Content Marketing Planning 101

Planning a year’s worth of content sounds like a daunting task. You may be asking yourself: “where do I even start?” or “how can I avoid this?” The thing is, there’s no easy way to avoid it. Strategic content marketing planning is crucial for growing your brand and making potential consumers aware of your mission, products, and services.

93% of B2B marketers use content marketing. This is because dodging content planning isn't an option if you want to stay in front of your customers and in the frontline with your competitors. Not to mention, conversion rates are nearly 6x higher for content marketing adopters than non-adopters.

Planning out your content marketing strategy creates streamlined goals, transparency and organization among your team and more time to focus on engaging with your customers. So know that you’re convinced this is something you need to etch some time out for, let’s dive in and discuss where you should start.

Step 1: Theme, Goal and KPI Setting

In efforts to create a foundation for your yearly content planning, it’s important to establish a theme, goals and KPIs. Your theme will be the overarching direction for your brand. If you can’t choose one theme, narrow your options down into pillars. Note: Try to focus on no more than 3 - 4 pillars per year. This will help keep a clear direction for your brand and content marketing strategy.

For this blog we will be using the example of a coffee shop. This coffee shop may want to focus on the following pillars: customer satisfaction, a new espresso launch and community building.

Once you've established these, create at least one goal for each. Make sure each goal is measurable (important for setting KPIs), specific, and attainable. A goal for the customer satisfaction pillar may be to yield 20 positive Google reviews per month. If you set your goal up correctly (measurable, specific and attainable), you’ve already touched base on your KPI. KPI stands for key performance indicators. For the example above, our KPI would number of positive Google reviews. Make sure you and your team have a place to store these key metrics, whether that be a google spreadsheet or a project management system, like Monday, Asana or Liquid Planner.

Brainstorm time! Sit down with your content development team and ask the following questions:

  • What is the theme for the year? Is there more than one theme?
  • If more than one theme, what are the 3 - 4 pillars?
  • What are the goals for each pillar?
  • How and where can those goals be measured and tracked?

Step 2: Create Your Target Audience

The next step is to think about your audience. Creating a content marketing plan without establishing your target audience is ineffectual and powerless. Without it, you may be targeting the wrong people or even marketing into the void. It’s crucial to create your customer avatar, highlighting their pain points, desires, demographics and locations. A coffee shop’s customer avatar may look like a busy college student, needing a quiet space and energy to get their work done. It’s important to curate an audience to include this avatar, ensuring content is utilized to its potential.

Brainstorm time! Sit down with your content development team and ask the following questions:

  • Who is my ideal audience?
  • What is the demographics and interests of our audience?
  • What problems can we solve for our audience?
  • What content do they want to see?
  • What is our audience searching for online?
  • What platforms are they on? (This is a good one to narrow down so you know where to push your content to)

Step 3: Brainstorm Your Content and Build Editorial Calendar

Now that you have established your theme, goals, how to measure your goals, and your ideal audience, it's time to start brainstorming content ideas and building your editorial calendar. There’s a vast amount of content types to create such as videos, webinars, blogs, and social media posts The list is endless and always growing.

A coffee shop may want to consider creating an Instagram Reel series, showing customers a “behind the scenes” on how they make each drink. They may want to focus their time on going live on Instagram to show customers in real time what’s going on. Or maybe they want to start a podcast all about coffee and different types of brewing methods! Again, the list is endless and alway growing. Don’t be afraid to get creative. This is the bones of the task!

Brainstorm time! Sit down with your content development team and ask the following questions:

  • What social channels do you publish your content to?
  • How often should blogs be posted and promoted?
  • What keywords do you want to rank for?
  • What design tool are you using to create your content?
  • What problems can we solve for our audience?
  • What content do they want to see?

Next Steps

Now that you have the content marketing planning tools and checklist, it’s time to dive in and get the ideas and brainstorming flowing.

If you still don’t know where to start, don’t fret! Contact the professionals at Tytanium Ideas. Our team of marketing strategists are more than happy to sit down with you to create your goals and direction for the new year. With proven results, we know how to get your content rolling.