Your content marketing should aim to provide information, entertainment, or solutions to your audience rather than directly promoting your product or service.
All of your content should consistently communicate your organisation’s personality and values, authority and expertise and help you build a community and connect.
Your strategy should include distributing various mixed media, such as long or short articles, videos, infographics, imagery, case studies or podcasts. Your content should provide value to your audience by addressing their needs, interests, or pain points.
By consistently delivering high-quality content, individuals, businesses and organisations can build trust, establish credibility, and cultivate long-term relationships with their target audience.
If you plan to do any kind of digital or social marketing, you will need great content!
No one ever has enough time for content! It’s easy to become overwhelmed with the sheer amount of effort needed to create and distribute content. Here are some tips to help make generating content more efficient and effective –
Create and work to a Content Plan
A simple Content Plan will give you direction and focus. Creating one might take a while, but it’s worth investing this time. When you have a plan, you can spend time creating content, not thinking about what to create.
Depending on your size and available resource, your plan should last 3, 6 or 9 months.
It’s o.k. to deviate from your plan. It doesn’t have to be totally ‘set in stone’.
Get yourself set up for content
Before you begin to implement your Content Plan, it’s worth taking time out to set yourself up. Having standard text, images, or video footage around the things you will inevitably create content on will save time.
For example, you could create standard short, medium and long text descriptions of your organisation, mission, values, key personnel, products and services. These can then be copied and pasted when needed. You might also want to invest some time in creating an image library.
Always work ahead of yourself
It’s best to have several, maybe at least a month’s worth of content ”in the bank”. This means that when stuff happens, you get busy or go on holiday, your content can still roll. It’s more stressful and less enjoyable if you’re always looking for the next piece at the last minute.
Get somebody else to create your content for you
Even if you’re a solo entrepreneur or a smaller business, getting other people to do your content for you is still possible. Testimonials, feedback or reviews are ready-made pieces of content. Sending out questionnaires to feature clients, suppliers, partners, or other like-minded organisations can be an easy way to generate content.
Switch on your content radar!
Use your content across all of your social and digital channels
I get asked a lot if it’sit’s o.k. to do this. The answer is yes!
All content, including long or short articles, videos, infographics, imagery, case studies or podcasts, should start on your blog. Your blog is the only piece of the digital universe you own and control (you don’t own or control your social media profiles). It makes sense to build up something that you own!
Posting on your blog (updating your website) is also a great way to support your SEO strategy (I’ll cover that in another post).
When content is posted on your blog, the link can be shared appropriately across your social channels. Then, your content can split up into bitesize chunks and be posted on social media, with links back to your blog. We see many blog posts titled 10 ways to (do whatever)… These types of posts should give the author 10 smaller bitesize social posts.
If you’re doing email marketing or contributing content to other channels, you can select your best-performing pieces at the end of the period.
This approach is efficient because you do content once and then use it on all your channels. You don’t ever need to create individual content for each channel.
Find out the best way to work for you.
I recommend a few different approaches to content creation. You need to find out what works best for you!
In my ”1-hour blog post challenge’, you have 1 hour to create the content, publish it on your blog and split and schedule for other channels.
I also recommend locking yourself away for half a day or a full day, turning off email, notifications and devices and creating as much content as possible within this timeframe. Content creation is a lot easier without distractions.
Don’t strive too hard for ”perfection”. You’ll never find it.
Perfectionists often struggle with content creation. Being too precious and reworking a piece several times is not an efficient way to work.
If you’re 95% happy with a piece, your time is better spent publishing that and starting your next piece. I’m not advocating posting poor-quality content. But if you have a piece that you’re 95% happy with, it doesn’t make sense to spend another hour working on that to achieve a satisfaction level of 96%. That hour would have been better spent working on your next piece.
Don’t forget to test and measure
As part of your plan, I recommend allocating time to ”check in” and see how your content is performing. Don’t become overwhelmed by the numerous metrics available on digital channels. Focus on clearly measurable objectives to help you reach your overall goal. This could be website traffic, increased engagement, or more followers/connections.
I wish you the best of luck with your content strategy and creation! Remember to stay focused, stay true to your brand and values, and experiment to find what resonates with your audience. Good luck!