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Getting started with a content strategy

We’ve spent years being told that classic phrase “Content is King”. But what exactly does this mean, why does content always reign supreme and why should we even bother with a content strategy?

As we embark on our own content strategy journey here at Hart Square, those are just some of the questions we’ve begun to tackle. As we’ve found, getting started can seem daunting, so we’re sharing some of the initial insights we’ve gathered to help you get started with your own content strategy.

What is a content strategy?

Content marketing focuses on the audience. Its essence is in attracting the audience to you. It is the belief that when you deliver consistent valuable information and guidance to your audience, they will in turn engage and interact with you.

This begins with getting the right valuable content to the right audience at the right time. Consistent, quality content builds a relationship with your audience, it builds trust, it increases brand awareness and ultimately encourages your audience to come to you, knowing it will be worth their time.

What are our goals?

It’s important at the beginning of any new project or task, to ask yourself what do you want to achieve from this? When creating a content strategy, it’s no different.

What are your goals and KPI’s? Do you want to grow your audience, increase your engagement scores, build brand awareness or perhaps you want to achieve it all? Whatever your goals are, setting them out clearly at the beginning of the process will keep you focused, hold you accountable and be your guide throughout.

Who are our audience and what problems are we solving for them?

As we mentioned at the top, a content strategy is all about attracting an audience to engage with you. So, it’s essential you know who your audience are, or equally who you want your audience to be. To achieve this you need to discover their needs and understand what would be of value to them. The answer to these questions will unlock the key to knowing the content you need to begin creating.

What content formats do we want to produce?

There’s such a huge array of content formats, from blogs, articles, infographics, videos – it may be hard to know where to begin. But let your audience guide you. Finding out what content forms they are consuming and engaging with most will direct you on the route you should follow. Consider also how you can re-purpose one content item into a variety of formats.

What channels do we want to publish on?

Unfortunately, it’s not always as simple as “build it and they will come”. It’s important to explore a variety of channels to help understand which could work best for your content formats. Perhaps your video content will work best on your YouTube channel or maybe social media, but are your audience there too? It’s important to remember that your audience will not necessarily be on every channel.

How will we manage content creation and publication?

As I mentioned at the beginning of this article, consistency is key to creating a successful content strategy. To ensure you can consistently provide value to your audience, it is vital you can keep your content organised.

Create a space where you can store all your valuable content items and organise them in a way that makes sense to you. Then build out your content calendar and begin scheduling in when and where your content will be published.

How will we recognise success?

Finally then you need to be able to monitor your performance, and be ready to tune your approach at all levels. You can’t expect to get this right first time, and even if you did you will need to keep adapting to an ever-changing environment. Having said that, it’s important to understand that a content strategy takes time and patience to succeed, so agree your metrics, set your benchmarks and give yourself time to see the impact your content strategy has on your goals.

We’re in the early stages of our content strategy delivery, and will share more of our journey as it develops. Hopefully the insights here will help you build and execute your own strategy. Get in touch if you’d like to find out more.