There are many, many types of content you can produce to the point where it can be overwhelming. How can you make sure that you’re being as efficient as possible?

Your content marketing strategy should be able to answer the following 5 W’s:

1. Who?

Who are you presenting to? Who is your target audience?

Who are the types of people you want to attract to your content and business? Refer to my last blog post about defining your target audience.

2. What?

What content will you present to them?

First of all, let go of the dream that you will have a completely perfect content marketing strategy. The reality is, it’s a much better idea to focus your energy on many small, low-risk pieces instead of spending time planning something like a grand ebook that no one will end up reading.

Marketing author C.C. Chapman explains that content marketing is like a campfire.

  1. First, you need small twigs to get the fire going. In other words, you need small pieces of content that are easy to produce like Tweets or Facebook posts that will arouse interest in your customers.
  2. To keep burning the fire burning, add medium pieces of “wood” like blog posts or photo essays.
  3. Finally, you can add large pieces like an ebook, or even a full-on event.

Just because you’re finished building your campfire, it doesn’t mean you can stop creating content. Keep the fire going forever!

3. Where?

Where will you present the content to them? (Facebook? Email newsletters? YouTube?)

Where does your target audience get their information from? Is it worth creating a video if your audience has no interest in YouTube? Present content where you think your target audience is most likely to see it.

4. When?

When will you present the content to them?

An important tool for tracking when you will publish your content is an editorial calendar. Many people like to use an Excel spreadsheet or Google Doc. It can be as simple as complex as you want, but at the very baseline, you’ll want something that looks like this:

To keep your audience constantly engaged, publish content across different platforms on a consistent basis.

5. Why?

Why will your target audience be attracted to your content?

Hopefully, you should be able to answer this one on your own. If you can’t, then it’s probably a good sign that maybe your content doesn’t really serve a purpose, and you can spend your time creating something more useful.

Bonus: How?

How will you evaluate that your content is successful?

It’s much easier to set and track quantitative goals like “increase number of followers to 1,500” than qualitative ones like “increase brand awareness.” Regardless, It’s important to set goals for your content, otherwise, you’ll never know how to improve.

Content marketing shouldn’t be a drag – try to find the sweet spot between what your audience will find useful/interesting, and what’s fun for you to create. It will show if your heart isn’t in your content.

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