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How to build a smarter content marketing strategy

Us B2B marketers have been busy bees! 70% have said they're creating more content than they did a year ago. But when only 32% of B2B marketers currently consider their content marketing to be “effective”, few are seeing the desired results they expected.

But how can you drive those desired results if you're not aligning your content goals with your key business initiatives? According to the Content Marketing Institute, only 35% of all marketers are currently documenting their content marketing strategy at all.

So hold on busy-bee marketer! Get practical with your planning and follow these tips to build a kick-ass strategy for 2015. 

1 – Forget demographics, it’s time to get personal

Effective content is all about understanding your audience on a personal, as well as professional, level. By defining, segmenting and targeting your content strategy by buyer persona, rather than demographic, you’ll make your content ultra-relevant and show a more personalised approach too.

Docusign produces a huge range of content all aimed at specific buyer personas and audiences. The results speak for themselves - they shortened their sales cycle and hit 127% of target within first half of the year.

2 – Build content from challenges

Once you have defined your persona’s, build out a matrix of ‘pain points’ for your buyer personas at different stages of the buying cycle – what niggles at them? What challenges are they facing?  

Turn these challenges into your opportunities by planning and producing content that offers a solution, before your audience even realises they need it. You’ll become the go-to source for sound advice and will be well on your way to thought-leader level.

3 – Turn key industry moments into timely & relevant content

Whether it’s KitKat’s version of the iPhone 6 #bendgate controversy, or even the tube strikes earlier this year– our B2C cousins have made the most of every newsworthy opportunity.

You won’t need fingers poised on your keyboard for the next newsworthy event though. Be prepared by setting reminders for key dates across your industry calendar year, and turn these big moments into timely and relevant content.

4 – Plan at campaign, then asset level

When planning, look at the bigger picture by defining what journey you want to take your audience on. By thinking at a campaign level, before asset level, you can plan the content assets that will support the campaign journey.

Instead of producing content with no defined purpose, you’ll lead your audience towards a pre-defined end goal. It’ll help keep your content relevant and by encouraging your audience to return for the next step, you’ll build a following too!

5 – Know how you will measure success

Build your content objectives, goals and metrics into your strategy plan and define how you will measure before you launch. Include your soft metrics (downloads, clicks) and hard metrics (enquiries, link building) that will measure success according to your strategy objectives, and know the tools/methods you will use to measure them, before you get started.

Follow these top practical tips to build an effective content marketing strategy in 2015, deliver world-class ROI and put your brand at the forefront of thought-leadership.

Bring your smart content strategy to life – Download the Ultimate Content Marketing Planner here.

How would you build a smart content marketing strategy for 2015? Tweet us with your top practical tips @LeadForensics using #UltimateContent.

This blog was originally posted on the Lead Forensics website. Read the original article here.