. Working with an expert content marketing agency will ensure that these frameworks are already built into the content creation process, thereby giving better ROI for your content marketing efforts.
Karthik is the Co-Founder of Pink Ladder and Founder & Director of ThoughtStarters. He has over a decade of experience in branding, communication strategy, executive communication & thought leadership marketing, human resource and operations management. He has been instrumental in creating many award winning programs for leading brands like MeritTrac-India's largest Skills Assessment Company, Wipro Technologies and Accenture. He has worked closely with leading universities, industry bodies, analysts and research firms globally and acted as a catalyst in providing best practices and insights to customers across sectors. He has authored papers & articles in international journals & has been a guest speaker at many Ivy League Universities globally. He is a serial entrepreneur, always on the look out for the next big idea! Karthik has a Bachelor's Degree in Computer Science from Bangalore University and an MBA in Marketing & Finance from IIPM Bangalore.