A Content Marketing Manifesto

Content Marketing is a powerful tool, and it’s set to soar. 

At Byte9 we’ve developed seven steps to optimise your strategy.

1. Create Quality Written Content

Quality content is the foundation of any campaign. Content marketing is increasingly regarded as invaluable in targeting traffic, generating prospects and actionable business intelligence, and boosting conversion.

You must know your audience. Content that demonstrates expert and relates to its demographic will have a far higher level of audience engagement.

Secondly, you must determine actionable information about what the customer wants to receive and how they want to receive it. Sales and marketing teams can act upon this.

2. Keyword Analysis and Editorial Assistance Drive Search

Content drives marketing. However, content and SEO are not the same thing. Every page of original text adds search engine ranking page strength, therefore increasing the likelihood that your page ranking will be higher, given the quality of the content and other websites propensity to ‘link’ to it.

Content quality and links from authority sites are key determinants of search position. The primary step in effective SEO is to decide on keywords that relate to the kind of copy you want to produce, the subjects they cover any other relevant corresponding topics that reflects the language being used by your target audience to search for it (primarily via Google).

It is essential to research and validate the keywords using 3 party and in-house tools and methodology. Establishing search volumes and identifying niche opportunities within topic areas is the goal. Tools like the Google Keyword tools, Google Trends and Ubersuggest will help.

3. Leverage the Crowd

Creating great content requires skill, particularly with specialist editorial. Many companies allocate too little budget to content creation and instead focus on advertising, pay per click and other mediums to generate revenue, which can create comparatively expensive ‘quick wins’, but do not build long-term cumulative value.

If you do not have the in-house editorial capacity then a content led marketing campaign can be achieved by outsourcing.

This can prove cost and time effective and it allows you to connect the right writer with the right subject. Community engagement can also generate ‘crowd sourced’ content (expert comment, interviews, webinars etc.).

4. Measurement and Analytics = Success

We at Byte9 advocate having measures in place before any content marketing activity is undertaken, so that return on investment can be demonstrated from the outset.

Editorial assistance tools can help authors to understand the value of content using factors like mark-up and content style, keyword density and link equity. This will enable them to author content that will be more visible and effective in driving conversion.

This report found that the top three metrics publishers used to measure performance were: unique visitors (88%), Page views per visitor (76%) and Page views (71%).

We might add that site conversion (sales, subscription or newsletter registration conversion etc.) was measured to understand which type of content attracts the highest converting prospects.

Monitoring traffic can identify areas of interest of customers and also indicate content that is less appealing. Analytics should form the basis of any content marketing strategy.

5. Checklist & Strategy

A great primer is available here, but your first step should be preparation.

Define goals, identify your audience and create a structured editorial calendar.

Fill it with targeted content that benefits readers, then publish and promote.

6. Right Content, Right Device, Right Time

Responsive Design allows for the delivery of content to different device screen sizes in an optimised way; ‘adaptive content’ can also be achieved by marking up appropriate content for the device within the CMS. Typically, an improved user experience will result in increased conversion.

Integrated and automated e-mail broadcast tools (such as Mail Chimp) use RSS conditional formatting allow for user specific content personalisation.

7. Leveraging Community and Social Channels

Once you have quality content, your customers need to engage with it.

Blogger Outreach can help. This allows you to engage with the wider blogging community plus trade, press, PR and specialist writers.

Its value is in driving traffic back to your site, developing your online presence through association with authority writers on certain topics and tapping into a highly engaged group of readers who are looking for quality content and brands to align with.

Social Media engagament is unlikely to qualify as a sole ‘strategy’ in your content marketing mix, but ask if your content is relevant and your audience familiar with social media channels. Do you possess the resources to maintain it as a communication channel, and what would you consider as a success?