Content Marketing: There’s gold in them therrrr hills

Identifying the purpose of your content marketing strategy.

So you’ve read and reread my last post. You’ve shared it with all your colleagues and friends. You’ve waited patiently for the next installment. And most importantly, you finally understand exactly what this content marketing is (and isn’t).

So what’s next?

Naturally, you’re excited to put a bridle on this content beast and ride it triumphantly into the marketing sunset. And who can blame you? From your vantage point, that horizon looks undeniably bright. It literally glows with the prospect of increased sales numbers, well-qualified leads, a long list of email subscribers, healthy web traffic and social media engagement numbers, and much, much more. Just throw some well-chosen words around the internet and bask in the spoils; right?

Wrong.

Content marketing isn’t a sprint. And good preparation is the difference between finding success beyond the horizon and smashing head-on into a horizon that’s been painted on a brick wall. As eager as you are to start engaging your audience immediately, entering into a conversation unprepared is a recipe for disaster. You see, content without a defined purpose is nothing more than background music—sure it’s there, but it’s incredibly easy to ignore.

So don’t waste their time—or yours.

Time might just be the world’s rarest commodity. Creating content requires a fairly substantial investment of your time. Plus, each piece of content you publish is a plea for someone to part with some of his or her own limited supply.  That’s why the first step in your content marketing strategy is to define your purpose.

The purpose doesn’t have to be terribly complex. But it does need to be actionable—and preferably measurable. For example, if your brand’s entire web presence consists of a Facebook page, your first content marketing goal might be to attract new followers. Other examples include:

  • Increasing foot traffic at your location
  • Increasing visits to your website
  • Increasing donations to your cause
  • Increasing email subscriptions
  • Increasing attendance at events

 

Identifying how you’ll accomplish your goals will come later in your process. This crucial first step is all about being honest and realistic about what return you want to see from your investment of time.

Another peek behind the curtain.

It’s no secret—I’m content marketing to you right now. And to help you understand just how straightforward this first step is, I’m going to give you a little peek at the three main goals of my content marketing strategy for this series of posts:

  • I want you share this article with all your friends and colleagues on social media.
  • I want you scroll to the bottom of this article and subscribe to our blog.
  • I want you to choose McCullough Creative for your next marketing, advertising, web, exhibit, display, or whatever other creative project you have in mind.

 

Of course, I may not have won you over yet. And that’s okay. Like I said, content marketing isn’t a sprint. There’s marketing gold in them therrr hills. And I’ll still be mining for it when we speak again.

Stay tuned to this blog for my next installment on the topic of content marketing. I’ll explain the next step in creating your content-marketing strategy. I’ll also help you understand what things you’ll want to consider as you do.

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