Content is the main element of digital marketing. Whether you are thinking about SEO, PPC, SMM, Email, etc. it is very difficult to do anything without quality content. Content is vital in all range of formats like video, articles, blog posts, images, and any other. We may need to lock in on short-form articles, long-form, whitepapers, gated content, video, webinars for B2B, or go with quick hits and short formats for B2C depending on our target audience. Irrespective of our current level of planning and strategy and our organization’s target audience, we know we can improve the return on investment of our content and be more efficient in the process of generating it. Here are we are going to discuss how to maximize your content budget and avoid wasting money.
Merge Content Needs with Goals
Remember that the SEO and other digital marketing channel goals should not be very much different than their target audience focus needs 100% unique and separate content to be generated for the other channels.
It is very important to align the content need with the goals. You need to work backward to see how each required content contributes to the customer journey. And from there only you would be able to find the shared content needs that will funnel into the overall goals.
Creating Strategy is Very Important
You can never win big in marketing without a proper strategy. A strategy is not stating that you are going to create 5 blog posts per week, do some SEO to them, and share them on social media channels.
You need to decide your goals, do research, and create a bigger strategy. Along with that, the most important thing that you need to know is:
- What you are producing?
- For whom you are producing?
- What is your expected content ROI at a top-level as well as channel-specific one?
- What are your marketing channels and bring all of your marketing channels to the same table?
Make sure that you have understood all content needs and created a cohesive strategy.
Learn from the Past to do Better in Future
You need to deep-dive into analytics, channel metrics and account’s results from the sales team.
To speculate on what performed well or what we want to promote, you are required to gain insight from what has worked and what hasn’t in the past.
If you trust how the content was optimized, shared, and promoted in the past with the data you have, then you can use this to influence the strategy going forward.
Take Competitors as a Source of Learning
You might be far better than you are competitors still, there is always something to learn from them.
Even if you are doing basic review and documentation of the topics, formats, and engagement on competitor websites, then that can also be helpful for you.
Always try not to repeat the mistakes which your competitors have committed and we can leverage what appears to be working with our better and different take on the topics.
Always Listen to Your Audience
Going beyond the review of the past in analytics and reporting for engagement and what has worked well, talk with your team. Or, even better, talk to your customers.
- What are their pain points?
- What are the questions they had when in the research and buying process?
- What content helped them?
- What do they wish you had told them?
- How could they have found you faster?
There are many other questions that can be asked from both internal and external stakeholders.
Use conversations, surveys, and meetings to get this info and see how it aligns with goals, topics, and the plan.
Pull Your Subject Matter Experts
Creating content is an investment for an organization. In case, if you are paying to the external writers, photographers, videographers, subject matter experts, etc., then you are investing a lot. On the other hand, if you have internal subject matter experts, then you have a wealth of knowledge readily available. In that case, the challenge is to unlock that knowledge and turn it into the content. You have goals, got a strategy, you know what is the competition, and what your channels need. Now, the thing remains to produce the content.
You need to pull your Subject Matter Experts by:
- Getting bullet points from them.
- Interviewing them.
- Writing an initial draft and have them add to it.
- Having them give you an initial draft.
Now, with little guidance and the right process get valuable content out of them.
Use the Same Content in Multiple Ways
The main objective of investment in content should be to get as much as you can out of it. If you can pull your content in multiple digital marketing channels, for uses beyond marketing, and by packaging it in different ways, then you can get the most out of it. Along with that, being able to reuse the same content (unless it is breaking news or tied to a trending topic), you can find ways to reform it and put different angles on it down the road. You can think about multiple formats, channels, and ways to revisit and repurpose content topics, and this way you can get even more out of original pieces of content without even starting from scratch.
Keep an Eye on the Content Performance
Practically, the things won’t play out exactly as we predict. So, it is important to have some level of agility built into the strategy or process.
In other words, you need to constantly measure the performance of content against goals at the top level and within digital marketing channels and be willing to adjust the strategy as going.
If you are drawing good attention on a certain topic, putting more time into that topic and delaying another might be the answer.
In other cases, if you are not seeing traction, then it is better to move onto other areas of the strategy or adjust the promotional and optimization plans.
Yes, you need the long-term strategy, but you have to build in the mechanisms to be able to adjust as you go.
We have to invest in content as it is a focal point and necessary function of virtually all digital marketing channels that too including search marketing. Be proactive with the content marketing approach and find ways to save money, that is more efficient, and you will see better performance as a bonus as well.