A content plan should ultimately serve your marketing campaign goals. That is, to support the overall campaign theme or “idea” which is designed to capture interest in your audience and ultimately aid in creating interest (leads) and aiding in the closing of sales opportunities.
Many b2b businesses find it difficult to set individual content goals mainly because “they don’t know what they don’t know”. Often times businesses struggle to have a concise elevator pitch let alone a clear marketing campaign with supporting content. However, when you break the problem down, it is very achievable to come up with simple, directional goals for your content. Then you can build objectives for each part of your campaign.
Questions to ask:
- Who is the target audience?
- What is their role of the person reading the content?
- What problem does your solution solve for them?
- What do you need them to know about your solution?
- What format will you deliver your message within?
- What emotions would you like to elicit?
- What messaging will educate and engage them?
- What do you want them to do?
A content plan needs a clear overriding goal and then objectives for specific things you need to achieve. Initially, content goals are never clear. There’s so many things your content could achieve. So let’s weed through the chaff to get to the whey. We’re in search of that crystal clear “objective” that will help us reach our prospects, educate and entertain, and turn them into excited, loyal customers.
For example, your direction goal for an upcoming blog and social media campaign could be:
“To inform sales managers (in north america) who regularly perform sales forecasting that there frustrations have been heard and there is an easier way to compile reports each week for their CEO.”
“Generate a following among sales and marketing practitioners by writing about the age old back and forth and finger pointing within these two teams and how new mobile tools help assist with team communications.”
Of course, a plan can be a pleasant journey or a military execution – likely depending on your organizational culture. But a goal should help excite you (and the team) while also providing a “yard stick of intent” to determine if what you’ve produced matches the original intent.
What’s next? From here, and often at a campaign level, you’ll set actual Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). But we’ll get to that in the next post!
If you missed the first post “How to Build a Content Plan…” be sure to catch up on that also.