Developing effective, relevant content is not always easy.  Here are 7 steps to help you through the process.

What is Content Marketing?

Content marketing is an ongoing process that involves creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire, and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience.  The primary objective is to attract and retain current and potential consumers to act and purchase your product or service.

Content marketing is an art as well as a creative process that provides relevant communication to your customers and prospects without bombarding them with a hard sell, disruptive ad strategy.   Instead of talking only about your products or services including features, you deliver information that educates your buyer and provides the benefits of your product or service directly for them.   How is what you offer going to help or benefit them?

The reason for this type of content strategy is that when businesses, deliver consistent, ongoing valuable information to buyers, the consumer ultimately rewards that business by ongoing purchase loyalty.

Content mapping is going a step further to define how to gather appropriate, relevant information to identify and implement the right content.

Essentially there are 7 steps to the content mapping process.

  1. Identify your audience.

In a previous post, I identified key identifiers for your target persona.  These identifiers include title, length in jobs, daily tasks, responsibilities, likes/dislikes, frustrations, pressures, needs, activities, emotional mindset and role in buying process. For more information regarding identifiers refer to my previous blog post on building personas–Building Personas

  1. Seek out the information and questions your audience wants.

What information or questions is the audience you identified asking at each stage of the buying process?  The buying process includes 6 steps–awareness, interest, research, desire, user and finally evangelism.  Match those questions to what information you can provide that incorporates the benefits of your product or a service while answering your audience’s needs.

  1. Find the answers within what you offer.

What answers can you provide for each of the questions identified.  Answer those questions your personas ask.  Use your product or service to demonstrate clearly and concisely how what you provide not only benefits them but enhances or betters their life and personal and work environment

  1. Review.

Carefully look at your answers and identify what is favorable to you and your products in your answers and what information makes you unique.

  1. Map out your ideas for content.

Now that you have ideas for the content start by researching what content you have available.   Or,  research what would help your audience answer their questions and learn more in the process.  Take this time to identify steps to answering the questions-if the questions have multiple parts to the answer.

  1. Research best places to place your content that reaches your audience.

Look for places where more information is needed. Look at areas where you might be missing content.

  1. Create it.

Start creating content to fill the holes, answer the questions and add value to your customers in relation to your product or service.

Each step will take some time.  The steps are simple and will help create effective, engaging content.