Regardless of where and how you interact with a business, content is always involved. This includes surfing their website, looking at their product packaging, or watching an ad on TV. Here is how important is it for entrepreneurs to make a solid content strategy for their business?
Therefore, it won’t be farfetched to say that content is the backbone of all marketing activities. In fact, as per CMI (Content Marketing Institute), 86 percent of B2C marketers believe that content strategy is vital for a business, while 91 percent of B2B marketers use content to target their customers.
However, there are still a lot of businesses that don’t have a solid content strategy in place. Optin Monster reports that 65 percent of businesses have trouble creating engaging content. Additionally, 19 percent of B2B firms don’t have a content strategy in place, to begin with.
While content marketing is important for businesses of all sizes, it is immensely crucial for startups and entrepreneurs.
What exactly is a content strategy?
First, let’s begin by understanding what content is. For a marketer, content refers to meaningful information regarding a business or niche that allows readers to accomplish a goal. Content can take various forms and can be delivered through multiple mediums.
The purpose of creating a content strategy is to ensure that the right customers get the right key message at the most crucial moments. These moments are known as touchpoints.
The content strategy revolves around translating the core business objectives of a brand into measurable marketing goals. Here, content is used as a way to achieve the mentioned goals.
For instance, let’s say you launch a business selling Plus Size Leather Jackets. Your business goal is to remove the stigma associated with being plus size. In turn, your marketing goal will be to promote a positive body image. Each of your content will be aligned with this goal.
You will then create an editorial calendar, write content, and publish it across various mediums to ensure that you best achieve your business and marketing goals. The strategy should also ideally incorporate the following elements:
- The KPIs of the different content published
- The segmented target audience of each type of content
- Alignment of content with brand voice and tone
- Documentation of the strategy to ensure streamlining of the process
Why startups need a solid content strategy?
It is particularly important for entrepreneurs to create a robust content strategy. Here is why.
- It simplifies content creation
According to Website Builder, 29 percent of startups end up failing due to monetary limitations. Therefore, creating a dedicated marketing team from the get-go can be quite hard. But, when you consider just how complicated content creation can be, this seems like a lose-lose situation.
Creating a content strategy helps in streamlining the content creation process, thereby making it much easier for a startup team to follow through with it.
For instance, once you have a clear content schedule in place, you can use solutions like Buffer to schedule posts in advance. This allows that brands don’t miss out on reaching optimum traffic merely because they are busy with handling other matters of business.
- Ensures Consistency
According to Forbes, consistency in content creation can help boost revenue by 33 percent! In a world where 45 percent of startups end up shutting down due to profitability, any entrepreneur can go a long way by improving the consistency of their content.
Creating a content strategy is the first step to ensuring consistency. During the process of strategy creation, brands come up with the key messages that they must reflect throughout their content. This means that every content they create will be connected and will feature a consistent brand voice.
Hence, by creating a solid strategy that features clarity about brand voice and messaging, you can avoid the pitfall of developing random, unconnected content. In other words, content strategy is important for satisfying the target audience’s expectations from your brand.
Take the example of Coca-Cola. Each of its campaigns is connected with the overall brand goal. One of its winning campaigns included “Share a Coke,” which is also linked to its key messaging of sharing happiness
- Helps in targeting the right audience at the right time
Content strategies are not developed overnight. You must research your target audience to create an ideal buyer persona. You must then figure out all potential touch-points during their buying journey and create different types of content targeted towards each touchpoint.
This research stage of content strategy is very crucial for entrepreneurs. This is because it allows them to truly understand their consumers’ needs, wants, and plights. The startup can then adapt its solution or online presence according to their research.
This helps a startup in making sure that their value proposition is aligned with consumers’ demand. And if it is, the strategy ensures that they are able to reach their target audience at the right time, via the right type of content.
Considering how important every sale is for startups, it is quite understandable why this step of the content strategy has the power to stabilize small businesses.
- Improves brand image
Venngage reports that while 95 percent of companies have proper brand guidelines, only 25 percent of them truly stick to them. For a startup, branding efforts matter a lot.
This is because proper branding ensures brand awareness and recognition – key factors for ensuring sales. After all, unless people know about your brand and are able to recognize it, how will they be tempted to purchase it?
Your content strategy plays a crucial role in creating and improving brand image. Whether it be the tone you use when conversing with your customers online or the type of posts you create, each of them helps build brand image.
Airbnb has an excellent content strategy in place. It leverages user-generated content to boost its credibility. It also highlights its community to showcase the impact it creates. There is no better example of this than the Airbnb community stories featured on its website.
How to create a winning content strategy?
Now that you realize the importance of developing a content strategy, the next step is to know just how to create a robust content strategy for your startup. Here are the steps you should take.
- Decide on your business goals: What is the main objective your startup wishes to accomplish?
- Translate it to marketing goals: How can your marketing efforts help in achieving this goal?
- Conduct target audience research: Who is your ideal buyer? What do they need?
- Develop a brand positioning and value proposition: How do you want people to perceive your brand? Why should they choose you? Make sure to align the answers with your business objectives.
- Create your big idea and key messages: What is the tagline of your brand? What is the core message you wish to relay to your consumers?
- Decide on content mediums and forms: Mediums can include social media, digital marketing, email marketing, billboards, activations, etc. Forms include videos, infographics, webinars, seminars, advertorials, etc.
- Develop a content calendar: Create your content in advance and decide when and how you will publish it.
- Monitor performance: Use analytics and tools to keep tabs on your campaigns’ performance and alter your message according to the results.
Verdict: Content Strategy is a Necessity
All in all, creating a content strategy is imperative for the success of any startup. Don’t underestimate its power. Instead, make sure you dedicate the required time and effort to creating the perfect strategy.
Make sure to follow through with it! At the end of the day, unless the plan is executed properly, nothing matters. Good luck!
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