Welcome to this week’s episode of Content Marketing… Stripped! In it we consider how important it is to get the right balance when setting your content marketing goals. Too much detail can be overwhelming, and not enough can be just as bad.
To see the extremes of these, watch the episode below:
Why are you bothering with content marketing?
It’s easy to get caught up in the fever of content marketing but it’s useful to take some time out and know why you want to create content in your business.
You don’t want to end up like our business owner in the video whose only goals were to be “rich, famous and successful.” Especially when the entire plan consists of being plucked from the crowd by Seth Godin, or Brian Clark or Chris Brogan like Courtney Cox at a Springsteen concert.
You have to know WHY you want to spend the time and effort creating, publishing and promoting content.
- Is it to increase the number of leads or enquiries you get into your business?
- Is it to raise awareness of your business in new markets?
- Is it to build a list of newsletter subscribers to convert into customers?
- Is it to increase the engagement or activity that you have with your current customer base?
- Is it to build numbers on your social media channels to increase your visual credibility?
If you find yourself saying “all of the above” you might want to prioritise so that you don’t get overwhelmed. To help you decide where you should turn your attention first, ask yourself which of the following is most important right now:
- Cash flow
- New leads
- Customer service
Once you’ve prioritised, you can start to think about:
The numbers you need to know
It’s always a good idea to be able to measure progress, and numbers have a great way of showing us if we’re moving towards our goals.
Wherever possible, you should set numbers that you can monitor. For example:
- Increasing social media followers
- More people mentioning your business on social media
- Website traffic
- Time on site, are people staying on your site longer because they’re reading more content?
- Sales. Are you selling more products? Booking more clients?
- Leads and enquiries – how many phone calls / emails are you getting a week?
Measuring the numbers in black and white stops you from guessing if your content marketing strategy is working or not. If your goal is to increase exposure on social media and you know that last month your business got 45 mentions, and this month it’s 300, you know you’re moving towards your goal.
Where to start…
If you’re right at the beginning of your content marketing adventure, where should you start? Here are some suggestions:
Set a production goal
One of the biggest challenges businesses face is producing the content for their marketing. So that should be your first goal. As we know, steady, consistent content publication is the best way to go. Whether it’s blogging once or four times a week, monitoring your production can help you find the best rhythm for creating content in your business.
Study your customer profile
Content marketing is about creating content your customer wants to read. Spending time creating or reviewing your customer profile will help you do this and stop you being distracted by the different content marketing methods.
Focus on one area
You will get better results and experience less overwhelm if you aim to get results in just one area. This stops you getting distracted and spreading yourself too thin.
If you want to build your newsletter list, don’t try and launch a new service which will take up all of your content creation time. If you want to improve the relationship with your current customers, don’t worry about being seen all the time on social media. Pick one area and focus your concentration, brainstorming and content creation skills on it before tackling a new goal.