Cheat Sheet

Content Marketing For Dummies

From Content Marketing For Dummies by Susan Gunelius

Content marketing encompasses all forms of content that directly or indirectly promote a business, brand, product, or service. Read on to find online sites and tools for content marketing, such as blogging sites, social networks, and sites for sharing audio, video, and images. If you’re just starting your content marketing efforts, be sure to check out the Content Marketing Strategy Worksheet and Content Marketing Strategy Template.

Useful Websites for Content Marketing

The following websites are useful for your content marketing efforts. The list is divided into sites for blogging and microblogging, social networking, social bookmarking, sharing audio and video, and sharing images.

Blogging applications and microblogging tools:

Social networking sites:

Social bookmarking sites:

Audio and video sites:

Image sites:

Content Marketing Strategy Worksheet

Use this Content Marketing Strategy Worksheet to capture all the information about your industry, competitors, business, products, services, brand, consumers, budget, and goals. A completed worksheet helps you look objectively at where your business is and where you want it to go. You use the data from your Content Marketing Strategy Worksheet to complete the Content Marketing Strategy Template.

I. Current Business Environment Analysis

Describe the current micro- and macro-environments of your industry and business.

II. Brand Promise and Positioning Statements

Describe your brand’s reason for existing and the value it brings to consumers. Define your brand’s position relative to competitors.

III. Competitor Analysis

List your competitors, their products, their online destinations, and their competitive advantages and disadvantages. Describe what sets you apart from the competition.

IV. Customer Analysis

Describe your best customer (target audience) and segment your customers into unique groups that buy from you for different reasons. Define where your audience spends time online. Describe what is most important to your customers when they choose products like yours, and describe what you can deliver to customers that meets those wants and needs.

V. Budget and Resources

Define how much money you have to spend over the next 12 months on content marketing efforts. Define the labor and time you have available to dedicate to content marketing on a daily basis.

VI. Goals

Define the top three things you want to accomplish in the next 12 months.

Content Marketing Strategy Template

Use the data from your Content Marketing Strategy Worksheet to complete the Content Marketing Strategy Template. This template can help you put your strategy into a clear and concise form that you can use to develop specific tactics and tweak as necessary to ensure that the content marketing plan you create is performing optimally.

I. Executive Summary

Provide an overview of your content marketing strategy as a promotional initiative for the next 12 months.

II. Objectives

State specific goals for the next 12 months that you plan to achieve through content marketing. Your content marketing tactics should help you meet these specific goals.

III. Customer Hangouts

List the specific URLs for online destinations where your target audience spends time and actively engages. These are the primary places you’ll interact with this audience and listen to their conversations as part of your content marketing tactics.

IV. Competitor Content Offerings

List the specific URLs where your competitors publish content. You’ll need to monitor these places to find opportunities that will lead to content marketing tactics.

V. Influencers

List the specific names and URLs for online influencers who have your target audience’s ear and whose radar screens you need to be on as part of your content marketing plan.

VI. Content Forms

Define the types of content you intend to create as part of your content marketing plan — long, short, or conversational. Determine how often you can commit to publishing each form of content.

VII. Branded Destinations

Define where your core branded online destination will be and what other branded online destinations you’ll create as publishing points for your content marketing tactics.

VIII. Primary Messages and Value-Add

Define your main brand messages and the value you bring to the online conversation through your content, which will be the cornerstone of your content for the next 12 months.

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