“Content is King”
As marketers, we have been hearing this statement for a few years now. And in my mind, there is no question about it, when it comes to social media: content is KING. But this is the moment when I ask myself what is this King without a strategy? And the answer is: nothing.
As everything in the marketing, communications and social media world, all of our efforts will go nowhere if we don’t follow a clear strategy and we cannot measure the performance of our actions. Another important thing to keep in mind when it comes to content strategy, is that it’s not the same for everyone, your strategy will not only vary depending your objectives but also the type if the organization and your current and desired audience.
“Content strategy is the way you go about telling your story as well as creating and publishing information on your website or through other related digital media.”
It’s clear, content strategy is key when it comes to the success of our social media platforms and its implementation it doesn’t matter if you are a business, non-profit organization or even a government agency. All of these organizations need a content strategy, however, there are some key differences between each other that I would like to discuss now.
In terms of nonprofits profit organizations, a good content strategy will help you gain an emotional and meaningful connection with your audience that will hopefully turn into actions. Just because we are not talking about sales and market share doesn’t mean that we can’t have hard measures that will indicate the performance of our content. Our content, generally should be always meant to drive our audience to action; this could be a volunteering or donating. We need to remember that content strategy is all about storytelling so let’s use those stories that are happening around our organization, success stories, living conditions of one part of the population, etc. To engage our audience, raise awareness and create empathy towards our cause.
For businesses, don’t limit yourself. Your content doesn’t always have to be boring, even thought you might feel that your industry is. Content becomes boring and even wrong when you don’t place it in the right context. You should think in different, fun and engaging ways that you can talk about things that are happening regarding your category or industry.
Remember, nobody wants to listen to a monologue, especially in social media platforms. If your brand is always saying ME, ME, ME! Eventually, your audience will be bored. Keep in mind when you know your audience you will create content that is more suited to them and to their interests. Therefore, your audience most likely will react positively and will share the content in their network. For example, if we talk about a business that sales snow shovels, people don’t want a 800 word article about the type of shovels you carry in your brand, but if you write a compelling article about 10 ways to survive the winter and obviously this includes owning a snow shovel think about how differently your audience will react to that.
It might seem tricky when we are approaching government agencies, especially because their audiences can change dramatically from one agency to another. There is also so much information to cover that they might lose focus on what they want to achieve. Government related information tends to be very complex and overly long, If it is not adapted to their audience, this will prevent them to actually leverage from all that content. Agencies should not aim for thousands of pages with content if they are just lying there without any visitors. Governments should think about what are the needs of the users and work accordingly.
At the end of the day a website, blog and social media networks are useless and a waste of money if we aren’t populating it with the right information and being consistent in each of the platforms that we are present in. So there you have it, three of the most important differences to take into consideration when you are developing a content strategy for private sectors, nonprofit and/or government agencies.
And always remember: Hail to the King!
Why Do Government Websites Need A Content Strategy? (2012) European Commission