Do you set goals for your content?

Creating content has become the driving force for many online marketing strategies. With the buzzword of “content marketing”, not only does a business need to create engaging and thorough content for their own site, but they also need to consider the marketing plan way before they ever hit publish.

When speaking to many content creators, and discussing the topics they want to create, more times than not they automatically use the word, story or article. I understand, I spent many years creating content just with words so it took me a few years to retrain my brain into thinking about the different content types.

  • Infographics
  • Data-driven surveys
  • Podcasts
  • Videos
  • Slideshows
  • Interactive charts
  • Widgets
  • Social content
  • Visuals
  • Screencasts

Till this day you won’t see me on video (unless someone records my presentation), though I have been approached a few times, to get in front of a camera and use video as a content type. Maybe one day in the future, once I get over my fear of being in front of a camera, will I appear on video. But I have reached outside my comfort zone when developing content to use visuals, audios (even led an internet radio show) and being “PearlyWrites” on social media.

To get back to the original question, when starting to brainstorm about a piece of content, do you set goals first?

Since we know that a piece of content can take a few hours to a few weeks to create, you want to get the most use or “legs” from your efforts. Some goals for content can be:

Depending on what the initial goal is will direct which of the above you are going for. If you are strictly going for rankings, then the brainstorming session will start at the keyword and the conversations that are centered around the particular keyword.

If the goal is to earn authority and attribution, then the first question you ask during brainstorming is:

  • What question are you answering for the user?

Then the second questions are:

  • Who would be interested in this piece of content and why?

Once these questions are answered, it directs the content creator to drill down even further to reviewing what the competition has done and making the decision of how to approach the topic from adding a different perspective, or using a data set which is unique only to your site. Using unique data sets is a strong approach when wanting to hit a few of the above goals. It allows for not only earning authority in the niche but links and gets the community talking about it.

Have other goals not mentioned here? Share & let’s learn together.

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Data Driven Content Attract Readers

Doing an evaluation of your site content every few months allows for growth and opportunities.

Ask yourself or team a few questions to get the discussion started:

  • Does your content attract readers?
  • Are the readers the type of traffic you want to attract to your website?
  • Which content type brings in the most engagement?

Just like how teachers are taught to create lessons using Bloom’s Taxonomy, which attempts to hit all learners: the auditory, tactical or visual learner; the same approach should be used when creating content. There are a variety of users visiting your website and the population demographic may not just be in your city or even country!

Bloom’s Taxonomy
Source: @jepilgreenss

Data used in content doesn’t just have to be written. Try a few different approaches with the data you collect.

Example: The site is a provider of gluten-free products and considered an authority source of information about Celiac Disease and living with gluten intolerance. After reviewing the site analytics your team sees that traffic is strongest on Monday and Tuesday between the hours of 9:00am EST and 12:00pm EST. It shows traffic coming directly from search the first hour and then from the social promotion campaigns. Twitter is driving the most eyes so with all this information, the first indication is to create a piece of content for Monday morning which is focused on what your site is known for which is gluten free information.

Next steps:

  • See where your site is positioned to make sure you do not create content which either your site already has ranking for or that a competitor already has strong placements.
  • Research to find any new studies that were published in the past 6 months to a year where your team can use the data; but not use all the information from just one study but research 2 or 3 studies and decide on the unique attributes to overlay and present.
  • Places to research for data could be the Journal of Medicine, Newswise or the Department of Health.
  • In reality, you are creating your own survey to continue being the authority source on the subject.

What brings readers to your site and share with others are unique data points.

Once these data points are decided, then the content type brainstorming sessions can begin. This is where the fun begins. Since the analytics indicated the high traffic days and times, consider creating a few pieces of content, presenting different data points in a variety of ways, to publish on the different days between the hours when eyes are on your site.

Be creative and optimize for all uses…Happy Publishing!

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