Marketers across all industries are tasked with a similar challenge: find and acquire customers at the lowest cost possible. Most businesses are prepared to throw the kitchen sink at their marketing strategy, trying everything from digital ads, email, social media, billboards, direct mailings, and more. After testing these tactics, content marketing often emerges as a viable tactic to drive leads and increase sales over time.
Content marketing involves the production of engaging blog posts, articles, guides, reports, infographics, and videos. The content complements the products that the company sells. Through the promotion of this content, companies can reach more people organically on a consistent basis. This can turn into an invaluable, organic channel for new business.
For content marketing to work effectively, marketers need to publish content frequently. This can be a challenge for marketing teams with limited people, money, and resources. In this post, we’ll show you how to scale your traffic and create a content marketing machine in four steps.
1. Select the Right Topics
The pressure is on when it comes to selecting your topic. If you write a perfectly-crafted blog post about the wrong topic, it won’t drive results for your business. Marketers need to ensure they are positioning their content in the best way so it intrigues and delights their prospects.
In order to understand what to write about, marketers should open the lines of communication with existing customers. This will help inform their content marketing strategy and provide inspiration for what their customers are actually seeking.
Some questions to ask include:
- What did you wish you knew about our product or its value before you purchased it?
- How has our product made your life easier?
- What questions do you still have after implementing our product into your business?
- What more would you like to know about the industry we’re in?
By going straight to your customers, you can gather insights that will guide your content development to ensure it resonates with your target audience.
2. Draft Enriching Content
Quite possibly the most important step of the process is creating the content itself. It doesn’t matter if it’s a video or a ten page guide. All of your content should begin with a creative brief. This brief should outline the intended target audience, your thesis, a few supporting facts, and a description of any design elements needed.
A creative brief helps keep the content focused on a singular topic. Additionally, this brief can be easily passed along to your writers, who will be responsible for drafting the asset. As they write, they can reference the brief as needed to ensure they stay on topic and aligned with your vision.
Is a creative brief the only thing your writers need? Absolutely not. Content marketing managers need to provide their writers with brand guidelines, access to their products, and any additional tools and resources that they can use. To accomplish this quickly, have your writers sign up for a password manager. With one, you can easily share logins and passwords for the tools you use. Now, your writers can get to work and craft the perfect piece of content for your readers.
3. Automate Editing, Optimization and Uploading
The goal of any content marketing program is to publish often to ensure you have a wide variety of content assets available for your prospects to enjoy. If you’re publishing 3-4 pieces of content each week, you don’t want to be the bottleneck in the process.
You’ll need to find ways to automate your editing and optimization to ensure your content moves from the writer to your website at an expedited pace. One way to accomplish this is to use a variety of web apps that can help you streamline your process. Some helpful apps include Grammarly for editing, Market Muse for SEO, and a trusted plagiarism checker to ensure that your content is original and not copied from another source.
Most tech-savvy content marketing managers take things one step further and automate the process to upload their content to their CMS. Wordable, a web app designed to instantly import Google Docs into WordPress, can save content marketers hundreds of hours. It enables marketers to upload Google Docs to their WordPress site in just one click. There’s no need to waste time by individually uploading your images or formatting your document again.
By integrating apps and technology, you can automate repetitive processes to ensure that you aren’t the one that’s slowing your content marketing machine down.
4. Prioritize Backlinking
SEO is another factor that can make or break your content marketing strategy. If your content isn’t optimized for search engines, your customers might not find it. One of the many signals Google takes into account when ranking content is backlinks.
Backlinks are the number of times a related site includes an external link to your piece of content. This signals to Google that the content you’ve created is valuable for readers, and can increase your chances of ranking higher on search.
Content marketers can’t just hit publish and hope the backlinks will come. They need to promote their content through owned channels and reach out to related blogs asking for a link. Manually completing this process at scale can be time-consuming, unsuccessful, and extremely difficult to say the least. Consider outsourcing this crucial step to an SEO agency to better utilize your time and get results.
Businesses are starting to realize the value of an effective content marketing program and are pressuring their marketers to deliver. Marketers are tasked to figure out a way to scale what’s working for their company in a way that is effective, resourceful, and ultimately makes sense for the business.
Achieving content marketing at scale can be tough. To accomplish this, marketers need to select the right topics, draft enriching content, automate their processes, and prioritize backlinks. Once they do those four steps, they will be on their way to acquiring customers and increasing revenue with a fully-functioning content marketing machine.