How to start Implementing a content marketing strategy successfully

“How to start implementing a content marketing strategy successfully?”

How to start implementing a content marketing strategy successfully.

A marketer from Elkay asked this question in a workshop. It’s one of marketers’ Top 100 Questions on content marketing.  

If you’re just starting work on a new content marketing strategy, these blogs will help you succeed:

If you’re focused on how to keep a successful strategy going, here are 4 approaches, in order of increasing difficulty.

  1. Continuously refresh your content marketing strategy.
  2. Double down on content that works hardest.
  3. Earn coverage in news media.
  4. Identify an audience need to build your content base. 

Continuously refresh your content marketing strategy 

The most successful marketers work closely with sales, service, product development, and executives to create a one-page strategy. 

A test and learn environmental calls for a big tent
Build a big tent to co-create a mission and strategy, then measure the value of content marketing.

Bring everyone together in a big-tent event so people feel they had a say in your content marketing strategy. Here’s how to maximize buy-in.

To keep everyone aligned, review your strategy with partners from other departments at least once a quarter. Review your analytics together; hypothesize about root causes, and plan experiments to test the hypotheses.

Revisit your strategy at least quarterly to keep it fresh.

Lots of things can change in just 3 months with your company, products and services, and customers’ buying habits. 

Marketers had to pivot for the pandemic and will have to pivot again as the pandemic recedes in the United States. Here are 10 new truths about marketing in the future from the Harvard Business Review.

When you fully aligned marketing with all your key stakeholders, pivots are much easier to execute. 

Double down on content that works hardest 

Your analytics will show which content attracts the most readers, gets the longest sessions, and earns the most backlinks from other sites. Once you can identify your top 10 pieces of existing and new content, it’s time to double down.

success
Tracking content marketing analytics is key to success.

See what you can learn about effective content distribution. What length of content pulls the most readers in? What day of the week works best? Which time of day?

Add internal links from your most successful content to other content. Since you’re always creating new content, most of this work will point readers from your successful evergreen content to your newest creations.

Sharpen up your headlines. Improve readability. Add fresh quotes. Eliminate anything that makes your top-performing content seem dated. 

Since audiences increasingly prefer visual content to text, translate text into visuals – illustrations, photos, infographics, and videos.

It’s fun to work with your shining star content, but all of us produce content that underperforms. What to do?

You face a choice, which will depend largely on how much resource you can free up to address underperforming content. You can either: 

  1. Do less of what’s not working, or 
  2. Systematically fix underperforming content by applying these 6 ideas from the Content Marketing Institute.

Earn coverage in news media

News
Create newsworthy content and newsjack industry stories by working with PR.

Because of the way large organizations usually separate marketing and public relations into two departments, opportunities to extend the reach of content through earned media fall through the cracks.

You can overcome that by making friends in the public relations (PR) or communications department. Brainstorm ideas together. 

Your content team may have a great idea for original research that news or trade media would go for. Your PR team is best at knowing which content is truly newsworthy. 

Truly newsworthy content will reach a bigger audience when you work with your PR team get it into news or trade media. PR also can help you get your content highlighted in the speeches and publications they write. 

Think big.

Your company may be able even to create its own event. For example, REI arrested attention by launching its #OptOutside movement as an alternative to Black Friday.

If you’re not able to create news, how about monitoring the news flow to enable newsjacking, where you hitch a ride on an industry headline? 

The more controversy you can generate, the bigger the news will become.

Newsjacking by David Meerman Scott
Newsjack today’s hot stories to add momentum to your content marketing.

David Meerman Scott, author of the book Newsjacking, shares a story about how an Australian insurance company won news coverage by writing a gimmicky insurance policy, then publicizing it through a news release.

When former President Obama visited Australia, the company issued a news release, offering Obama free insurance against a crocodile attack. Since all the media were covering Obama’s visit, a gimmicky story idea generated huge news for the insurer.

To pursue newsjacking, make a comprehensive list of upcoming events that are expected to occur — those that affect your company, customers, and rivals. Work with PR to think through news angles and prepare as much as you can in advance, so you can strike quickly when news breaks.

Identify an audience need to build your content base

It’s both the hardest and most rewarding job in content marketing – building your content base. 

A content base is one type of content in one medium, consistently delivered over time. A content base takes significant resources to deliver – plus the guts and stubborness to stick with one idea for a long, long time.

What 117 years of content marketing teaches [infographic]
The Michelin brothers boldly printed 35,000 copies of the first Michelin Guide in 1900, when there were only 3,500 cars in France.
Like the Michelin Guide, first published in 1900. Or John Deere’s magazine, The Furrow, the world’s #1 agriculture magazine, which started publishing in the late 1800s.

Many companies have successfully created a unique content base such as:

Is there room in your industry to create a content base? 

To find out, identify the white space in your marketing with a content audit, then ask: what audience need is no one addressing?

Create a content base to fill in that gap. Your audience will appreciate it. Here’s how to create a content base. 

To keep your successful content marketing strategy going:

  • Continuously refresh your content marketing strategy.
  • Double down on content that works hardest.
  • Earn coverage in news media.
  • Identify an audience need to build your content base. 
Top 100 content marketing questions
This is one of marketers’ Top 100 Questions about content marketing. Here are the answers.

“How to start and keep up after implementing a content marketing strategy successfully?” is one of marketers’ Top 100 Questions on content marketing. Here are the answers.

How to start implementing a content marketing strategy successfully.