Use this Content Strategy Business Startup template to avoid the heavy lifting on your annual content strategy document.
You don’t need a ridiculous 50 slide PPT, but you do need a document that your team can champion around. Grabbing this one from experts experienced in agile marketing strategies will save you valuable time. Work smarter, not harder.
You can personalize this plan to your specific niche industry. It will help you clearly outline your business objectives with tactics and initiatives that you make sense to execute for each audience. This strategic and “living” document will be helpful to keep your team in synch and can be updated as you test and learn what content is working.
Combine with the unfunnel Business Startup Annual Plan Excel Tracker to make sure your strategy is on target and keep track of your conversions.
In this document you will find the following sections:
Personas & Demographics
Main initiatives & Gap Analysis
Core Business Strategy
Risk Taking & Content Mix
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2015 Content Strategy Business Startup Template V.1 Updated 2/15 INTRODUCTION Goals: New content developed will support the following 2015 business goals and objectives. [customize goals below based on your new business niche and target audiences) 1.Goal 1 (build referral partnerships): Develop a content calendar derived from the needs of each audience, distributed across all online channels (email, social, blogs, website, search). Partner agreement will be developed to incentivize business/revenue growth on both sides. Targeted integrated channel marketing campaigns will be developed to convert potential partner audiences. 2.Goal 2 (grow customer base): Some communication will be subscription based and triggered based on type of audience and preferred channels. Email and landing pages with lead gen components (webinars, hangouts, whitepapers, infographics, training videos) and cultivation plans will be developed to capture qualified leads from specific demographics and personas. 3.Goal 3 (business/product): New content will be developed around our value proposition and new service offerings (value, testimonials, pricing, performance and competitive benchmarks). 4.Goal 4 (brand awareness): An underlying brand awareness campaign will run throughout the whole year with the primary goal of communicating the brand message, value to the audience and cultivation of brand loyalists. [customize channel mix based on paid media budget, potential partnerships and forecast of resources) Page 1 of 8 Copyright 2014, unfunnel.com, LLC
Channel Mix: For cost efficiency, we will prioritize utilizing earned media channels (partner referrals, social media, news, blogs, PR outreach and organic search) over paid media channels. There will be significant outreach to build influencer, partner and media lists to assist us in sharing our communications. [customize based on your company culture and developing an authentic voice that can speak across multiple audiences) Personality/Voice: Instead of content that is just accurate and safe, we will show of our brand “personality.” We will be moving to a less formal, but still professional, voice and use authentic, user-generated images to evoke a more emotional connection with our audience. We will create a blogging network that is professional-focused and entices people to subscribe to receive automated communications. Instead of just sharing content posted by news outlets and other authors, we will generate new content and start conversations about pain points in the industry. [Add specific data here and competitive research that supports you decisions above) Background Research: The following research was used to identify the initial plan. We will continue to learn and optimize our strategy as we gain new data and behavior insights from our audiences and stakeholders. • •Web Analytics: Currently the pages on our site that get most traffic are XXX. This indicates that XXX. • •Competitive Analysis: The leaders in our niche are XXX. From them we learned XXX and that there is a significant gap and opportunity in XXX. • •Personas and Demographics: We have XXX personas that we will use for developing targeted messaging. It will be an ongoing effort to validate and expand on this initial segmentation. We will use online tools to help segment traffic and deliver the right message, at the right time, in the right channel. a.Persona 1 – Details here b.Persona 2 – Details here c.Persona 3 – Details here d.Persona 3 – Details here During the last year, our website traffic was made up of XX% females and XX% males with XX% visitors age XXX (Source: XXX Date range: XXX) Our Facebook audience of XXX has XX% women and XX% men, this is XXX compared to people that have like our pages. Page 2 of 8 Copyright 2015, Unfunnel.com LLC.
• •Main initiatives and gap analysis: The content plan supports major 2015 business initiatives. The following are areas where we need to supplement resources: a.Initiative name 1: XXX hours in XX months. Skillset needed: b.Initiative name 2: XXX hours in XX months. Skillset needed: c.Initiative name 3: XXX hours in XX months. Skillset needed: Core Business Strategy: [Company Name] will be at the forefront of cutting edge [niche] strategies and work towards a collaborative efforts with industry leaders by incentivizing partnerships, providing timely and targeted resources that are relevant, add value and reflect a community expertise and thought leadership. Risk Taking and Content Mix: In order increase engagement it is essential that we test new, high risk content to learn and have the potential for a long-term bigger payoff. We want to illicit user generated and PR content in an effective way to supplement in-house production of new, engaging “shareable” content. The following is the ratio we will use for content development: [Edit data in the chart to adjust amount of each content based on goals & objectives) Products & Services Brand Messaging 15% 34% 10% New Engaging "Shareable" Content 7% User Submitted Content (stories, photos etc.) 19% 15% Recycled News & Partner Content Testimonials and Case Studies Themes: To reach each audience and continue to engage our existing audience, we will focus on the following themes to make sure content has an overall cohesive feel during each quarter and reason for content generation. [Add specific theme information here for each quarter) Holiday/Season/Program Driven Q1 – XX Page 3 of 8 Copyright 2015, Unfunnel.com LLC.
Q2 – XX Q3 – XX Q4 – XX DISTRIBUTION CHANNELS Website: When people visit the website we want them to “experience” our brand, value proposition, services and partner programs. It will have a feel of high function, trust and be a master archive for people to quickly find in-depth information and resources. All promotional and content strategy efforts drive traffic to website landing “squeeze” pages for specific action or conversion. • •Tone/Brand Voice – more authentic voice, “progress not perfection.” • •Imagery & media – investment in resources, apps, storytelling, interactive elements and video • •Blog – highly engaging content, meant to attract attention, provoke thought and capture leads • •Store – secure area where visitors can purchase products and have access to member-only information • •Member profiles – provide the opportunity for members to personalize their page within the network and connect with others in their industry • •Forms – capture information about site visitor’s needs and contact information • •Team – learn more about the people behind the brand that makes it unique BLOG: Content generated to add value to each audiences. All content should be framed on how this content impacts their lives and the tools & solutions that will help them. Blog articles link to multiple resources about that topic and offer opinions to start meaningful conversations. Comments, sharing and subscribing is encouraged as the main CTAs. Navigation: MAIN: About Us (links to website) Our Partners (logo soup), Contact Us (links to form) SUB: Search, Social Feeds, Featured Promo banners - testimonials, specials and products [Add specific niche information here and user-centric names for each category) Proposed Categories and keyword tagging: Page 4 of 8 Copyright 2015, Unfunnel.com LLC.
Category 1: Name Tags: XXX EXAMPLE POST TITLE: XXX •TOPICS: oList issues in the media related to industry and SEO keyword opportunities Category 2: Name Tags: XXX EXAMPLE POST TITLE: XXX •TOPICS: List issues in the media related to industry and SEO keyword opportunities Category 3: Name Tags: XXX EXAMPLE POST TITLE: XXX •TOPICS: List issues in the media related to industry and SEO keyword opportunities Category 4: Name Tags: XXX EXAMPLE POST TITLE: XXX •TOPICS: List issues in the media related to industry and SEO keyword opportunities Email Marketing: There will be 4 different ways we use the email channel for marketing and communications. 1.Monthly Marketing eNewsletters – thiswill be very marketing driven and repurpose the top content from the blogs and website from the past month including upcoming events,new resource downloads, stories on the blog and a marketing push to business objectives that need visibility. One main content template will be built with variations on images and specific information for member-only viewing. This eblast will reinforce brand messaging. Frequency of 1 per month. 2.Blog and RSS subscription – this is an opt-in for automated updates when new articles are posted. Frequency – weekly. 3.eCommerce Transactional – triggered messages after a product is purchased with upsell on similar products and resources. 4.Drip/Triggered Campaigns – set up to specifically nurture the new email lead that signs up to learn more about your products. Based on the type of Page 5 of 8 Copyright 2015, Unfunnel.com LLC.
information they select, they receive an automated series of information about services and value proposition. This is mainly a short snippets of content that link to important landing pages on the website. Frequency – based on business rules but starts immediately after subscribing and includes a series of 3-5 emails. [Add specific information about content for each audience and frequency, refer to unfunnel tactical content strategy Excel templates) Audience Streams and Business Rules: •Audience 1 •Audience 2 •Audience 3 •Audience 4 Social Media Networks: Social will be used to post teasers of content with a link to push traffic to the blog for business conversions and list building. The content in each network will depend based on the different audiences below. The social post calendar will mirror the blog publishing calendar with a few additional posts in Twitter to increase posting frequency on news. •Facebook - stories and engaging news examples •Twitter - industry and partner news •LinkedIn – lead gen, professional networking & collaboration •Google+ - technology focused information, video live hangouts •Pinterest - branded photos and collective sharing of web images/tips for industry niche •YouTube - videos for storytelling, testimonials and product teasers •SlideShare – presentations, educational, advice, branded resources and whitepapers Online Advertising: Paid advertising will be used during annual holiday year-end campaigns. The following are the areas to invest in for testing and cost efficiency: •Paid Search (Google and Yahoo/Bing) •Mobile specific search ads •Paid social – promoted tweets, Facebook and YouTube videos •YouTube pre-roll ads and ad overlays •Re-targeting display banners for site and search Page 6 of 8 Copyright 2015, Unfunnel.com LLC.
•Mobile app banners (partners and targeted local companies & industries) •News media outlets Search Engine Optimization: To support organic and paid search results, the following is a “snapshot” of some of the current keywords that match our site content. The volume is based on the date range XXX and gives us a direction on trends and for the content that will capitalize on top search queries. As new products are released, new ads will be created with new keywords and content. These keywords should be used in: •Naming of the HTML page, separated by hyphens •XML site maps and robot.txt files •ALT tags of images •File names of images, separated by hyphens •In the tags of each blog post as applicable •In the meta description of the page for social sharing Keywords but below 1st page bid XXX Good quality but low traffic XXX High impressions/high CTR XXX Testing Ideas High impressions/low CTR XXX Low Quality Score XXX XXX Top Landing Pages for Search Ads: •[LIST OF URLS GO HERE] Mobile SMS: In website forms there will be a field to start acquiring mobile numbers for direct alerts and messaging. This strategy is dependent on a mobile platform to support list building and distribution. Offline: Limited, but will include: •Sales Materials •Financial Report •Videos and TV spots (can also be used online) •Presentations (standard branded template(s)) •Collateral Leave-Behinds for Event Support Page 7 of 8 Copyright 2015, Unfunnel.com LLC.
PROMOTION: Not all content assets will be promoted the same. The amount of promotional tactics deployed will depend on the business value of the asset. Low Priority: organic social post, eNewsletter, website page(s) Medium Priority: plus PR, blog post, Landing page, onsite banners, influencer outreach, internal email High Priority: plus external web banner ads, paid social, search campaign, dedicated email blast, microsite etc., PR plan, creative concepting MEASUREMENT Dashboards: In order to measure the success of content, there are key performance indicators (KPIs) and metrics that we will tracked monthly to help optimize messaging and effectiveness of the strategies. •Bounce Rate •Visits/Page Views •Time on Page •Social Shares •Downloads •New email acquisition •Website referrals •Email open rates •New social subscribers •Keyword search queries (on and offsite) •Video views and interactions •Search and Banner ad clicks •Product eCommerce Conversions Page 8 of 8 Copyright 2015, Unfunnel.com LLC.