The biggest reason companies fail with their digital efforts, be it content marketing or social media, is lack of a proper strategy. Some very interesting research from Content Marketing Institute last year confirmed this, both for B2B and B2C companies.
Joe Pulizzi even went as far as to say that B2B marketers with a content marketing strategy were 300% more likely to be effective. I’m a lot more modest than Joe, so I will just say that you can be a lot more efficient working with content if you take the time to create a proper strategy.
If you’re looking for compelling reasons to invest in a content strategy, or if you need to get buy-in from above, here are some key points I’ve found:
1. You can save time and money with a strategy
Creating content on an ad-hoc basis is very expensive. You also run the risk of creating content that someone in the company decides is nice to have, rather than content that your target audience needs. With a content strategy you avoid both the ad-hoc content creation and the nice to have content.
2. You can create a lot less content
One of the biggest issues in many companies, especially large ones, is that far too much content is created. I’m talking about different departments or business areas creating the same content, as well as content created for one occasion and never used again. A content strategy can help you break down the silos and also ensure that one piece of content is adapted for use in several channels and several times.
3. The quality of your content will improve
A content strategy ensures that all the content created in the company is based on the needs of your target audience and your business goals. In addition to that it will use your Tone of voice and visual look for a consistent feel to your content. All in all this means that the quality of your content will improve greatly.
4. Your content distribution will improve
A lot of companies create excellent content, post it on their website and then just sit back. This almost always guarantees that very few people will see it. A content strategy looks at distribution and reuse of every piece of content. It includes sharing in social channels, optimizing content for search and publishing in several channels. In addition it can integrate technologies like marketing automation and pipeline marketing. Ensuring that your content will be seen by a lot more people.
5. Improved handling and measuring
Two common issues for companies is that they don’t look after their content once it’s been published and they don’t measure its effectiveness. Very often the reason for this is the same – lack of a strategy that sets out responsibilities for handling and follow-up as well as defining what to measure and how to do it. A proper content strategy will ensure that both issues are taken care of.
What did I miss? Let me know in the comments.
This post was originally posted on LinkedIn in April, 2014
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