As we continue this series of planning your communications, we hope you’re seeing where you may strengthen your public relations, advertising and marketing communications efforts.
This next topic — content strategy — is often where too many companies start their communications efforts. For one, developing content, like blog posts, white papers, marketing brochures and more, seems like a good communication move no matter where you are in the process. But if you haven’t identified your vision, goals and objectives, identified your target audience, including where they are (i.e. communications channels) and designed a strategy around reaching them, what makes you think your content will get noticed?
But let’s say you are ready for step eight: Content Strategy. This is not to be confused with just putting words down on paper. In today’s modern world, how your content will be displayed also is key.
For instance,if your audience is swayed by research and data, how you present that information can make or break the effectiveness of that entire effort. It’s why infographics have gained popularity. It’s a visual way to represent a lot of information so its more easily digested.
Consider a content strategy as how you are going to assess, develop and manage the ideas, thoughts and content you will use to direct conversations, viewpoints and reputation and image.
Start with listing your “big ideas.” What do you want people to walk away with from your content? Go beyond just “buy my product.” Rather, what ideas do you have around your products and services that others don’t? What’s unique about your viewpoint?
Is there a call to action? Are you asking people to do something they’ve never done before? If so, you may have to justify that request with data. Or, perhaps you’re trying to change behavior. Why should they? What compelling case can you make and how can you deliver that message that is different and will break through any barriers to change?
How is your content furthering your identity? For example, if you’re selling something fun, your content better be delivered in a fun manner. If your goal is to be taken seriously, then your content should be designed to reflect that.
What are your audiences pain points? Can your content help further their own goals?
These are just a few things to ask yourself when designing a content strategy.
Read the entire template for the Modern Communications Plan here.