A is for Audience.
The first thing to consider when creating a content strategy is your audience, who are they and what are they interested in?
A great content strategy always starts with the audience. There is little or no point in creating content that you or your boss likes, but bears no relation to what your audience wants to know. You are not doing it for yourself, and let’s be honest your audience might be, in fact probably is completely different than you.
That is not to say that you cannot understand them, or put yourself in their shoes, but it is a fact that you may have to consciously do that, you will not naturally speak to them in the right tone, register or language.
If you work for a DIY organisation and you can create high quality content on a vast range of subjects, none of which actually interests you. You do not have to be interested in the subject to create great content. But your audience does, if they are not interested, then it’s not great content, it’s just content.
So, how do you work out what your audience wants – well you could ask them if you wanted – pretty straightforward research if you have a budget, slightly harder, but still possible if you don’t.
Some things you could do are:
- Ask your sales team – what questions do they get asked, what are people asking about in sales meetings?
- Listen – use social listening tools (hootsuite is a good free one) to listen to what people are talking about in social media.
- Search – blog search, news search, or just straight google search can all be used to get a view of what people are interested in.
- Competitors – what are they talking about? This can be really useful, but bear in mind, your competition may know less than you do, you really don’t know how switched on they actually are, they may just be stabbing in the dark.
- Customer services – what are people talking to your customer services team about?
- Existing research – most companies have lots of research about the place, it is just a case of laying your hands on it and pulling out the information that you need.
What you need to end up with is some sort of basic pen portrait of your audience;
- What are they interested in?
- What do they read?
- What age range are they?
- What are their issues?
- What are their needs?
The objective then is to look at your company objectives and tie them to what your audience wants to hear.
Your content strategy should sit comfortably where your company needs – what you want to talk about, overlaps those of your audience – what they want to hear.
B is for Business – what are you going on about?
C is for Calling – to action
D is for Depth – a key dimension to your strategy
E is for Educate – teach, teach and teach some more
F is for Fribbling – you will find out what
G is for Giveaway – give something away, but not everything
H is for Helicopters – because everyone loves helicopters
I is for Idea – you really need one
J is for Journey – take your readers on one
K is for Kissing – one contact, many meanings
L is for Lists – everyone loves lists
M is for Mixing your media
N is for New – not old
O is for Organised output
P is for Podcasts – who to avoid sounding crap
Q is for Questions – you need to ask them
R is for Reviews – review honestly and openly
S is for Slideshare – how to use it properly
T is for Testing, test and test again
U is for Useful – it really needs to be useful
V is for Video – how to use it well
W is for When – when to do what you do
X is for Xerig – we will find out when we get there
Y is for Yagi – which is another great word we found
Z is for Zombies – we all love zombies, don’t we?
(We can help you with some or all of this, just give us a call if you want some help – 07765 406530)
mcm2 – content marketing experts based in Cheshire and the North West