3 Questions to Kick-Off Your Content Strategy
POSTED BY KA-LOK HO
These questions were adapted from The Brand Gap by Marty Neumeier in his approach to building a brand. However, the lens through which I’ll be examining this today will be focused on content.
The brands that excel at creating content consistently, with growth and compelling results are the ones that can answer these simple questions emphatically;
1. Who is it for?
2. What problem are you solving for them?
3. Why does that matter?
Instead, most content from brands answers an entirely different question — ’what do you do?’ — which is a self-serving notion compared to the prior.
Most of us get stumped thinking about what to create that will work on a consistent basis and Seth Godin regularly talks about the myth behind writers block – the reason for writers block is because we don’t know who we are talking to. We never get talkers block, because when we talk we know who’s on the receiving end of our words, we’re facing them. So the importance of a deep understanding your audience is a key first step; ‘who is it for?’
Each question gets exponentially more difficult to answer, most every business can answer the first, but the second and third? Here is where the gold lies, and by spending more time answering these questions, the content you create won’t be content for the sake of content, but actual relevant and impactful material.
Being able to answer, ‘what problem are you solving?’ and ‘why does that matter?’ will significantly raise the quality of what you’re releasing and separate you from the noise. It shows empathy for your audience that you actually do understand their needs and you’re there to serve them. If content marketing is about building trust, by empathising with their needs you implicitly state you understand.
There’s a dichotomy I see in content teams. They are either small less than 3 person teams, or massive 10+ person teams – rarely ever an in-between.
The reason is usually the smaller-teams’ business does not value content, but understandably so, because they aren’t creating the impact or receiving the results they’re looking for, which results in a smaller team. It’s a chicken and egg situation.
Whereas on the other side of the coin, the 10+ content teams are churning out content at a rate that even they can only just keep up with.
Is it just a fact of quantity > quality?
The 10+ teams have cracked the questions at the start of this post.
Once you pass that bridge, the ideas, the content, the valuable information will all come so fluidly that it becomes a necessity to have a larger team to bring all those ideas to life.
There’s a certain threshold that we eventually pass where content ideation will sustain itself. By building an engaged audience, people who regularly interact with the content you put out – for examples sake, though numbers rarely correlate with true engagement, around 500 followers/subscribers etc – your audience will begin telling you what they want to see more of, what they want answered, what they need help with.
But to get to that stage, you must put in the strong foundation of quality content first, and it all begins with answering those 3 little questions.
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