A content strategy is a long-term plan that guides practitioners in planning, creating, positioning and measuring content to achieve defined business goals. Its success depends on designating a leader who will make content a priority, not a second thought.
Like most business strategies, begin your content strategy plan with a mission statement that defines what the purpose of your content is. For example, Google’s mission statement is: “’To organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.” Note that this is a short, memorable and clear statement. When in doubt about context for your content, return to the mission statement for guidance.
Plan. Conduct a content audit and analyze your results from 2011. What are its strengths and weaknesses? What gaps need to be filled and what opportunities are available? What can pose a risk to executing your content and having it be received well by the intended audience? Have a goal for each piece of content created. Set goals using the SMART technique: specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely. Another part of planning requires an editorial calendar identifying topics.
Create. Why are you creating content and for whom? To promote, engage, inform, or entertain clients and prospects are common reasons. To be successful, turn to professionals who know how to engage an audience. Blogging is becoming more widespread among all industries. Be sure to create content that is useable, shareable, findable and customer focused. Sources for content are writers, subject matter experts, and existing material that can be curated.
Position. Identify the right channels for content and the right time in the sales cycle. Something every business should be considering for 2012 is setting up a mobile version of their website. Also, if not already done set up a dashboard to combine multiple views of social media sites, blogs, and websites. You can use a single display to see important information that supports your goals. Stay in control by monitoring.
Measure. Will you measure customer engagement or customer satisfaction? There are many ways to use key performance indicators – metrics to measure progress toward your goals. The new Google analytics will provide easy visualization of audience engagement in 2012. However, to measure meaningful impact requires a personal review of the interactions, not just a calculation of numbers.
Your content strategy plan will get you through the year with measured results on how you have added value to the company’s bottom line. Anything else you will rely on to make your content strategy plan successful for 2012?