You may be asking yourself, “why have a content marketing plan?” Content marketing plans are complicated and difficult to execute, we understand. Putting any extra time into your content marketing may seem like time spent away from your customers, your employees and your family. However, a good content marketing plan can actually save you time in the long run as well as make your digital marketing more effective.
What is a content marketing plan?
So, what is a content marketing plan? Simply put, it’s a road map of what topics you’re going to discuss, what type of content (video, text, images, poll) you’re going to post and where you are going to post that content. You can choose any time frame, but you’ll likely have better results if you choose to plan for at least a quarter and no more than a year out.
Why have a content marketing plan?
There are many advantages to having a content marketing plan. Here are the main ones:
1. Keeping you organized. Even if you don’t have a written plan, you’re likely to have some type of plan floating around in your mind. Why not commit it to paper and eliminate the need to recall that idea you had last week when you need it? A good content marketing plan helps you be more efficient, since you don’t have to decide what to write every time you need to post something. You simply consult your plan and start writing.
2. Presenting a cohesive brand message. With a content marketing plan, your posts will be less random and will present a solid, cohesive branding message throughout all of your content channels and platforms.
3. Making it duplicatable. If you store your content marketing plan in your head, it’s impossible for someone else to step in and make posts if you’re busy, get sick or (heaven forbid) take a vacation. When your plan is clearly outlined, it makes it easy for someone else on your staff to take over that responsibility temporarily. With a content marketing plan, you can even outsource the writing and posting to freelancers or an agency.
4. Allowing you to better allocate resources. Your content marketing plan can also help you delegate the responsibility for your content marketing posts by assigning a writer to each post (or outsourcing that function). You can divide your marketing budget among the different content channels and better match your posts to the revenue and traffic that each channel generates.
How to develop a content marketing plan?
How do you go about setting up your content marketing plan? It’s admittedly a tall task, so here’s what to consider:
1. Who is your audience? If you haven’t already created one or more buyer personas for your products and services, this is a good time. You need to know about your audience, such as their age, location, education and/or gender, to be able to effectively engage them with your content.
2. What is the goal of your content marketing? Are you looking to increase sales with your content? Or perhaps you’re looking to get leads for your sales team (which is slightly different from simply increasing sales) or attract people to RSVP to your events or download an ebook or white paper? Undefined goals lead to unfocused content.
3. What channels are you using for your content marketing? Do you primarily post on your website or do you have multiple channels? If you are using multiple channels, you’ll want to support, but not duplicate, your content, since your customers and readers are likely to read more than one of your channels.
4. How often do you intend to post content? Are you looking to post content daily, weekly or several times a week? Will you alternate between channels or post on each every day? This is essential to your content plan, so you know how many topics you’ll need for your time period.
Once you address these points, the next step is finding ideas to write about. If you’re new to content marketing, you likely have dozens of ideas and can’t foresee the day that you’ll need help coming up with topics (but trust us, that day will come). There are numerous content planning tools that can help you come up with topics. Some of our favorites are:
- Feedly. You tell this tool what topics you’re interested in, and it creates a curated RSS feed with blog posts, news articles and other content about those topics.
- BlogAbout. This is a brainstorming tool that helps you come up with topics surrounding your central theme.
- BuzzSumo. This content marketing tool also addresses the SEO aspect of content and gives you an idea of how well content on a specific topic or related topics will do in the marketplace.
Your content marketing plan can be as simple as a line or two per conent piece on your business calendar, or it can be a more extensive formal document. The essential elements are what topic you are going to post, who is going to write and post it, where you are going to post it (social media pages, your website, your blog, a guest post on another website), and the type of format you’ll use (text, images, video, etc.).
So whether you cover the basics or go in-depth, why should you have a content marketing plan? Because without it, you’re sacrificing organization and efficiency.
Executing your content marketing plan with WriterAccess
The good news is that onec you’re armed with a good, well-developed content marketing plan, you don’t have to do all of the writing and posting yourself. WriterAccess has a talent pool of more than 15,000 vetted writers that can turn your content ideas and plan into effective and well-written posts for your website, blog or social media pages. We make it easy for you to connect with a writer or team of writers who can turn your content marketing plan into reality.
How does it work? All you have to do to get started is register on our site and you’ll get a free 14-day trial to sample the service.
Here’s what else our content writing platform brings to the table:
- An easy to use AI-powered writer search tool
- A Customer base of more than 40,000
- More than 2 million completed projects to date
- A 99.97% project success rate
- Three-tiered pricing, so you only pay for the services your company needs
- Five levels of writers
Come see how WriterAccess can make executing your content marketing plan easy and affordable by signing up for your free account today.