Content marketing is a major part of any social media strategy because it allows you to have meaningful conversations with your customers and to subtly display your message your value and the solutions and the services that you can offer to them without going into adverts or into hard sell. It’s a great factor to bring in to build a better relationship with your customer and also to be seen as a figure of authority and of trust within your industry. So why are so many businesses not doing content marketing well?

One of the biggest reasons is that they don’t have a strategy behind what they’re going to do. Too often I consult with clients that tell me that their content strategy is to post two to three times a week on Facebook or social media platforms. This is actually an execution this isn’t actually a strategy behind what they’re trying to say and what they can be doing is missing valuable opportunities to actually talk to and connect with their customers. And this is where content marketing truly comes in.

So when we look at content marketing we break it down into four points. Why. Who. What and then How.

The Why?

Before you can enter into a conversation you need to know yourself you need to know your business and you need to know why you’re doing what you’re doing. What is it in your business that you’re passionate about. Why do you get out of bed in the morning. What is it that’s driving you. Why do you do what you do. When you have a good sense of yourself and your business what makes you different what makes you unique why your customers would want to choose you over your competitor. You’re in a much better position to actually start the conversation. Who.

The Who?

Who are your customers. Really take some time to examine your business and think about your potential customers or what we call and marketing your customer avatars.  Think about the different types of customers you want to talk to and connect with and your business will help you build up your content plan so that you know you’re talking to everybody in the right way.

Another way to think of it this is if you went to a dinner party and you had to talk to lots of different people within the room. Would you have the same conversation with every single person or your conversation change?  If you were perhaps talking to the host’s mother compared to the host’s teenage son. So you’ve got to think about how you actually want to frame up that conversation depending on who you’re talking to.

Take some time and check out our free download for your Customer Avatar Worksheet to actually be able to map this out.

The What? 

What can your business offer to that customer? What problem are you solving for them? What solutions are you offering?  What is it you can do for them? What are their pain points? What are the things they’re frustrated with?  What is it that they are going to get from you?

So really start to think about how this can be  different for different customer groups may have different pain points or many different things from you. Try and put yourself into your customers shoes and think about what they could need from you and how best your business can solve that problem.

Now that we know why we’re doing it who we want to talk to and what we want to say to them now we can think about how we actually have that conversation.

The How? 

This is where we look at our options for actually producing content.  We can decide whether it’s more appropriate to create a video or to write an article or maybe it’s just a series of fun posts. Maybe our content is going to be a series of all of these.  Once we establish who we’re talking to and we know more about that customer it can help us make a better decision on the right way to actually communicate with them.