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Content Planning: The Roadmap to Strategic Content

Content planning is the process of developing a strategic plan for the content you publish. This includes identifying what content will be created, on what platform it will be published, when it will be published, and how it will be presented. 

Depending on the size of your team, your content plan will also include who is in charge of creating and managing this content, as well as measuring the content’s performance and effectiveness in reaching its pre-determined goal.

Creating a content plan will ensure your messaging remains consistent across various channels and platforms, despite who’s working on your content creation.

Now, before diving into how to plan your content, keep in mind that there isn’t one specific right way to do this. The roadmap I follow may be completely different than your own content roadmap, so feel free to adapt according to your needs.

Foundational Steps For Developing Your Content Strategy 

  1. Define your audience.
    • Before any content is created, ensure you can answer the following questions. Who is your target audience? What are their needs and wants? What topics are they interested in? Once you know who you’re trying to reach, you can move on to ideation and develop an editorial calendar that reflects these interests.
  2. Identify your key messaging points.
    • What are the main themes or messages that you want to communicate through your content? This will help you determine what topics to write about and which formats (e.g., video, infographics) will best communicate those messages to your target audience.
  3. Choose the right tools and technologies.
    • What content management systems (CMS), social media platforms, photo editing software, etc. will best enable you to create and publish the content that you need? Have these systems in place and decisions made prior to publishing.
  4. Plan your publishing schedule.
    • How often will you release new content? When will it be released? What format will it take (e.g., text, photo, video)? Consistency is key. Your audience will start to expect your content, so be sure to set a minimal viable publishing schedule. 
  5. Determine your key metrics.
    • What results do you want to achieve from your content? Are you looking for your target audience to engage with your published content? Do you want them to share it on social media? Do you want your website traffic to increase? Are you looking for sales and conversions? Each piece of content will need its own pre-determined KPI as it’s the only way to truly measure your content’s success. 

How To Develop A Content Strategy That Works For Your Business

With the aforementioned foundational steps in mind, it’s time to create a content strategy that specifically works for your business.

To begin this process, you’ll have to start by developing a plan for how you want your content to look and feel. 

You’ve established your target audience or ideal customer, so you already know what they want, need, and desire.  This information will help to determine the length and depth of the content you’re going to create. 

Using your market research, you’ll also learn what platforms your ideal customer is using and how they prefer to consume content (audibly, visually, etc.) to ensure the content you create will be not only seen but also sufficiently digested. 

Once you have a general idea of what you’re producing, it’s time to develop a specific plan for each piece of content. This will include things like who is going to write it, when it’s going to be released, what questions or topics will be covered, and which platforms are best suited for distribution.

In the end, your content strategy should lead to increased engagement with your target audience as well as increased traffic and sales. However, it’s up to you to decide which pieces of content will provide each specific desired result.

New to creating content for your business? Grab a copy of my free content creation planning kit here.