We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: Content marketing isn’t about creating content. It is about creating the to the right type of content: content that grabs attention, connects with people and keeps them coming back for more. To be successful, you need to deliver quality content consistently and give people what they need at every stage of the customer journey. In short, you need to produce the right content marketing mix. But how do you know what it is? Luckily you’ve come to the right place.
Good content marketing = good content strategy
As much as we want there to be just one formula for the right marketing mix, it really depends on the needs of a specific brand. The problem is, many brands don’t have a solid content marketing plan, or even goals, and therefore struggle to create truly effective content.
This is evident in the Content Marketing Institute’s B2B content marketing 2021: benchmark report, budgets and trends, where marketers cited the top two challenges that hindered their success:
- Content creation challenges
- Strategic challenges
Without the right strategy, creating the right content is incredibly difficult. Therefore, we take a strategy-driven approach to create the right mix of content.
How to organize the right marketing mix
The steps we’ve outlined here will help you build an editorial plan to reach the right audience across all channels and avoid some of the common pitfalls in content creation. Naturally, the ideas you come up with will be unique to your brand, but following these steps will ensure that you create a comprehensive editorial calendar from the start.
1) Understand the content your audience needs at every stage of the customer journey.
Look, a longtime brand loyalist doesn’t need to hear the same message as someone who’s never met your brand before. Take a look at your entire content operation and make sure you engage with customers all along the journey: awareness, consideration, analysis, buy, and loyalty. For example, you can devote all of your energy to outreach content when you should be creating a little more thoughtful or analytical content. Look for gaps in the content of your course and brainstorm ideas to fill them.
2) Experiment with different formats.
The world of marketing is constantly changing. Trends change, distribution platforms change and consumer tastes change. This is especially true when it comes to content formats. You probably know firsthand that just because a content type was popular a few years ago doesn’t mean it will be popular forever (hey, BuzzFeed quizzes!). If you want to be successful in content marketing, you need to get the right message out through the right package.
There are many formats that can help you engage your audience, from infographics and eBooks to motion graphics and videos. As you brainstorm your ideas, think about the most effective way to present them. (This is especially important depending on the distribution channels you use. Things like video are better for some platforms than others.)
This is by no means an exhaustive list, and some formats may fit well into other stages, but here’s a general example of how different formats can help you connect at different stages of the journey. client:
- Consciousness: Infographics, white papers, e-books
- Consideration: Blog posts, social media posts, online posts
- To analyse: Webinars, demos, how-to videos
- To buy: Case studies, testimonials, free trials
- Loyalty: Newsletters, special offers, follow-up consultations
3) Choose a sustainable publication rate.
To publish the right content marketing mix, you need to serve the right content regularly. This is where editorial planning, resource management and project coordination come in. The keys to achieve this:
- Publication frequency: This is where many brands get tripped up. If you over-plan the content but are not sufficiently supported in creating that content, your presence in the post will be inconsistent. It’s best to start with a sustainable cadence and then build from there. Where would be the perfect place to post on your blog? Bulletin? Social media? What types of posts do people expect to see regularly, semi-regularly, and fair once in a while? This should inform your marketing mix.
- Planning: According to the CMI B2B report, 30% of marketers don’t even use an editorial calendar. The more organized you are, the easier it will be to consistently post content, establish a presence, and cultivate the right audience.
4) Establish a production process to maximize the efficiency of content creation.
You can have a large factory to create a documentary series, personalized white papers, or a comprehensive how-to guide for your department. But if you don’t have the time, funds, or human resources to produce it, it has no place in your marketing mix. If you want to create great content, you have three options:
- Internally: To do this, you need to develop a solid infrastructure and process for creating content, regardless of the medium. Every member of your team should have the knowledge and resources to produce this type of content.
- Independent: They are often easy to integrate, but they lack the expertise and the ability to scale.
- Agency: Successful agencies have teams of experts to produce a wide range of content. They are especially useful if you are looking to create and execute a great content strategy.
5) Measure and study what worked.
Guesswork has no place in content marketing. Knowing your goal and choosing the metrics to measure your success is crucial. As many brands focus on delivering more and more content, understanding what content is worth showing is much more important.
For example, for our own marketing, we’ve invested weeks of work into interactive content that is beautiful and comprehensive but less successful than our simple template toolkits. If we weren’t taking an analytical look at the results, or if we were too stubborn to admit that it didn’t resonate as we hoped, we would continue to devote time, energy and resources to projects. that don’t give us the return on investment we want. Instead, we’ve chosen to work smarter, not harder on the content we create.
Point: Find out how to choose the right metrics for your content strategy to effectively track your success, and set up regular autopsies to review the content you’ve created. Ask yourself:
- Which pieces of content have been most successful?
- What platforms did they live on and where were they promoted?
- On what day and at what time were they published?
- What made them work?
- What can you learn from this?
Once you start deconstructing what works, it will be easier to come up with your best ideas.
Always prioritize strategy
Finding the perfect content marketing mix is both an art and a science. Ultimately, it takes both a critical mind and courage to try something new. If you’re not sure what your next move should be, focus on the basics:
- What are your goals?
- What does your audience need?
- What content would best provide what they need?