As you start to develop your content marketing strategy you will see tons of tools advertising that they will make your life easier (I even put out an infographic on the subject). Choose carefully and make sure you REALLY need the services before you sign up. I can think of a dozen tools and platforms that have been marketed to me this week alone and I really didn’t need any of them. You really need to assess your needs before you run into these ads, that way you can decide if they are right for you. It’s rare that I see a useless tool or platform, I just don’t need them all to accomplish my goals. Most days I publish content for myself and for multiple clients with just a word processing program a news alert aggregator and a calendar. As you develop content you might find the need for more tools such as a graphics program, but keep your list as simple as possible. Content Marketing requires surprisingly few tools to get the job done and to do it well. Don’t fall for all the hype when a well organized system will work just as well.
In Content Marketing, remember ABCD! Always Be Capturing Data. Every bit of information you collect can be useful. Click through rates, shares, page views, every single analytic your platforms give you should be tracked. What info you monitor varied from platform to platform. Blogs track page views, Twitter tracks views and shares. Make a habit of at least capturing a page view of the analytics page of each platform you use. Monthly tracking is the minimum but you really should be tracking by week for better analysis. Even if you just find a convenient way to store it until you can have an analyst take a look at the data for you, make sure you are collecting as much info as possible. Having too much data is an easy problem to fix, not having data is impossible to fix. If you don’t need all the data you collected you can ignore the parts that are extra but if you need the number of page views for each day and that information isn’t available, there may be no way to retrieve it later.
Content Marketing – An easy way to target your customers better with your content is to answer questions you have heard more than one person ask. Every business has a list of questions they are asked almost everyday. At some point we can anticipate that the question is coming and head it off with a short explanation. This is that same concept, just used for your content marketing. If two people ask the same question, more have the same one in mind but don’t want to bring it up. Anticipating these questions shows your expertise. It also sets your customer at ease since they are more informed without having to ask you directly. As you become more of an expert you will know what they are thinking, write about it.
Here is a basic breakdown of content marketing. It is a powerful tool, especially for small businesses. In this arena you can beat the big companies with smart, timely content.