Content Marketing is the buzzword in Internet Marketing right now!
After the most recent round of Google updates, many experts are even going as far as to say that Content Marketing has completely replaced Search Engine Optimization for ranking in Google and other search engines.
But how do you actually go about creating the content for your site or your clients?
Over the years I have created content for more than 30 different products on a variety of topics from dating to photography. Today I’m going to share with you my 5-step process for creating a content marketing plan that works.
I’ll use an example business to help illustrate each of these steps, in this case I’ll use a dog training business that focuses on Huskies since I own a very badly behaved one named Raylan.
Let’s get started:
1. Know your subject
You are not going to be able to create interesting or relevant content if you don’t know what you’re talking about.
A lot of other marketers will recommend that you just write generic articles stuffed full of keywords, but Google and other search engines are cracking down on that fast! That means that in order for your content to rank high it has to be useful to the user.
Spend 2-4 hours researching your content ideas, before you do anything else. You’d be surprised how many content marketers skip this step even when they are being paid!
So we’ll assume since I’m not an expert on Huskies I’ll need to do some research for my Husky business. I’d start by going on Amazon and finding the best reviewed books on Huskies and Husky training.
I like to over research so I often spend 10+ hours learning before even starting to create content.
I’d read both of these books spend another 1-2 hours checking out competitor’s Husky training pages, and checking Quora and other forums for Husky questions.
Total time: 5-10 hours if you know nothing, less if you’re an expert already.
2. Know your audience
You should have an idea of exactly who you are creating this content for and what questions they have. If you don’t know this already, you need to survey and study your list and past customers.
For my fictional Husky training business I am targeting Husky owners in Southern California, where it’s very hot and owners need special instructions to care for their dogs.
Let’s say I have a small 300 person list. I’d narrow down the most consistently complaints. I'll use find the most common 4-5 options or problems they're facing, then use Survey Monkey to see their biggest problem.
I’d also take the time to call 10-20 survey respondents and talk to them about the biggest problem they have owning a Husky in Southern California.
Total Time: 2-3 hours depending on if you call respondents or not
3. Brainstorm with structure
Now it’s time to figure out what your content is going to be about and what channels of distribution you are going to use.
I like to create a list of 10-20 possible content ideas based on the most consistently complained about problem and then narrow down to the best ones.
You also need to decide if you’re going to create articles, videos, podcasts, or any of the million other ways to distribute content. I’m going to create a video that I will share on social media, as well as mail to the members of my list.
I like the idea of creating a “mistakes” video where I tell people the 7 most common mistakes Husky owners make in Southern California, so we’ll go with that.
Total Time: 1 hour
4. Create a first draft
Now it’s time to create a first draft. Research has shown the most effective videos give you a big idea you can agree and 1 specific tactic to implement.
So in our Husky example, we’d create a video script on the 7 mistakes Husky owners make in San Diego (my home city). I want the video to have 1 big idea so we’re going to talk about how despite common wisdom Huskies are not outdoor dogs.
The big idea is that you have to keep your husky inside in the air conditioning, so they don’t overheat and get health problems.
Our tactic is going to be a specific way to find out if the dog is overheated or not, that I will demonstrate on my Husky to show everyone I know what I’m talking about.
We’ll create a script where we introduce the big idea first then go through the mistakes before ending with the tactic for immediate implementation.
Each page of script works out to approximately 3 minutes of video depending on speaking speed so I’m aiming for around 3 pages.
Total Time: 2 hours
5. Add Keywords
Now once we’ve created a first draft of our content, in this case a script for our video, we’re going to add in all our marketing stuff from keywords to meta-tags and everything in between.
We do this last so that we can make sure that the key words fit into the content, without being forced.
In this case we’d want to try to work as many keywords and phrases into the first 30 seconds or so which we know is about how long it takes YouTube to count a view.
Total Time: 1 hour
Once you have your keywords and tags added to your script, you are ready to record. I like to record a couple different takes then edit based on that but you can also create an amazing finished piece of content without editing.
There you've it. Now go ahead and create some amazing content. What do you think about this post?
About The Author – Jon Lee is a Full Stack Marketer, who specializes in helping small businesses grow to 7 figures. He also blogs about career development and hosts the A Player Podcast where he interviews “A Players” from various fields as diverse as cage fighting and neurobiology find out more at www.Aplayerpodcast.com