The end of the year is a great time for reflection and making resolutions for the year ahead. It’s also the ideal time to plan your marketing and content strategies for the coming year.
The best way to do this is to create a ‘wish list’ of things that could make next year better than the current one. The items on this list should improve your output, make efficiencies and get the new year off to a flying start … sadly a puppy might not help here!
We’ll explore what we think will be on every content marketer’s wish list, and give you some tips on how to get them (just in case Santa doesn’t deliver). Enjoy!
4 things on every content marketer’s wish list
1. More time
This will almost certainly be on every content marketer’s wish list, as time is always in short supply. We understand it’s tough trying to squeeze conception, production, publication, dissemination and analysis into a five-day work week!
However, unless Santa has a time machine we don’t know about (and let’s face it, if he does he might not let you use it) you’re going to have to give yourself the gift of time instead. But, don’t worry, we can help!
To sum up, you just need a more organised approach to content marketing.
Start off by documenting your content strategy, so you know exactly what to do with each piece of content you create. This ensures that everyone involved stays on the same page and your content gets out on time – result!
Once you’ve done that, create a schedule and stick to it. Content management systems, like HubSpot or GatherContent, are fantastic for staying on top of things – so why not try using one?
You can then start to plan individual pieces in advance. Having a clear structure and a good idea of what you’re going to say will speed everything up and should improve the quality of your writing.
Come up with a publication and promotion pattern that fits around you and, more importantly, your audience. Then apply it to everything you create. This will also help you if you decide to repurpose content later.
2. A bigger budget
Marketing budgets never seem to stretch very far, so a common Christmas wish for marketers is having more cash to play with.
However, we don’t think every content marketer’s wish list should include a bigger budget – you just need to use the one you’ve got more efficiently!
Try using a data-driven approach to ensure you’re investing in the right places. Analytics software can tell you if your PPC or ad-spend is effective.
This data can also indicate the areas of your site that appeal to your visitors. Let this inform your content strategy and improve your visitors’ overall online experience.
From there, create long-lasting, engaging content and you’ll start to reap the rewards from your modest marketing budget.
Don’t worry about other companies having bigger budgets. If you use yours more efficiently, you’ll be able to beat them at their own game!
3. High-quality, effective content every time
This should be the most important thing on every content marketer’s wish list. However, you must realise that this is within your grasp – you don’t need Santa and his elves to help you!
Start off by learning all you can about writing awesome content. Look for tips online, attend training courses or even just ask for feedback from colleagues. They’re bound to have some helpful insights.
Then, you need to get to know your audience. Become your users’ best friend by assessing their behaviour and communicating with them through email and social media.
You’ll start to understand their wants and needs, which will allow you to deliver content tailored to them. This will help you build trust, and educate them about their solution (without giving it all away).
To make sure your content’s in tip-top condition, check it for the most common copywriting mistakes. Any obvious bloopers will switch a reader off instantly. Send your content for a quick copy-edit too, just to be safe!
Measure your content’s effectiveness to make sure your content strategy is working. Without in-depth analysis, you’ll never know if you’re reaching your goals.
Don’t worry if you seem to fail once or twice – it’s all part of the learning process. It may take a while to find out what works for your audience, but it’ll be worth it in the end.
4. Boost in SEO rankings
93% of online experiences begin with a search engine, so it makes sense that most content marketers tend to write with SEO in mind. However, your content must be readable too – otherwise Google and your readers won’t thank you.
If you ask Santa for a boost in SEO rankings, he may help you a little – after all, the eCommerce sector flourishes at Christmas! However, there are a few things you can do to help your site prosper all year round.
- Choose specific, longtail queries for keywords
- Include them in the right places (title, subhead, main body, metadata, alt tags etc.)
- Use online tools, such as Yoast, to make sure you’re doing things properly
So, just in case the big fella gets stuck in a chimney and can’t deliver your ideal pressies, here are a few ways you can fix things on your own. Hopefully, this content marketer’s wish list will help you prepare for the year ahead, and make things just a little more sparkly!