Is your content strategy on track?
are you working on one? Or is it just a distant task on your to-do list?
… Why don’t you think about your priorities?
Brands and marketers with a documented content strategy outperform those without it.
How well are they ahead of their peers? Surprisingly, they are 414% more likely to report success.
This is a great motivation for executing the strategy.
One caveat: Whether you’re new to content strategy, modifying an existing strategy, or completely overhauling your content marketing, you need a solid framework you can rely on.
And if you need help setting up that framework’s building blocks, this guide will explain what you need to include.
What is a Content Strategy Framework?
The Content Strategy Framework is the plan that guides all your content marketing actions. Learn more about how to create, manage, publish, promote, and maintain content to meet your brand’s goals.
Documenting this framework creates a living reference point for executing your strategy. Just write it down in Google Docs, Sheets, or Notepad. It’s a plan you can come back to to guide all your content marketing actions.
By the way, the distinction is essential. Your content strategy is not static at all. Instead, it should evolve with your brand as you discover what works and what doesn’t. (That includes your goals.)
Finally, remember that strategy is meant to guide and repeat that process. You don’t just create one piece of content and finish it in one day.create dozens to hundreds A snippet of content using this framework I’m working with.
And at any given time, it will fall to its knees at several different stages. But with strategy, you’ll never get lost.
What elements should be included in a content strategy framework?
All content strategies should provide direction on key points. Here’s a quick breakdown.
- Set goals.
- Define your audience.
- Select a content platform.
- Select a topic and format for your content.
- Identify teams and roles.
- Set a posting schedule.
- Plan your promotion methods.
- Get the tools you need to run your content.
- Decide how you will track and measure your results.
- Set a budget.
Get the daily newsletter search marketers rely on.
How to Create a Content Strategy Framework: The 10 Building Blocks
Goal setting is one of the most important parts of creating a content strategy. Without goals, you can’t focus your efforts because there’s no destination to aim for in your content marketing.
According to CoSchedule, marketers who set goals are 377% more successful than those who don’t.
So ask yourself what you want to achieve with your content. What do you want your content to do? Here are some general goals to get you started:
- increase brand awareness: Increase your online visibility and become known in the industry.
- nurture your audience: Provide helpful content to educate your audience, build trust, and generate more leads.
- Drive more traffic: Bring more of your target audience to your virtual doorstep.
- Get more subscribers and leads: Encourage email signups and convert visitors into leads with great content.
When choosing your goals, don’t stop at this broad, vague level. Think about exactly what you want to achieve under that particular goal umbrella. Get a concrete number and use it.
For example, if my goal is to drive more traffic, my strategy would be: “Increase total website traffic by 20% in 6 months”
Once you’ve defined your goals, you can move on to defining your target audience.
At this stage, discover who needs the expertise and solutions your brand offers and who you need to talk to through that content. For that, you need to conduct an audience survey.
This part is essential to get it right. You need to have a deep understanding of your audience, including their interests and challenges. This makes your content resonate with your heart.
If you don’t fully understand your audience, your content topics won’t always resonate. And content that doesn’t resonate doesn’t produce results.
One of the best ways to get to know your audience is to interview them directly. To do this, you need to start with some assumptions about who needs the items you sell. Then, talking to prospects will tell you if those assumptions were correct.
One of my favorite questions to ask my potential audience is, “If you had a magic wand that could instantly solve one of your current problems with X, which one would you choose?”
Next: Where will you post your content?
You can maintain various channels online for publishing and distributing your content, but you must choose where to focus your efforts.
In other words, where do you want to focus to build your brand online? Which platform will be your home base on the web?
We always recommend focusing on your website first. Specifically, posting content to your blog. why?
Your website is property you own. Not a social media account. Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts are on rented land.
Also, you have little control over your visibility on social media. Your followers may or may not see all your posts. If you don’t post daily, your visibility will plummet further.
That’s why your website is such a powerful platform.
- You own the content you post there.
- Control the visibility of that content.
- Build your online authority with SEO and organic rankings.
- Other content posted on other platforms may point to your website.
- You have full control over the look and feel of your website, including the user experience.
Whatever platform you choose, document the platforms you want your content to grow on the most.
Now it’s time to talk about strategy content. Next he needs to clarify two things.
What topic areas will your content focus on?
To answer this question, rely on the intersection of your industry expertise/products you sell and what your audience wants. Your best topic areas relate to both.
For example, if you sell running shoes, don’t just write about running shoes. Write about relevant topics your audience is interested in, such as training, knee health, or running events. However, I probably won’t write about non-running sports or hobbies like soccer, yoga, or tennis.
What type and format of content do you publish?
Review your resources and the types of content your audience likes. Smaller brands may not have the means to create sophisticated and highly produced video content. However, there are ways to create quality blogs on a regular basis. Most brands start there.
Who is responsible for each aspect of content marketing?
With this in mind, know that your content should not be an “when you have time” activity.
Working requires dedication. I need someone who can give my full attention. This means investing in help (or seeking buy-in to hire additional experts) as soon as possible.
Here are the most essential roles you should fill when setting up your content team (one person can fill multiple roles, depending on your resources):
- content writer/creator: At a basic level, you should be comfortable creating most forms of content: blogs, ebooks, whitepapers, web pages, social media posts, and more. Also, if you want to invest in videos and infographics, you need someone with those skill sets.
- content manager: Who is responsible for managing blog posts, including formatting, scheduling, and publishing?
- social media manager: Who is responsible for posting to social media and interacting with your audience?
- Content/SEO Strategist: Who does keyword research and blog topic research? Who thinks about content topics? Who tracks metrics and measures results?
Yes, content marketing requires a content calendar. But before setting up your content, you need to know your strategy for scheduling and posting your content.
Remember: Consistency is key – not necessarily method many But whether your audience can trust your posts and whether they are always of high quality.
- How often do you post content on your main platform?
- How often do you post content to secondary platforms?
- How often do you promote your content on social media?
- When is the best time to post content for your audience?
Please base your answers on research and brand resources. What are your content team’s capabilities? What outputs can your business support?
With all these questions answered, setting up a content calendar is easy.
Next, choose how you want to promote your content.
Promotion is a way to draw attention to your content. Especially if your audience is not yet established.
However, you don’t have to spend a lot of money on promotions. It’s as easy as cross-posting a link to your new blog you just published on social media. It’s as easy as sending an email to your subscribers informing them of your new blog.
If you don’t already have an email subscriber list, we recommend choosing that as your primary content marketing goal and promoting your posts on social in the meantime.
Most steps in your content strategy will require at least one tool to make the process easier and faster. Additionally, some tools offer data you can never skip if you’re looking to compete in search engine rankings.
Required tools are:
- Keyword research or SEO tools (Semrush, Ahrefs, KWFinder by Mangools, etc.)
- Web analytics tools (such as Google Analytics)
- Content management system (WordPress, Drupal, Joomla, etc.)
- Content calendars (Airtable, Trello, CoSchedule, Google or Excel spreadsheets, etc.)
Tools that are nice to have are:
- Editing software (such as Grammarly).
- SEO checker (like Yoast).
- Conversion rate optimization (CRO) tools such as Hotjar.
- Image editing tools (Canva, Photoshop, etc.).
9. Progress tracking
As you work toward your content marketing goals, you should also track your progress.
Document how you plan to do that in your content strategy. Decision:
- of key performance indicators (KPI) can be attached to a goalFor example, if one of my goals is to build brand authority and reputation, I can track my keyword rankings on Google over time to show how my online authority is growing. .
- Tools needed to track these KPIsFor example, I need an SEO tool to track my website’s Google ranking.
- How often you check inCheck monthly metrics? Quarterly? Keep in mind that content marketing results tend to be slow but steady.
Last but not least, adjust your content marketing budget. Based on your strategy, how much will it cost to execute? Consider the people, tools, and processes you must invest in to make it happen.
Remember to weigh your costs against your resources and fine-tune your strategy as needed to meet your budget constraints. Remember: Great content helps your brand grow. And as your brand grows, your investment in content is likely to increase as well.
A content strategy framework leads to solid content marketing
For content marketing to work, you need a content strategy framework.
Fortunately, you are already on track.
Use this framework to develop your brand’s plan for content success, but remember that strategy is not static. Instead, think of it as a living document that you use every day to stay focused, stay on track, and reach your goals.
The opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land. Staff authors are listed here.