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How to Create a Killer Content Strategy Insights from Jason Miller, Jay Baer, Ann Handley, and Chris Penn
Phase 1: Research and Plan “Content strategy is a combination of inspiration, creativity, and owning a conversation.” Jason Miller, Senior Manager of Content Marketing, LinkedIn
Phase 1: Research and Plan When researching new content, ask: What big conversations are my prospects and customers a part of? How competitive are those conversations? Can I disrupt that space and/or dominate it? -Jason Miller
Phase 1: Research and Plan “Where do your passions and content marketing goals meet? That’s the gateway to your best content marketing idea ever.” -Jason Miller
Phase 1: Research and Plan “The goal of any major content marketing initiative is not to create great content, but to improve your business because of that great content. That’s why it is so critically important to understand the customer journey before the content is produced.” Jay Baer, bestselling author of Youtility, founder of Convince & Convert
Phase 1: Research and Plan When creating a customer journey, consider: Is your content targeted to people who have no relationship with the company (or maybe no awareness at all)? Is it targeted to people who have heard of your business, but have never tried the product, done a demo, etc.? Or is it targeted to people who have already “kicked the tires,” and this content is intended to push them the last mile toward becoming an official lead (or sale)? -Jay Baer
Phase 1: Research and Plan “Content success at the strategic, business level: knowing what a content consumer is likely to know about your business before reading/watching/downloading, and specifying precisely what you want them to do after they experience the magic of your content.” -Jay Baer
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Phase 2: Create Assets “Reframe the idea to relate it to your readers. Why does it matter to them? Ask yourself, ‘So what?’ and then answer, “Because...” Repeat that ‘so what/because’ query and response string as many times as necessary.” Ann Handley, Chief Content Officer of MarketingProfs, author of Everybody Writes
Phase 2: Create Assets When writing marketing content, don’t forget to... Think about what structure helps communicate your point. A how-to guide? A client narrative? Case study? Spend as much time on the headline as you do on the writing itself. Respect the headline. Have someone else edit. Ideally, the person who edits your piece will have a tight grip on grammar, usage, style, and punctuation. Like a bona fide editor. -Ann Handley
Phase 2: Create Assets “Imagine the one person you’re helping with this piece of writing. And then write directly to that person. There is no one way to write, just as there is no one way to roast a turkey or raise a child.” -Ann Handley
Phase 3: Share and Measure “‘Build it and they will come’ has been dead for quite some time. It is relevant in the early days of any new platform, from SEO in the late 1990s to the newest social network, but once the early days are done, ‘build it and they will come’ ceases to be meaningful.” Chris Penn, Vice President of Marketing Technology, SHIFT Communications
Phase 3: Share and Measure Three factors play a role in the spread of every infectious disease. Think about making your content marketing infectious (in a good way): Transmission: Don’t limit yourself to one distribution method. Symptoms: This is how your content spreads. How optimized is it for sharing? Severity/lethality: How fast does your content burn out? How quickly does your audience lose attention? -Chris Penn
Phase 3: Share and Measure “If you create content that is entirely topical (for example, newsjacking blog posts) and nothing timeless, then your content will always burn out quickly. If you create nothing but timeless content, it will lack the engaging vigor needed to convince people to share.” -Chris Penn
Go Forth and Make Great Content As your content marketing skills improve, you’ll create content that fires on all cylinders: Engages your audience Gets lots of love on social media Inspires comments and conversation Drives leads, clicks, or other metrics you care about Inspires existing customers to stick with your business
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