I’ve always admired people who could sit down at a computer and crank out creative writing, never really considering it a possible job description for myself. Thanks to online marketing, I’ve been able to bring my skills to bear in a professional capacity and, in the process, discovered a new appreciation for the written word.
If you’re thinking about establishing an online marketing department for your business, but aren’t sure where to begin, this article is for you. We’ll cover everything from strategy to execution, with the goal of helping you achieve your desired results. So, let’s get started.
Find Your Voice
Like any other marketing department, your online marketing department will require the creation of content. The problem is, the content you create will end up being used by your customers as well as your employees. This means you’ll need to find a way to express yourself through your content while maintaining a level of professionalism. Fortunately, this can be easily achieved through effective writing. By constantly researching and updating your knowledge base, you’ll develop the ability to churn out high-quality copy on demand. Above all else, make sure that your writing reflects your brand’s voice and, most importantly, speaks directly to your audience.
To truly succeed in this role, you’ll need to find your voice and tailor it to the specific needs of your brand. To get started, simply take a few minutes to think about the kind of content you plan on creating for your brand. What do you already know about the subject matter? Start by brainstorming and jotting down some ideas. You can also ask coworkers or friends for their opinions or simply consult online resources like dictionaries or thesauruses. Once you’ve got a handful of content ideas, you can set about developing a content strategy, which we’ll get to in just a minute.
Develop a Strategy
Just like any other marketer, you’ll first need to develop a strategy. This is a critical step because, although you may be aware of the need for content, without a clear strategy, you’ll likely create content haphazardly, or at least without much rigor. To start, set a budget and timeline for your content creation effort. Then, break down the overall strategy into component parts and map out the action items needed to achieve your goals. For instance, if one of your objectives is to gain more traction with a certain audience, you may decide to establish a blog for your business. Once the ball is rolling, reviewing and updating your strategy as necessary is a non-stop process. Inevitably, new goals and ideas will present themselves and, in turn, necessitate changes to your original strategy. This is a good thing because it means you’re constantly evolving and adapting to stay relevant and, therefore, successful in your role. However, the downside is that, as a busy marketer, you may not have the time to keep up with all the necessary research and developments in your field. To combat this, you may want to consider establishing a small research team to curate a steady stream of quality content for your project. This team, in turn, could be responsible for creating new content as needed. It’s an efficient system and one that can prove beneficial as you continue to grow and evolve as a marketer.
Plan Your Execution
Now that you’ve got a content strategy in place, you can turn your attention to the matter of actually creating the content. The first step is to sit down with your content creators (writers, journalists, etc.) and work through what you’ve got. Decide which one of your ideas will be the basis of your initial content and flesh out the details, such as the specific words and phrases you’ll use, how you’ll present yourself, and so on. With this kind of planning, you’ll ensure the content is of a high caliber and matches your desired results. Ideally, every piece of content you create should support and further the goals of your business. Consider the types of people who visit your website or social media platforms and how you can speak to them using the content you create. For example, if you run a blog for your business, you may decide to write posts in the voice of a regular mom, who is likely to be your target audience. As a general rule, the simpler the subject matter, the easier it is to write about. This doesn’t mean that you should only write about the most basic topics, but rather that you should look for topics that are easy to understand and articulate. If your goal is to simply establish yourself as an expert in your niche, you may want to consider starting a blog in that niche. In any case, keep your plans close to the chest and make sure everything is written down. Even if you’re not the kind of person who likes to write down every little detail, having everything in black and white will make things much easier to follow.
Use The Right Tools
If you’ve decided to set up a blog for your business, one of the first things you’ll need to do is to find a way to publish your content. This is where a content strategist comes in handy. Your blog host should offer both free and premium blogging platforms, such as WordPress or Shopify, and should be able to provide you with a custom domain name (like yourbusinessblog.com) and a free SSL certificate. The right tool for the job makes everything much easier and, as a result, improves the production value of your blog. When choosing a blogging platform, make sure to go for a free option and, if possible, choose a premium plan that provides you with additional features. The first thing you should do after purchasing the blogging platform is to set up a free blog account. Don’t worry — once you’ve done this, you can simply switch to the paid version when you’re ready to begin publishing content. It’s a painless process and one that’s worth it in the end.
Nowadays, there are numerous tools that can help you with the content creation process. Some of the most popular ones are WordPress, Weebly, and HubSpot. If you’re the kind of person who likes to write, you might find it easier to use a content creation tool that specializes in creating content for websites, such as HubSpot. Alternatively, if you’re looking for a more visual approach, you might prefer an app that can create images directly for your social media accounts. WordPress and Weebly were originally designed for blogging and, therefore, offer a variety of tools and functionalities that can help you along the way. If you’re curious about what kind of content is most popular online or what your competitors are doing, use a tool like Google Analytics to track the demographics and psychographics of your audience. The insights you gather from this data will help you identify the right platform for your project. Keep in mind that, as a marketer, you’ll ultimately be responsible for what content your department produces and, therefore, must ensure that the content is of a high quality. To do this, simply follow the rules of sound content creation and you’ll be on your way to publishing content that will grow your business.