Steps to a Successful Content Marketing Plan- Part 3

content marketing, content plan, content calendar, content review, content strategy

Part 3 of 4: final content prep

By the end of these 3 weeks, you’ll be nearly ready to tackle content marketing like a pro. The last segment reviewed how to audit your current content, document your new content strategy and how to create topic ideas that fuel this new strategy.  Up next is creating a content calendar based on priorities and ‘low hanging fruit’, fine tune SEO and successfully review and edit your first piece of content.

 

Week seven: Content calendar

Coming up with a content calendar is fairly easy if you keep these few things in mind – what headlines did you come up with over the past several weeks?  Which target audience has the least amount of content dedicated to them? Where do the greatest opportunities lie because your competitors have yet to tackle that topic with their own content?  Once you can answer each of these questions, schedule the content on your calendar accordingly and refer to it each and every day.  This will make creating and writing that much easier.

This week, set up tools that manage this calendar.  It could be something as simple as Google Drive.  Next identify who has enough information this month to start creating copy and make a note of it in the calendar.  Assign deadlines so that the process stays on track. Add information to this shared document like the approval date of the piece, where it will be published, how it ties in with your goals and what the results were.

Week eight: Updating webpages

In week four you were instructed to identify your underperforming webpages.  Now is the time to fix them up and improve what you already have.  This is considered low hanging fruit.  Refresh these pages by ensuring that they have unique, exciting and logical titles, meta descriptions and H1s.

Chunk your content.  Meaning break your content up with new images, headlines, shorter paragraphs, subheads. All of this makes the page more user-friendly.

Add a call-to-action button on key pages.  This could be anything from asking them to subscribe to your blog or e-letter to downloading a guide, watch a video or having you contact them.

Week nine: Content review

The moment of truth! It’s time to review and edit the piece that your king or queen of content has written.  Keep in mind, this is a very important moment.  And how you approach it can make or break what happens next.

Remember, writing is not the easiest thing in the world to do and not everyone is a seasoned writer, so when reviewing the content, keep this in mind. If you are too harsh, the writer may never want to come back and write again.  Judge the piece too easily, and you will be back to square one before you went on this nine week journey.  So when you are reviewing keep these things at the forefront of your mind:

  • Be appreciative of whatever is given to you. Use it as a coaching opportunity if what you get back isn’t exactly what you expected.
  • Review it with its creator and discuss all the things you have been working towards over the past two months – Does the piece align with your strategy, business goals, audience? Does the piece flow with SEO best practices? Does it have a compelling headline that your audience will search for? Does it have supporting subheads?
  • Is the piece written grammatically correct? Would you read it yourself and find interest in it?
  • Would you share this piece on social media? Would your audience find value in it?

Once the piece has passed the muster, add it to your content calendar and follow the process associated with it.

The final push with the next 3 weeks will cover publishing and promoting your first piece of content, celebrating your hits, reviewing results.  Until next time, happy writing!

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