In a case of life imitating art, the owners of baby-gift website Baby Elephant became parents. Keeping their business afloat and in the public eye was no small challenge. Yet they managed to keep growing and marketing the business, even getting an interview slot on The Sunday Business Post. How did they do it? With a content plan.
A content plan is similar to a marketing plan, but it focuses exclusively on how you can sell your business through words. Before you can market your business, you need to define your core message and what makes it different. A content plan helps you to do that.
The ingredients for your content plan include:
- Angle – the hook that draws people to your business.
- Goals – what your business hopes to achieve for your customers.
- Services – define precisely what your services offer, the common thread between them and what they achieve for your customers.
- Customer benefits – how your business solves their problems, how they will feel after they have bought from you, how it enhances their lives.
- Tagline – a catchy slogan that captures the essence of your business in one line. Don’t worry if you can’t think of one; some businesses lend themselves more to taglines than others.
- Types of content – identify the types of content that are most likely to capture your customers. If it’s your website that’s most popular, concentrate your efforts there. Or it may be a brochure or email.
- Media plan – Identify the publications and programmes that are relevant to your business and that your customers subscribe to.
- Social media plan – Similar to the media plan, identify the social media platforms where your customers are most present and plan the content that’s likely to engage them.
And most importantly of all:
- Deadlines. Commit yourself to a plan of action which will help you release your content consistently and regularly to your customers, whether it’s a press release once a month, or a newsletter every Thursday.
There’s no denying that a good content plan takes time. So why should you create one?
- It actually saves you time. It speeds up the process of creating content, because you already have a basic framework for generating ideas.
- Because you’ve already gathered your thoughts, it’s easier to produce content even when you’re busy.
- If you’re asked about your business at a networking event, you’ll be able to do your business justice because you’ll have put thought into what makes it stand out.
- You are the best person to market your business. And the content plan gives you the power to do that.
- It gives the edge to your business. Not many businesses have tapped into the power of selling themselves through words. Your content plan will help you stand out from the crowd.