Tag Archives: content plan

Creating Quality and Relevant Content Effeciently

There are so many good things here from this piece by Andy Betts on Search Engine Watch.

Content marketing growth is about evolution, not revolution. There has been no revolution in the content marketing space. People have been publishing content since the days of cavemen carving on cave walls. Clearly, organizations are now becoming more content savvy and consuming media at maximum capacity. However, the key question, challenge, and opportunity for your business doesn’t lie within a tactical, 101, best practice document. The answer lies within the heart of a business, its culture, and how it scales its operation and produces quality and relevant content efficiently.

That’t the key isn’t it. Producing content that is relevant and cost effective.

Curation fits this role almost perfectly but I’ve also noticed a few things with our own content marketing I wanted to share.

In all the years I’ve done content marketing I’ve noticed that content falls within a spectrum of utility and the shiny object. Utility content is when someone is looking or searching for a specific need or want. For instance, we get quite a bit of traffic from people trying to understand how to monetize with content curation. This type of content solves a pain, a need, a  yearning question. 

The shiny object is content that doesn’t answer specific questions but  creates traffic. These are infographics, short quick hit videos, curation to some extent, and non evergreen news. These don’t typically bring someone down the purchase cycle but play a role in awareness.

You need both of these elements to have a successful content plan. So how do you produce both of these with quality and efficiently?

I speak from experience here because I’ve tried to create content just about any way you can think of. The best process I found is:

Know your Audience

This is one of the hardest elements of content marketing. Knowing what to write about and what will capture your audiences attention. I do believe the persona exercises and our own exercise in finding your target market in social media will help. But it comes down to knowing enough so you have empathy with your audience.  You know what they feel, what they desire, what they dream about, and what frustrates them. When you get to this level of understanding creating content becomes less of a challenge.

Know Your Voice

One of the best ways to discover your voice (or your organizations) is to put in writing your beliefs. What do you believe about the business your in? What do you believe about the future? What do you believe about your market? What rules wont you break in your market? What rules will you break? Do these align with what you know about  your audience. Finally is this a unique take in your market?

Create a System that Works For You

This last element is one of the most important. I should mention that you want a system that “works” and by works it should contain elements of measurement. Without measuring your content marketing effort then creating content doesn’t work. So a system is a full cycle system. From ideation, creation, to measurement. The system has to be clear, concise, and effective every step of the way. These concepts could be an individual post and I think I will create one here this week– but let’s cover them at a high level. For all three elements (ideation, creation, and measurement)  you want to measure the time, process, and effort it takes to accomplish each one individually.

You should be able to look at these results and make an assessment if the system you created is effective.

 

Are These the 4 Quadrants of a Content Marketing Plan?

I came across this post from CMI and thought it was spot on. The lead quote and the image that accompanies is something that I think anybody employing content marketing should really understand. Let’s break it down a bit.

The consumer attention span is about the size of a gnat right now. We move on to the next thing super, super quickly. So it’s really important to be topical and relevant.

I see attention span only decreasing as more and more distractions will enter our daily lives, especially as younger generations embrace this near instant technology.

So when we take about being topical and relevant that means clearly defining your value and your niche your serving. This is important not only in content in general but really important in curation.

At the same time, our industry has been going down this real-time marketing train. We’re all trying to be more and more real-time, which tends to be, in large measure, sort of chasing whatever is happening and trying to attach yourself to it, which might be topical but not relevant to your brand.

This is true but the challenge I’ve always had with this is does this really convert? We’ve found that a mix of 40% what I would call real time content with a 60% focus on evergreen works really well.

So I think it’s the push-pull of, ‘How do I remain agile enough to be topical but at the same time staying relevant and true to what it is you’re trying to communicate and build for our brand?’

This is the challenge you face even if your not a brand. A big mistake I think people make is injecting pop culture into their content to force some form of relevancy.

That’s where I think the graphic here really defines a well rounded strategy. An exercise worth doing is taking these 4 quadrants of content (produced, evergreen, execution, and perishable) and mapping where you currently are. Also map where you would want to be. Then map it back to what you can really execute.

It’s also interesting that they placed curation in the evergreen/executional quadrant. I’d agree because good curation can stand the test of time (that is unless your curating to an audience that is fed by the latest and greatest, E.X. celebrity gossip).

Good stuff here, read more below:

Image courtesy of contentmarketinginstitute.com