Many of you are already working with content planning, either formally or more sporadically. In this article, you’ll find tips for planning, content, set up and much more, so you can produce better results with content marketing in your business.
1. Planning, planning & planning
Good intentions aren’t worth much if you’re drowning in “business as usual”…so content planning can therefore be a good idea. For some, it makes more sense to make a stringent plan to follow to the letter, and for others, it’s better having something more flexible that can be adjusted as you go along. One thing is certain though; planning undoubtedly makes working with content easier and often also better. Remember, for example, to include various campaigns in the content plan, as we all as thinking about whether there are fixed holidays, deadlines and so on, that might be important for you or your target group.
If you don’t already have a calendar where you insert your content, you can perhaps find one here in Google Docs. There are already a number of templates that you can fill out, and either print or share with your colleagues in Google Docs.
Also remember that you can make use of the variety of scheduling tools to ensure that the content comes out at the scheduled times. This can also be a good opportunity to include holidays etc. (There should also be someone who answers clients over these periods and removes any scheduled updates if they are no longer relevant). You can, for example, schedule your updates on Facebook or Twitter with various tools, across the different social media platforms with social media management systems or tools, such as Buffer.
2. Utilize the possibilities
Not all content has to be original or produced yourselves. You can share articles, reports and so on, if you think that it gives value to the target group. So find out who shares quality content within your field, for example on Twitter, LinkedIn Pulse, various newsletters and the like, so you always have some good content in “the bank”.
There are also events and special occasions that can be used to your benefit. There is Valentine’s Day, dates for VAT reporting, anniversaries, the World Cup, The Olympics, award shows, conferences, law changes, policy proposals, and much much more.
3. Test, test & test
When we work with planning and sending out content, I can’t say it enough – it’s about testing. What do people want to read? What do they actually read? When is the best time to send?
Measure which types of content people can be “bothered” to engage with – what will or do they share, like, or comment on? What content entices readers to go to your website, or more importantly for some, which types of content will make a user convert?
We should naturally also test when we share content….Test when you achieve your best results from newsletters, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter etc. Unfortunately, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all rule. Our update on LinkedIn that reached the broadest group and achieved the best results was sent on a Friday afternoon during the summer holidays! This is a time I normally wouldn’t have bet my money on. In Facebook Insights (in the Posts window), you can see when your users are online. The picture on the right shows the results of a study from last summer.
4. Content for SEO
You should always consider SEO when you create content, both in terms of your desired positioning and use of words in articles. You can also, however, start from a different perspective. Start in Google Analytics, or a similar tool, and find out which posts or articles receive the most organic traffic from Google. Most websites and blogs have a handful of posts, or perhaps more, which over a longer period create organic traffic. Identify these articles and see whether they have a common theme.
5. Use visual elements
It is a good idea to find pictures, graphs or infographics you can use with your articles, blogs, tips and other content. Pictures can be used to present results or statistics and this means better diversification (these often attract a more diverse group) and therefore better visibility among users. So if you haven’t already tested your visual content, you might need to take a closer look at tools like infogr.am and create.visual.ly
And when we talk about visual content, it’s hard to ignore Instagram. Be inspired by following the biggest brands on Instagram. Victoria’s Secret has, at the time of writing, over 4 million followers, and Nike has 3.6 million. Although both companies have “obvious” visual content, a relatively “unsexy” B2B business can most certainly use the medium. See how General Electric uses Instagram here.
There’s no point in having made a fine plan for content, worked on the content, and in the whole process taking account of KPIs, positioning and SEO if no one sees what you have made…so I usually say that spreading the content is half the work.
There needs to be a plan for when content should be distributed in order to reach the right people. Within an office, you might know each other’s networks and therefore who you need to share content with in order to ensure good visibility.
As it has become more difficult to break through on media like Facebook, it has also become necessary to have a plan for when media should be invested in. This also applies to LinkedIn, where it is possible to sponsor an update aimed towards a carefully chosen audience. Many companies are willing to pay for visibility in order to reach certain industries, companies, titles and so on.