How To Know When To Revise Your Content Marketing Strategy

Last updated: 02-15-2020

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How To Know When To Revise Your Content Marketing Strategy

How To Know When To Revise Your Content Marketing Strategy
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Your content marketing strategy is more important today than ever. After all, it’s no surprise that, given the number of ads we are faced with, the vast majority are ignored. With ad blockers and other ways to filter out ads, people no longer view ads the way they did 10–15 years ago.
That said, people are still looking for information, and they want to be inspired, educated, and entertained. Businesses that recognize the shift in consumer sentiment have ditched the hard-sell tactics. Instead, they are humanizing their brands so that they speak to the challenges that people face and how a product or service will help them meet that challenge.
In other words, your content marketing strategy is your new advertising strategy.
However, like most things, without regular maintenance, your content marketing strategy can become stale and ineffective. So, knowing when to revise your content marketing strategy is critical in being able to sustain its effectiveness.
Here are six signs to help you see when to revise your content marketing strategy.
1. Metrics are heading in the wrong direction
Why do you use content marketing?
Perhaps it is for one or more of the following reasons:
Build trust with your future customers
Engage and inform existing customers
Attract and qualify prospects
Increase sales
With that in mind, it would be fair to say that a change is needed when your metrics show one or more of the following issues:
Your content isn’t being shared as much on social media and other sites.
Pageviews are declining.
The time spent on the website is declining.
Your website is attracting qualified prospects.
Here’s how to solve this:
Analyze the data. Look especially at how your best-performing content does against content that performs ok or poorly.
Look for patterns in what your best content offers and revise your other content accordingly.
Create content or revamp existing content so that it shares the characteristics of your best-performing content.
Monitor and analyze the newly created content to see if it performs as it was intended to.
After you revamp your content, if the content that was not performing so well is performing better, you know you are on the right track. You can then update your content strategy by revising or adding guidelines, so your content creators are producing content that is more likely to give you better results.
2. Social media presence is not growing
If you are not reaching enough people—or the right people—on your social media channels, you’ll need to re-examine your content marketing strategy.
Here’s how to solve this:
You might need to reach out to more niche audiences that closely match your ideal customers.
Look for groups or related audiences that you are currently missing. Create content that appeals to them and promote those posts through Facebook ads that target that demographic.
Try formats and content that appeals to your target customers. For example, if you’re trying to attract traveling salespeople, you could share links to podcasts or webinars that they can listen to on the road or in the air. Or, if you wanted to attract key decision-makers in companies that face a common issue, you could share white papers or case-studies that testify to the effectiveness of your process or products.
Include videos that highlight the points in your text to reinforce your message.
For topics that are difficult for your target audience to digest, consider using videos, infographics, and images as part of your content strategy. It has been proven statistically that these content formats receive higher engagement rates because they convey key information forms that are easier to understand than written material.
3. Visitors are not converting
If your site is attracting visitors but they aren’t converting into leads or sales , there is a good chance that your content isn’t serving the purpose it should.
Here’s how to solve this:
Getting feedback from visitors and monitoring their online activity will provide insights into whether the content is not formatted well, not easily understood, etc.
For companies that sell highly complex or technical products, using technical jargon could be a turn-off rather than communicating the benefits of your products to your future customers.
Create search-friendly content for every stage of the content marketing funnel that leads your future customers to the next step in their journey.
You can make these modifications fairly easily to improve your efforts to build trust with your audience. User experience and buyer enablement also are areas to look at to improve the overall ease of use and the buying process of your future customers.
Your content marketing strategy should support the objectives of the business while informing your future customers. Making your teams aware of the role that content marketing plays can help them to frame your content in easy-to-understand and digestible forms regardless of whether it is placed on your website or used by your sales teams in an office or for trade show marketing .
4. Search engine traffic is on the decline
If the ranking on search engine results for your products and services has fallen—and especially if you’ve dropped out of the first few results—it’s time for an SEO audit.
Here’s how to solve this:
Examine your analytics and SEO data.
Conduct research on Google’s algorithm changes and the recommended guidelines on other search engines.
See if you’re missing keywords that future customers might use to search for your products or services.
Check to see if you need to update your keywords.
Refresh your current content to reflect that new strategy—and create new content around those keywords and the content ideas they represent.
Review your overall SEO content strategy more often to ensure it is in tune with changes in search engine algorithms. Also, ensure that you refresh your content to meet the search engines’ new guidelines.
Monitor your content’s performance on an ongoing basis.
Look at other potential causes too. You might need to improve your site’s:
Mobile responsiveness,
Page load speed or structural issues
If so, you’ll need to bring in your web developers to fix your site as required.
5. Content is too self-serving
To create SEO wins before search engines made significant changes to their algorithms, content would often be stuffed with keywords and focused on promoting the products and services associated with the site.
While you can no longer win at SEO using those content marketing tactics , it also stands to reason that if your content isn’t aimed at helping your future customers overcome their most pressing issues, you won’t be able to build trust beyond perhaps a transaction.
Gartner in their research has found that the buying process is not a linear process; it has changed to look like the one below:
Michael Brenner provides some content marketing statistics through this SlideShare :
To aid in the buying process, you need to revise your content to make sure it provides the value and insights that your future customers need before they consider making a purchase.
Here’s how to solve this:
Content like white papers, how-to articles, case studies, and answers to the latest changes in industry developments should feature on your content marketing calendar to showcase your expertise without making it a sales pitch. This, in turn, positions your business as a vital, trustworthy resource to refer to as they go through the buying process.
So, what makes your content great in the eyes of your target audience?
It is written for a specific audience (your ideal customers or future customers)
It is optimized for search and social
It provides value to your target audience
Your content should be structured well to aid scanning and reading
The content must inform
Great content converts readers with a strong, simple, yet clear call to action
Great content is distributed and promoted well
6. You are working in isolation
While someone in your organization needs to manage the content production process, ensuring content is produced consistently and that the strategy is being executed doesn’t mean that they should operate independently of everyone else in the organization.
In fact, you can’t build an effective content marketing strategy if you don’t know what is going on in the rest of your organization and if the others don’t know about the content you are producing.
The content you produce must also serve the purposes of sales. So, getting information from the marketing and sales teams and tracking the status of leads and other marketing efforts also are important for improving the effectiveness of your marketing techniques.
Revising your content marketing strategy
We know that a well-structured content marketing strategy provides several benefits, such as improving brand reputation, generating leads, advancing your buyer enablement processes, building your community, winning you brand advocates, and increasing your revenue.
When your content isn’t performing as it should, look for the signs we covered above. If you notice one or more of them, look for the underlying cause and cure it.
It also helps to review the indicators often. We know that search engine algorithms are constantly changing, as do customers’ preferences for different content types and formats. So, staying abreast of current content publishing trends is vital for staying relevant and for publishing the most effective content for each of your target customer groups. Revising your strategy will help to guide them toward the next stage in conversion and/or advocacy.


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