When I hear the term decade, it sounds like a lot of time; but when I say 2010, it feels like yesterday. Ten years ago, I was getting married, our daughter was 5 years old and we had a lot of plans ahead of us. Social media was a big part of our wedding, showing pictures of the events leading up to the big day and then sharing pictures of our wedding with our loved ones. If you step back in time and look at how content strategy has changed in the last decade, you will realize how significantly it has evolved.
To drive traffic ten years ago, companies would just keep pushing content out to reach as many people as they could hoping volume increased traffic to their sites. Within the last decade, the strategy has become much more fine-tuned. Marketers are looking to identity and satisfy the needs of those they want to reach. This requires research and data in order to define the needs of the customers they wish to influence.
According to Brian Dean, in order to keep up with successful content marketing, you need to understand SEO, know how to promote content and be able to use analytics to measure the success. The outcome will influence the future strategy.
“I’m mapping out what I want to say relative to the goals I’ve set, so that every article contributes to my overarching business objectives in some way. It’s more work for sure, but it’s necessary these days.”
Understanding the audience
In order to create successful content, you must understand to whom you are writing. This research can include creating personas. Content is no longer about key words but rather about finding the pain points of your customers and creating solutions to their needs. Once you’ve identified the problem or need, you can start brainstorming keywords that are relevant to building your content. Content is no longer just about traffic – it is about conversions. Content that is built around keywords that demonstrate zero empathy – don’t work.
While I may no longer share photos of getting ready for our wedding, I do share the kids’ milestones and our yearly family vacation. As my life continues to change, so too has my use of social media changed in regard to the subject matter I choose to share.
For content strategy in marketing, a lot has evolved and influenced the direction of how marketers generate what they write. The research involves learning who the audience is, how to address their needs and finding solutions to drive traffic back to a site.
It is not just a one stop shopping to see traffic increase. It’s an evolving process that requires learning from mistakes and improving how to connect with the customers.
Cullinan, F. (2013, June 24th). A brief history of content strategy | Firehead. Retrieved from firehead.net: https://firehead.net/2013/06/a-brief-history-of-content-strategy/
Gillen, P. (2019, January 14). Content Strategy Answers. Retrieved from contentstrategyanswers.com: https://contentstrategyanswers.com/
Halvorson, K. (2018, December 18). Ten Years Later: The Discipline of Content Strategy. Retrieved from http://www.braintraffic.com: https://www.braintraffic.com/blog/ten-years-later-the-discipline-of-content-strategy