Today I spoke at the Content Marketing Show, on the topic of ‘Why content marketing needs content strategy’. Here are my slides, and some notes on my talk.
To kick off, I looked at the difference between content strategy and content marketing. While some people see them as part and parcel of the same thing, I see them as two clearly defined and very different entities (as I’ve blogged about in the past).
Content strategy is about the ‘how’, the user, the big picture, the governance and the planning, while content marketing is about the ‘what’, the business, the tactics and the individual campaigns.
Content marketing needs content strategy. If you approach content without strategy, I think you’re setting yourself up for failure. A purely tactical approach will only work in the short-term, and opens up a whole host of problems like inconsistency, inefficiency, and weakens your brand overall.
At Brilliant Noise, we break content strategy down into six elements:
- Purpose – the overarching reason why your content exists. Purpose applies to every piece of content, not just specific campaigns.
- Principles – the fundamental propositions that form the foundations of your content.
- Platforms – the places where and tools with which you create, publish and amplify your content.
- Processes – the series of actions that you need to complete to create your content.
- People – the people involved in the content process and the way they are organised in relation to it.
- Performance – the benchmarks for success and the ways in which you measure the impact of your content.
Having these elements in place can help to get rid of a lot of the difficulties that content projects commonly run into, because they provide essential structure and governance.
They also make a huge impact on productivity and efficiency – the content strategy elements come together to create a formula that makes it easier to repeat the process of creating great content time and time again.
Embarking on creating and implementing a content strategy can seem daunting – you’ll have to deal with some thorny issues and ask difficult questions, but it’s worth it. It’s also worth remembering that you don’t have to do it all at once. Take an agile approach – think about the biggest pain point in your content process and work on the content strategy element that will alleviate it.