We've had many conversations about content marketing over the last few years. Brands know they need to engage customers and prospects, but they often jump into the tactics without understanding how to think strategically about it. Because of the tremendous amount of effort it takes to create strong, engaging content, all of the energy goes into activities like calendars, software platforms and the actual creation of the content. The problem with that approach is this:

Your content marketing strategy should be an audience strategy.

You are building audiences that convert from prospects to customers and from customers to loyal advocates. Everything you think about in the realm of content from strategy goals to execution to measurement must be seen through the lens of the audiences you are developing.

Here are the most common mistakes made when brands start a content strategy.

  • No goals or KPIs that reflect audience-building activities
  • No content distribution plan outside of your own website
  • No SEO structure for the content or website
  • No logical, segmented path from content asset to conversion to capture
  • No future goal-centric communication with audience segments
  • No identification, training and sustainability of the resources who will create content
  • No ability for a website to support conversions and capture through landing pages
  • No CRM platform or plan for housing audience data securely and in a useful manner
  • No goals, expectations or training of salesforce on CRM
  • No plan or platform to support marketing automation
  • Content that is not focused enough to build or engage an audience or segment

Think Audiences from the Start

It may feel like shifting our focus to audiences makes content marketing even more daunting, but it should streamline and simplify it. Once you have identified the audiences to build, and the goals and KPIs for each one, an organizational structure and focus will follow.

This strategy also brings other sales and marketing efforts in line with content development. Paid media, public relations, sales materials and the sales process now share the common goal of developing the audiences that grow your business.

If you want to learn more about a proven audience-building process, contact Paulsen President Sara Steever at sara.steever@paulsen.agency.