6 step checklist to an awesome content strategy + FREE Infographic

6-Step Checklist To An Awesome Content Strategy

Congratulations! The fact that you’re here means that you’ve committed to Content Marketing and you recognize its value in your marketing strategy.

Before you start creating content, make sure you know what you’re trying to achieve with that content. Content just for the sake of SEO or filling up a website will seldom do well.

Here is a checklist to build an awesome content marketing strategy:

1. Know your customer:

To create relevant content, it is very important that you know WHO you’re talking to. Every customer is different, but given enough data, you can find common threads and patterns in groups of your audience.

So collect as much information about your customers as you can – their age, gender, income level, geographical locations, profession, their pain points, how your product solves their issues, etc.

A great way to organize all this information is by creating customer personas, complete with a pseudo name and actual customer questions & concerns.

This will help you target specific customer types with your content, and help you get ideas for content topics.

Consider Headspace, a company which offers guided meditations for a healthy mind. It offers its services to both individuals & companies. So it will have at least 2 customer personas, say, Individual Irene & Corporate Craig. Both of these will have different motivations and different purchase journeys to avail its services.

Understanding your customers will help you reach your customers at every point in their journey.

2. Set your goals:

Your marketing goals work towards reaching your business goals. So they should always be in alignment.

Setting smart goals for your content helps you keep your expectations in check. Each piece will have a different purpose & should be judged accordingly.

It is rare that each piece will serve ALL your goals.

In line with the customer purchase journey, your goals might be:

    • Awareness Stage – In this stage, your goals might be to create Brand awareness for your business or even more broadly – Issue awareness about the pain point your product is solving. Educational content works very well for this stage.
      For Headspace, for example, this content might be something like “How to increase employee productivity?”, “Feeling stressed? 5 things you can do to relieve it”
    • Consideration Stage – In this stage, your audience already knows about you and thinks you might be able to help. So your content will be more product-focused like “How to use Headspace to focus on work?”, “How can Headspace help me?”
    • Decision Stage – In this stage, your audience is ready to choose you. Your content here will be about helping them take the final step – Free trials, reviews and testimonials work well here
    • Retention Stage – This stage comes after the typical purchase journey. It is all about maintaining a relationship with your customer, post-purchase. FAQs, Tech support, etc. work well in this stage.

    3. Research content topics

    One of the biggest dangers in marketing is creating a one-person market. You liking something does not mean that your customers will like it. You need to create content that’s relevant to your audience.

    Some methods of finding the right kind of content are:

    • Google Search – Write your keywords in the search bar and let google autocomplete for you to find common questions. Observe which content is ranking high in Google organic rankings to get ideas.
    • Tools like Buzzsumo helps you find trending content in your niche.
    • If any of their concerns are not addressed or if you can answer them better, create content about that.
    • Communicate with your customers, and find what kind of topics would interest them. You can speak to them on your Social media pages, forums in your niche, Quora or send out surveys.

    Content addressing customer concerns that have not been answered well can perform really well.

    4. Find the correct content format

    The best content format for your brand depends on your product and your customer persona. If your customer is more academic in nature, a blog post or white-paper might work best, and if your customer spends a lot of time commuting, perhaps a podcast would be the best format for you.

    5. Amplify your content

    Different customer personas spend time on the internet in different ways. If your company benefits professionals, you might have a better chance of reaching them on LinkedIn than on Snapchat. Go where the customer is.

    Also, the same person can react differently based on the platform you reach them on. Let’s say Corporate Craig is scrolling down his Instagram account – his mindset & expectation here will be different from when he’s scrolling down LinkedIn.

    The right sharing platform can help you reach your customer when they’re most accepting of your product/service.

    6. Measure results

    Everything you create has a goal assigned to it and you should measure its performance against those goals. It is important that you don’t compare the performance of content pieces that are created for different stages in the customer journey, as they serve different purposes. Selecting the most appropriate KPIs for your goals is critical.

    Some good KPIs might be:

    • Unique visitors to Website, Bounce Rate, Time Spent on Website
    • Social Media Engagement
    • Conversions, Leads generated, phone calls received, forms filled

    So there it is – 6 steps to an awesome content strategy.
    Does your content strategy check all the boxes? Let me know in the comments!

    I am taking my Alexa rank to the next level with Blogchatter

117 thoughts on “6 step checklist to an awesome content strategy + FREE Infographic

  1. Nowadays it has been said that “Content is king and marketing is queen” to get sucess in this highly competitive field. so had covered all points very well. will keep in mind while planning next thing for my blog. #surbhireads

  2. #MyFriendAlexa#DelhibloggerReads. A very interesting and useful article on content writing marketing and strategy.will help in moving ahead on career

  3. This was one very useful post for bloggers such as me who are looking to increase traction on the blog website.
    I specially liked the ‘one person market’ term. As content creators, sometimes we become very attached to the stuff we have written. This calls for a change in attitude.

  4. That’s a really interesting and comprehensive checklist. I never gave in much thought about the format of the content. But, you are right, it also plays an important role in content marketing.

  5. I so wish I had read such kind of posts early on in my blogging journey. I wouldn’t have made so many mistakes!
    But, I am glad you are sharing such information. It will be very helpful to bloggers and guide them in working on their content.

  6. I had never heard of buzzsumo befor this. These are some really good tips that I could use for my content though I’m not running a business. I just have to modify these and use them.

  7. Very well written. Using simple words you have explained every important aspect of content marketing. This is indeed going to be very helpful. Bookmarking this post 🙂
    #readbypreetispanorama for #MyFriendAlexa

  8. Yes yes yes
    Finally someone is laying out a good plan.
    Know the customer
    Be in the customers shoes
    Be where the customer is

    I totally understand bcos that’s how I understand their pain points.

    Awesome post

  9. Hi Ishita,
    Your post does help me.
    I’ve been a content writer for a loan based company since the past 3 months.
    Finding topics to write, aiming for the right audience, trying to be in trend is what revolves around me.
    But yes, we do keep a strategy in order to get better.

  10. Quite a comprehensive list this. What you said about amplification is so important. The same content can be tweaked while posting on different platforms for maximum impact.

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