Content Marketing Series: Start with Strategic Goals & Your Audience
Getting started in content marketing can seem daunting when looking at the big picture and the final result. However, this post focuses on how you can get started by setting marketing-centric goals for your content marketing strategy.
What is a strategic goal?
Strategic goals are outcomes that are meaningful to you and your business. In other words, they relate to the product, service, or expertise that you can provide to your audience and benefit your overall business goals.
In starting to craft your goals, it is helpful to refer to your mission and values. For more information on how to create your individual or business mission statement and values, follow this link to my post Congruence: Your Brand, Mission, and Values.
Marketing-centric goals that I have set for my own content are:
Earning brand awareness
Providing help and education
Drive more traffic to my website
Establishing thought leadership
These goals may or may not line up to your own content creation goals but starting with your values and your mission is a good place to start to identify your strategic goals.
Ongoing vs. Campaign Goals
Additionally, your strategic goals can be ongoing or campaign goals. Ongoing goals are those that involve long-term activities such as maintaining a blog. Ongoing goals are goals that you set out to achieve on a regular basis. Campaign goals, on the other hand, are time-sensitive activities that have a beginning and end in sight.
Defining your Audience
When defining the audience for your content, you do not want to go to broad as you risk creating content that is not engaging enough. You won't catch a thing in a net with large holes.
To define your audience, you want to identify 4 key dimensions of the type of reader or audience member that you want to reach:
Once you have identified values for each of these dimensions, you can create a few personas that would each make up a segment of your audience.
For example, one of my audience personas is as follows:
demographic: The rising first-gen college senior
motivations: preparing to transition into their careers
challenges: needs help finding resources or attaining career guidance
psychology/mindset: eager and motivated
As I evolve in my own career, my audience will also evolve to include other personas. So, too, will your audience evolve.