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How To Build A Content Marketing Engine

Building a content marketing engine takes time, but can be done gradually. Content marketing is the art of creating strategic, targeted, persuasive storytelling. These high-quality stories power your global marketing programs and require creativity, time and resources to be effective. It’s important to provide an ecosystem to help it thrive. As you build-out the best practices below, you will end up with your own version of a content marketing engine that meets your unique marketing needs.

Content Strategy

What We Do

  • Content
  • Inbound
  • Social media
  • Web site
  • Buyer’s personas
  • Buyer’s journey

Highlights

Do you want to manage chaos or build a structured, agile foundation for your content marketing engine?

Content strategy is the starting point to determine content marketing priorities. Review the product road map for go-to-market timelines, set content quantity expectations based on budget and develop processes for content creation. Big ideas and strategy brainstorms, plus buyer personas and buyer’s journeys are at its core.

It’s also the right time to prioritize performance goals, select KPIs for results quantification and explore strategy possibilities, tactics, key audiences, buyer’s journey nurturing and top industry verticals.

Ongoing performance analytics reviews and experimentation will inform any adjustments that may be needed to this plan, given the fast-moving competitive marketplace.

Content Planning

What We Do

  • Content inventory audit
  • Content performance analytics
  • Content story gaps
  • Editorial calendar
  • Editorial style guide
  • Content types mix
  • Marketing technology solutions
  • Production workflow
  • Project management

Highlights

Do you have a content infrastructure for your content engine? If not, content creation quality and consistency are at risk.

Content planning is the next step on the path to building a content engine. Think of it as the infrastructure that supports the creation of quality, effective content. This includes reviews or creation of content audits for story gaps, current content mix,  editorial and brand style guides, as well as content performance data.

A marketing technology (martech) review is also important to assess capabilities to scale content creation. SaaS solutions for production workflow, the writing process, design, content archiving, CRM’s, API Connectors and more will organize the content you have, share past performance and reveal deeper insights that will contribute to the story ideation process.

Content Creation

What We Do

  • Collaborative content planning teams
  • Story ideas brainstorm
  • Create new stories
  • Repurpose existing content
  • Content type mix
  • Apply editorial style guide
  • Metadata tagging (SEO)
  • Custom design
  • Standardized templates

Highlights

Do you lose time creating content that isn’t a priority for marketing programs? Don’t get distracted by the small stuff. 

Creating story ideas can be complex. A representative team that includes product marketing, demand gen, PR and others can offer valuable insights. These are content sub-team working meetings, not company meetings. So keep them small. These meetings are facilitated by a content marketing lead.

Content creation takes time. This is why an editorial calendar is so important. Some asset types take longer than others to produce. Including delivery dates in the editorial calendar makes it clear to everyone when content will be ready and how long it will take to create.

Content type mix is also important. Everyone learns differently and has content style preferences. Plus some stories are more suitable for a visual experience in an infographic, compared to a video or an ebook. Strive for a mix to cover the many ways buyers like to learn.

Content Distribution

What We Do

  • Omnichannel strategies
  • Distribution platforms
  • Audience targeting
  • Distribution timing
  • Global, regional, local strategies
  • Asset type selection
  • Online advertising/SEM
  • Performance analytics
  • Performance optimization

Highlights

Do you know how or where buyers learn about your company and its solutions? You need to or you won’t be discovered.

At first, it may be obvious where your buyers are. They are reading online industry publications, some may be active in industry-focused LinkedIn groups, perhaps they read a product review, and they attend industry conferences. But where is everyone else you want to sell to? In other words, how do you help them find you?

There are many distribution channels that you can use your content on to help catch the eye of prospective customers and reel them in. But the key to success is being there consistently.

When you find a channel that is producing exceptional results, invest more into that channel and experiment with related or new content topics. Also test the high-performing content across other channels. Whether it is syndication, AdWords, paid article sponsorships, great SEO discovery, or hot webinar topics that are in the news, try it all and learn from the results. But never stop. Optimize. The worst thing any company can do is disappear and then maybe reappear. Keep investing in your brand. Stay visible. Generate momentum. Persistence always wins.