There are many times when presenting a solid Content Strategy to our clients that some confusion sets in when they don’t find the details on the exact direction for writing a post, or insight into how many followers they will gain on a particular channel. Yes, social media is a huge part of the efforts, but it is important to look at them separately.
Let’s start at the very beginning
Every objective of a content strategy varies depending on how sophisticated the client is in its digital marketing efforts. A content strategy dives into the creation, publication and governance for maintaining content across the organization, while also determining how to best market the content that attracts the target in every stage of the funnel. Most organizations may be creating content but don’t have a content strategy that defines a brand’s business goals, measures of success, or ROI to market the content. We need to start at the very beginning. A content strategy stands alone outside of a social media strategy, but the two have to work together to have the most impact.
Let’s imagine for a moment that social media doesn’t exist- no Facebook, no Pinterest, no LinkedIn. A content strategy would still exist and add value to the business. We would simply have to market content the old school way- through postcards, email, RSS feed subscriptions, onsite announcements, good ole’ word of mouth, and search engines. So without any consideration of social media channels, the content being recommended needs to correctly position your brand, increase your authority and ultimately increase engagement.
Now, lets come back to the world we live in today where social media exists; social media is the new “word-of-mouth.” The great thing about social media is that it’s measurable. Therefore, it makes a great digital content “distribution” channel. From a content perspective, social media channels are a part of the strategy simply to recommend digital distribution.
Think of how Amazon uses UPS or FedEx. Amazon needn’t do a business analysis of each carrier before using it to distribute products. It simply begins the relationship and monitors it as things progress. It’s Amazon’s job to create or obtain products people want. It’s the carrier’s job to get those products to those people. That’s the same relationship that a publisher of content has with a social media channel.
In a content strategy we are not focusing on how to engage your audience in each of your channels; we are focusing on the intent of the user’s search, their interests, and the topics that will most resonate with them at each funnel stage and how we will develop and market that content with ROI. We want to develop content that resonates with more people making each piece have a high social value.
To increase the effectiveness of this content, however, its very important a separate social media “engagement” strategy is developed allowing the brand to expand their social efforts beyond content distribution, thus allowing content to augment relationship-building and engagement efforts.
To Sum it Up
So, like Amazon we need to create or curate great products (content). And like FedEx, we need to deliver it to those who want it. We then need a great social media engagement strategy to augment our distribution efforts. Combining these two separate strategic initiatives will significantly enhance the effectiveness of both. On Amazon, “Content Strategy” and “Social Media Strategy” would be found in the “Better Together” section!
Want to learn more about producing great content for your audience? Download a free copy of our Content Marketing 101 eBook!