Most small business owners don’t realize how tactical marketing is until they actually start putting a plan together. There’s a good reason for that: those business owners are busy doing the actual running of a business, which is always, unavoidably, reactive.
If your business is anything like the dozen-ish that I’ve worked with, by the time you sit down to analyze your quarterly metrics: you don’t have enough data to measure because you didn’t have the resources to implement your content strategy fully.
I have good news for you: it’s never too late to start planning for 2019.
Here are some fundamentals you need to get ready.
1. Content Calendar
There is never a one size fits all content strategy that’s suitable for every business. You know your customer. Your marketing team knows your message. The cadence of how you deliver that message may not even be the same as your competitors. You won’t know what works until you have something on paper and you can measure the results consistently. That starts with a schedule.
2. A Consistent Voice
Your customers probably use different channels to follow you. The voice across all those channels should match, from your blogs, social media, direct ads, etc. Brand is more than imagery: brand is a story. It’s vital that your team is working from the same map, with the same lexicon, and from the same perspective so your story is consistent every time your customers engage with it.
3. Ubiquity is Overrated
FUN FACT: Not every brand needs to be on every single social media platform. Focus on the channels where it makes sense for you to have a presence. If you have a huge B2B audience, Facebook may not be all that helpful to you. Work with consultants and experts who can help you drive traffic based on a set of predictable buyer persona.
4. Own Your Space
Every brand should be pushing to be a thought leadership path. When a newsworthy event that will impact on your industry: be ready to write about it. Your blog is your editorial space to educate your customers about how shifts in your space affect both them and you. Make sure that your content team has enough creativity and freedom to be reactive when they need to be.
5. Be Generous
Avoid the trap of using your content channels solely as a constant stream of CTAs and asks. Constantly challenge your team to find ways to offer knowledge, resources, and insights (and no, that doesn’t always mean a discount code) to your audience. Get creative and stretch yourself with a resource section that includes evergreen content like buying guides, product reviews, free intelligence, reports, case studies, and survey results.
Speaking of CTA’s, here’s mine. If you’re not sure where to start with content marketing, I am.