You probably know by now that it’s really important to always keep your website and social channels fresh and up to date with new content. But, did you it goes a bit further than just putting out content that you THINK will be good for your business? Researching the types of content your audience actually wants to see, and topics that will boost your SEO, will ensure you have a comprehensive content plan for the months ahead and will attract the right type of people to your website.
Read on for our top tips on how to research topics for your content plan.
Find your direction
You won’t be able to write an informed marketing strategy, let alone a content plan, without aligning them with your business plans. Start with thinking about what your priorities are for the year. If there are any areas that need some attention, researching and reminding yourself of these will help you form the base of a solid, goal-oriented content strategy.
Keyword led content
There are two types of keyword led content. SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) focussed blogs and long-form content on landing pages. Both will play an important part in forming your content strategy.
SEO focussed content taps directly into the questions that your consumers are asking. Tools like Answer the Public, Google Keyword and Google Search Console can tell you exactly what people are searching for within your field and you can use the results to form your content strategy.
For example, let’s say you were a company that specialises in selling superglue… you might find that one of the most searched queries on Google is “how to get superglue off clothes”. Write a blog about it! Not every blog post should solely be a sales pitch, some must be there simply to inform and raise brand awareness and every click counts in pushing you to the top of the organic rankings.
Consider your types of content
To quote Hubspot:
‘Content strategy refers to the management of pretty much any tangible media that you create and own: written, visual, downloadable… Content strategy is the piece of your marketing plan that continuously demonstrates who you are and the expertise you bring to your industry.’
When you’re planning your content strategy, don’t forget to consider mixing things up. Go back to your goals again and assess which type of media would hit the spot for each one. Analysing your previous years content can also be a real giveaway for the route you should take for the year ahead so get digging and research what’s done well in the past.
Looking to gain more customer trust? Get to work on some video content showing behind the scenes, putting real people in front of real people.
Need to up your organic search ranking? Get blogging about things your ideal customers are searching for.
Want more engagement from your customers? Plan a series of social media posts asking them questions, letting them know that you want to hear from them (don’t forget to listen and learn from what they say- which will help inform your strategy further!).
Remember to include thought leadership
Thought leadership is exactly what it says on the tin, it’s a type of content marketing that leads with your businesses thoughts, passion, talent and experience. It sets your company, and those who work for it, aside as subject experts with insightful things to say.
Thought leadership can position you as experts in your field, engage your audience with useful content and gives context to what you’re offering. Your in-depth knowledge and insights on your product or service can really set you apart from your competitors.
And you don’t just have to limit your thought leadership to blogs, take it to your social media and LinkedIn channels, do live videos, ask industry-specific questions and encourage conversation.
As above, the single most important thing you can do is listen to what your customers have to say. And, if they’re not saying anything, look at the data! Has a certain subject outperformed the others? Analyse your data and learn from the results.
Remember, the golden rules to follow are:
- Return to your business goals
- Look at your data
- Use tools to help you find what people are searching for
- Listen to your customers
And don’t forget to try new things, sowing the seeds now will inform your strategy for next year. Happy planning!