Every digital marketing program needs a strong content strategy. But while many brands quickly plunge into the nuts and bolts of strategy development, the most important aspects of content marketing strategy are often overlooked, i.e. activities that occur before and after your content strategy has been designed and implemented.

Although the strategy you use to create, distribute and amplify content will be unique to your brand, the development of a comprehensive content plan should be preceded by at least two key questions:

  1. What content do you already have? In many cases, companies already have a certain amount of content that is underutilized. Auditing your current content portfolio can take time—but if a portion of your existing content can be updated or repurposed, the time and expense you save can be significant. Just as importantly, an accurate understanding of your current content can highlight gaps and areas in which additional content may be required.
  2. Who’s your audience? It goes without saying that an accurate and detailed understanding of your key audience(s) is essential for the development of an effective strategy. By understanding your customers’ needs, preferences and behaviors, you can more effectively align content marketing activities with the marketplace and your business goals.

Measuring Content Strategy Success

On the back end of the content strategy development and implementation process, it’s important to accurately measure performance and leverage quantifiable outcomes as catalysts for constant improvement.

  1. Reach. You’ve created the content, but how do you know if it’s actually reaching your audience? Using analytics and other tools, measure the amount of interaction that is occurring between your content and the target audience.
  2. Consumption. Track how many prospects consume your content through page views, downloads, unique visits and bounce rates. This establishes how often your prospects are consuming your content and the channels they’re using to find your content.
  3. Social engagement. Although something like the number of likes you have on Facebook is useful in molding your outreach strategy, it doesn’t necessarily measure the true value of your content strategy. Consider monitoring a broader scope of metrics including retweets, shares and comments to gain a more accurate picture of social engagement.
  4. Lead generation. Lead generation metrics measure how often content consumers develop into quantifiable leads, shedding light on how well your content strategy contributes to bottom line results. Use lead capture forms and cookies on your website to track the pages your prospects viewed before they filled out your lead generation form.

It’s a time consuming effort to analyze, repurpose and deliver valuable content that will meet your company’s goals, but Walker Sands Digital is here to help. We can create a tailored content marketing strategy that is unique to your company. Call (312) 267-0066 to learn more about what we can do for you.