As a small business owner, you might be wondering, Where do I even begin? when considering a content marketing strategy. Material marketing is a great method to save money on advertising, and you presumably already know you should be using it. However, you may be wondering how to get your content out there.
The good news is that content marketing is simpler than it appears. Making a content marketing strategy for a small company usually just entails talking about your offerings in greater detail across various online platforms.
There’s a good chance you’re already familiar with social media and image-sharing apps like Facebook and Instagram. Planning out what will be shared, how it will be shared, and when it will be shared is all that content marketing entails.
Overview of Content Marketing
When you target a specific demographic with free content, you’re engaging in a form of advertising known as content marketing. Photos, emails, hints, and ebooks are just a few examples of content; other common examples include films, blogs, and podcasts.
With the help of content marketing, your company or brand can become seen as an authority in the eyes of your target audience.
Your content marketing strategy’s end goal is to build your brand’s visibility and credibility to the point where customers will choose to buy from you when they need your product or service.
Making a Content Marketing Plan
It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the prospect of developing a content marketing strategy while also managing all of the other parts of a small business. In spite of the fact that many organizations now contract with outside advertising and content services to handle their content marketing, this is work that can easily be done in-house.
By having a well-thought-out content marketing strategy in place, you can stop wondering if and when to distribute material, and instead have your advertising run itself, all while getting the quantitative results you need.
Do you want to know the best part? When you have a limited advertising budget, content marketing is your best bet because it costs next to nothing to implement. A content marketing strategy for small businesses can be developed by following these steps.
1. Set Your Goals
Clearly articulating your intended outcomes is the cornerstone of any successful content strategy. Content can have a more subtle effect on your small business for long-term effects, even if greater sales and revenue are the most evident goal.
One of your goals as a new company could be to get the word out about what you do. Educating the public about a product or service, reaching out to the local community, or even just gaining more customers are all possible secondary objectives.
Defining what you consider to be a success will help you determine the best content marketing strategy to implement.
2. Make Content
Once you know what you want to accomplish, you can start thinking about the material that will help you get there. Tutorial videos, for instance, would be a fantastic first step if you’re hoping to increase product knowledge.
You want people to recognize and respect your brand, right? Guides and critiques help you get your bearings. Free blogs and other useful material can increase the number of people who become paying clients and help you reach your marketing goals.
Take into account the marketing potential of the following content types:
- Photos. Pictures are a fantastic way to showcase products and services or introduce users to your business and all it has to offer. Photos are an easy, effective method of communicating your message and establishing your brand’s identity.
- Videos. Product demonstrations and how-to guides are two types of videos you might find online. These assist people remember your brand and associate it with the quality service you provide.
- Blogs. Blogs are a great, low-pressure method to get your name out there and provide value to potential clients. Thanks to WordPress, setting up a site is a breeze. The blog can be used to address frequently asked questions, provide helpful hints and checklists, and update readers on the newest company happenings and wares.
- Subscribing to Emails. Keep in touch and be top-of-mind using a simple, low-cost marketing tool email. Your subscribers will receive emails from you on a regular basis with a compilation of your free videos, blogs, and social media posts. If you want to start an email marketing campaign, ConvertKit is a fantastic tool.
- Reviews. Trust in your local business can be gained and maintained through customer feedback. Even when competing with much larger firms, a superb reputation and five-star evaluations can provide you with a foothold in your field. You can register for Google, Facebook, and Yelp reviews, send out email surveys, and offer incentives like discounts to previous customers in exchange for positive evaluations. Showcase glowing testimonials on your website and social media when you receive them.
- eBooks and white papers. Is there anything else you’d like to add? You can further build your credibility and add value for potential consumers by publishing white papers and e-books. These extended forms of content are tailored to readers that value in-depth analysis, easy accessibility, and hard data.
3. Share and Diversify
Once you’ve settled on the content you’ll be providing your audience, it’s time to get it into their hands. Because of their widespread use and low barrier to entry, social media accounts are likely to be your primary distribution outlets. However, you shouldn’t commit to more than you can successfully complete.
When it comes to social media, a few well-maintained accounts are preferable to many weak ones. In the beginning, focus on just having a blog on your own website and using one social media platform.
The goals you hope to achieve and the material you hope to publish with your followers will determine which social media platform is best for your small business.
When it comes to developing and sharing dialogues, Facebook is usually the best option, whereas Instagram is great for sharing visual content like images, videos, and infographics.
Once you’ve established a regular schedule for content creation and distribution, you can start thinking about expanding your distribution channels to include things like email subscriptions and video hosting platforms like YouTube.
4. Make a calendar.
Strong and consistent content is what readers want most. You don’t need a huge budget, the funniest films ever, or to go viral to achieve your goals. Maintaining interest in your social media and website may be achieved by careful preparation of what content will be shared and by providing users with a consistent and valuable experience.
Your audience would like you to maintain providing them with the value they’ve come to anticipate from your content, so make a basic weekly content calendar and stick to it. Planning material can be simplified by assigning a different topic to each day of the week.
Here is an example of a weekly calendar with a specific theme:
- Monday is a great day to start establishing your company’s online presence by sharing an interesting tale or image.
- On Tuesdays, give away a free useful tip or piece of advice.
- This Wednesday, instead of sharing something that will directly benefit you, share something that will benefit the community or your company that is lighthearted and entertaining.
- On Thursday, tell people about one of your services or goods. Reserving one day for sales is more effective than trying to sell every day of the week because you’re still providing value to followers and potential consumers the other six days.
- On Fridays, provide information that is more all-encompassing, like white papers or hour-long movies.
Customers have an idea of what to expect and you have a road map for daily execution when you follow a content plan on a weekly basis.
In order to stay on top of things and schedule posts weeks, months, and quarters in advance, you may use one of the many free calendar templates available online.
As you develop your content marketing strategy, you may save time and effort by using a content management system (CMS) like Hootsuite, TweetDeck, or Feedly to compose, schedule, plan, and publish your material in advance. Only take on as much content marketing as you can handle as a small business, and expand as you gain experience.
5. Review and Improve
When developing a content marketing plan for a small business, the question is, What unique content can I provide followers? is the most important. Find out what you can offer the audience that will make them want to follow you and read your content, and constantly make decisions with that in mind.
You will see results from content marketing, even if the ROI is harder to calculate than with other strategies. If you’re consistently putting out high-quality content, you shouldn’t put too much emphasis on follower count.
Feedback and discussion can also reveal whether and how your content is being used, allowing you to make necessary adjustments. Turning to video material rather than blogs or white papers would be a good strategy if you find that your audience prefers that medium.
Taking into account the motivations of your small business’s followers will help you optimize your content for search engines (SEO). Optimal search engine optimization (SEO) relies on providing information that readers need before they even know they have a problem.
Your chances of ranking highly in search engines improve if you incorporate frequently searched-for terms in your content’s headings, titles, and body. Content should never be forced to comply with SEO unnaturally, but you may utilize tools like Google Keyword Planner to brainstorm article topics and optimize them for search engines.
If you have a strategy in place, content marketing for a small business doesn’t have to be stressful. One of the best places to begin is by making the material you already know your audience wants. You can carve out an area that is tailor-made for your content, your audience, and your business with some trial and error, analysis, and tweaking.