We know the importance of a strong PR strategy, but just how important is content marketing strategy?
Content strategy is an integral part of any marketing plan, with content creation being a top priority for 80% of marketers. When executed effectively, content is a powerful tool that can drive traffic, increase engagement and raise brand awareness. It’s an effective, affordable way to establish your brand as an industry leader and build loyalty and trust with your core audience.
However, content isn’t just something your business should churn out. For your content to reach the right audience and help achieve your business goals – whether it’s a blog, a whitepaper, a company newsletter, email marketing, social media posts or video content – it needs to be part of a wider plan. Well researched, SEO optimized content will continue to generate engagement while you sleep – but only if you have a solid content strategy under your belt.
What is content strategy?
B2B content strategy is the planning, creation and delivery of valuable, usable content to help achieve your business goals. A solid content strategy serves as a roadmap for your future content; it is a tool to track progress, identify new opportunities and fuel the creation of meaningful content that attracts the right target customers. Unsurprisingly, 78% of brands that were successful with content last year had a documented content marketing strategy – in other words, it pays to have a plan.
Whether you’re new to content marketing or you want to refresh your strategy, here are five phases every B2B content strategist should consider when creating a bulletproof content framework.
Phase one: brand tone of voice
Every successful brand has a unique and distinctive tone of voice – and it’s the first place to start when developing an effective content strategy.
Brand voice is the personality your brand lives across all its communications. It is the very essence of your business; it should embody your company values and express brand personality while delivering a consistent message that resonates with your audience.
Whether your brand voice is playful, authoritative, conversational or formal, all content should be written in this style, each word bursting with your unique brand personality.
The very first step towards nailing down brand voice is creating a Tone of Voice document, which can be referred back to by anyone writing on behalf of your brand.
Phase two: content objectives and goals
Without clear goals and a well-defined strategy, content can just be noise, easily lost in the never-ending pages of Google. The content you produce should be action-oriented; each piece of content is a building block for the wider strategy, working towards achieving your big brand goals.
Whether you want to rank higher for a specific keyword, increase your visibility on Google or simply educate your audience, all content you produce should be purpose-driven, with a clear end goal.
Consider the following questions:
- What does my business want to accomplish in the next six months?
- How can content help achieve these goals?
- What do I want my content to do?
The top three goals marketers achieve through successful content marketing are generating brand awareness, building credibility and trust, and educating audiences.
Phase three: target audience (and pain points!)
A content strategy isn’t just about what your brand can gain; it’s about what you can give your customers too.
Not every piece of content will convert (and nor should it) – some of your most valuable content will be purely educational, building a bridge of trust between you and your customers. Remember, the customers’ goal is to find answers, not to find you.
For your content to reach the right people, you first need to know who your audience is. A solid digital content strategy addresses a list of customer personas, detailing demographic factors (such as age, gender and job role) and the challenges your business can solve for them.
Content should provide readers with practical, insightful information, placing you as a reliable and trusted expert in your field.
Phase four: search engine optimisation (SEO)
One of the most powerful content results is organic growth – but there’s no such thing as effective organic growth without SEO. SEO is the backbone of successful content; when appropriately implemented, it can lead to higher-ranking web pages, increase organic discovery, generate quality leads and create a trustworthy web experience for customers.
With 61% of B2B marketers stating that SEO and organic traffic generates more leads than any other marketing initiative, it’s no surprise that SEO is a core element of an effective content strategy framework. Ensuring all content is effectively optimized should be a top priority when defining your plan.
It’s important to note that SEO moves fast; Google changes its search algorithm hundreds of times a year. What worked well a year ago may be out of date today, so it’s crucial to refresh your SEO content strategy regularly and stay ahead. That’s why working with an external agency to produce your blogs, whitepapers and company newsletters can often pay dividends because any agency at the top of its game is continually updating SEO reports for their clients. Every piece of content Abode creates is SEO charged as standard.
Phase five: content calendar
Finally, all content should be regular and consistent. Consistency helps to build trust, establish authority and strengthen brand reputation.
Whether you plan to publish a blog post every week or produce a whitepaper every month, it’s crucial to adhere to a schedule. Not only does a content calendar keep you organized, but it provides visibility across all departments, is an excellent source for brainstorming and can help you keep track of what’s performing.
Armed with these five core elements, you’re already on your way to creating an effective B2B content strategy that delivers results. However, not every business has the time or resources to produce regular, consistent, SEO-powered content – that’s where we come in.
Abode Worldwide’s Head of Content, Helen Wedgewood, explains that “our clients are requiring not only more content but different types of content to actively drive their businesses forward, generate initial sales conversations and ultimately convert customers. Content has always been a key part of any B2B marketing strategy and our secret sauce is that we have expert hospitality industry knowledge and sharp data insight to feed into the short and long-form pieces of content we create. Couple this with a well researched SEO plan and Abode clients benefit from hard-working content building awareness and showing not telling their customers why their brand is the best fit.”
About Abode Worldwide Content Team
At Abode Worldwide, we’re proud to have a team of expert content writers and strategists on hand to help you achieve your business goals. As specialists in our short-term rental, property technology and hotel technology sectors, our team specializes in creating engaging, topical SEO content to connect brands with their audience.