It’s amazing to think of the smorgasbord of options in which content creators can provide what content consumers truly love. There’s absolutely a platform for everyone. And if I were to think of a Big 3 in types of content, I’d have to name video for the visual lover, podcasting for the audio lover, and […]
Content Marketing is a fancy word for promoting a product or service using web content–i.e. writing. Unlike, say, Influencer Marketing, which uses celebrities and other influencers to market a product, content marketing is exactly the sort of thing that we, writers, excel at. I realized how big a part in marketing it has become when […]
This helps to build trust between a brand and its audience, creating customer loyalty and increasing the likelihood that a lead will make a purchase.
It’s also important to point out that content marketing isn’t meant to involve sales in any way. Instead, it’s designed to create a rapport with the audience, establishing the brand as a trusted thought-leader in their industry.
To put it simply, a content marketing strategy helps you identify the “why” behind your content.
For a content marketing strategy to be effective, you need to know who you plan on helping and how you will help them with the content you’ll create in the future.
In other words, the beginning of any good strategy involves identifying your target audience, identifying problems and issues they face, and then, identifying what types of content you should create to provide your audience with valuable solutions to their problems.
For example, if you owned a business that sold natural skincare products, your target audience might be women between the age of 25 and 35.
One problem or pain point this audience might have is that they are trying to avoid man-made chemicals in their skincare products.
Therefore, you might create content that explains the types of chemicals found in skincare products. This would help establish your brand as a trusted expert on the topic. And allow your audience to view your natural products as a solution to their problem.
Essentially, the main idea behind a content plan or strategy is to identify problems and create content that solves them.
Although similar to a content marketing strategy, content planning is a little bit different.
Typically, a content plan is more tactical than a content marketing strategy and documents the exact methods that you will use to execute it.
However, it’s important to keep in mind that your brand needs a content marketing strategy before you create your content plan.
While your strategy should document buyer personas and their journey, your content plan should include more specific details such as your content cluster topics, the types of content you plan on creating, how and where you’ll share your content, and any specific calls-to-action you want your content to include.
Buyer Personas in Content Marketing
Buyer personas are an age-old marketing technique where a fictional character is created to represent a member of a brand’s potential audience.
Digital marketers use these fictional personas, as well as market segmentation, to identify potential customers, their issues, and their purchasing habits to create content specific to them.
As a business, you need to personalize your sales process according to your buyer’s personas, as well as their journey.
A buyer’s journey consists of three steps:
The awareness stage, which is when the buyer realizes they have an issue.
The consideration stage, when the buyer knows they have a problem and are searching for a solution.
The decision stage, which is when the buyer chooses a solution by making a purchase or engaging with a business in some way.
Without an intimate understanding of your potential buyers, it’s impossible to create content that addresses their issues. Consider asking the following questions to help you discover your buyer’s journey:
How would a buyer describe their challenges?
How do your buyers learn about their problems and challenges?
What happens if your buyers do not take any action?
What are some common misconceptions your buyers have about their challenges?
How do your buyers address their problems?
What categories of issues/problems do your buyers investigate?
How do they decide which categories are right for them?
Answering these questions will provide you with the robust foundation of your buyer’s journey.
There are many different ways that brands can use content to interact with their audience. However, blogging has become one of the most effective types of content because businesses can use blog posts to directly address their audience’s problems.
And of course, the most important way to promote your blog posts and website content is by using social media.
As we’ve already mentioned, one of the biggest mistakes a brand can make is not publishing enough content or not creating valuable content that keeps their readers interested and engaged with the brand.
In 2014, I’d had enough of working jobs I had no passion for. So I decided to look into other types of work I might be interested in.
I searched online and read countless articles on “how to make money from home” or “how to earn your first million online”.
But in my eyes, all of them translated into “you must buy our product or course, and we won’t guarantee you’ll make any money”.
At the time, I was fascinated with traveling the world and punk rock music was something that I’d grown up listening to.
So I came up with the idea to start my own travel blog, call it The Punk Rock Hobo, and pursue work as a freelance copywriter, which would hopefully allow me to travel the world.
Below you’ll find a more detailed case study of The Punk Rock Hobo and what I’ve been able to learn from it.
As I’ve said, I started out with virtually no experience working with WordPress or any other type of Content Management System. Therefore, my goals and objectives for The Punk Rock Hobo were rather simple:
Build a functioning website
So with these four goals as my main campaign objectives, I developed a very (extra very) simple strategy to achieve them.
The first phase of my strategy, as should be the first step in any online marketing strategy, was to do research and to learn as much as possible about developing websites and generating an income from them.
I also did research into how I would drive traffic to my website and learnt that the easiest ways to earn money from a blog or website were either by selling ad space and through affiliate marketing.
So with that in mind, I learned how to implement Google Adsense onto my site and signed up for a few affiliate programs, mainly Amazon’s.
To drive traffic, my plan was to gain as many followers as I could on my social media accounts and then use these platforms to spread my content across the web, in turn, driving traffic to my website.
With this very basic strategy, I’m proud to say that I was able to achieve my very basic goals, all within one year from when I started looking into things.
I built my first website using WordPress.
I managed to gain more than 5,000 Twitter followers and had over 300 active followers on WordPress.
I was able to drive small, yet very real amounts of traffic to my site.
I earned a massive $14.70 with Google Adsense.
I made my first sale via Amazon’s affiliate program and earned something like $1.41 when somebody bought a pair of hiking pants that I’d promoted on my blog.
In conclusion, my adventure with The Punk Rock Hobo has taught me a lot about building and running websites.
I learned how to build and develop websites using WordPress.
I learned how to integrate a variety of plugins, helping me track my site’s metrics, allowing me to set benchmarks, and learn more about my audience.
I learned how to generate revenue using Google Adsense.
I learned many tactics and strategies that can be used to run successful affiliate marketing campaigns.
I also learned many things that should never be done when building and developing websites.
The culmination of this knowledge and experience has since lead me to pursue a full-time career as a freelance copywriter and today, I’m proud to say that I’m the founder and voice behind The Hobo Marketing Company.
We know the online world can be harsh sometimes, but by sharing our stories and helping each other, we can build a better digital tomorrow!
We’d love to hear your story on how you first got into digital marketing. Drop us a line in the comments section below or send us a message via our Contact Page.