7 fundamentals of a great content marketing program

fundamentals great content program

fundamentals great content program

A great content marketing program can no longer be maintained with good writing alone.

Content shock has created a huge amount of content that is responding to demand. Content marketers must work harder than ever to stay ahead of the competition or risk starving to death while a more savvy competitor eats their lunch.

To retain competitors or to outdo the competition, organizations sometimes overlook the fundamentals of a great content marketing program and focus instead on new best practices. and growth tricks. After all, they don’t want to wait for results. They want them now!

While the latest growth hack sounds like the future of content marketing, it’s usually not short-term. long-term troubleshooting. Organizations stick to an attack or a shortcut, only to find their content marketing program shrunken months later. It’s something we’ve seen many times.

Here are just a few signs that a content marketing program is in trouble:

  • Content marketers struggle to prove the business value of their efforts
  • No one understands how new visitors move down the marketing funnel into conversions
  • The executive team is considering reallocating the content marketing budget
  • User engagement for content is very poor

All of these signs lead to a common cause: the fundamentals of the wrong content marketing program .

Like any activity or profession, understanding the fundamentals is essential to success. If the basic fundamentals of your content marketing program don’t apply, there’s very little chance you’ll hit the road to success.

These are the seven fundamentals essential for any successful content marketing program.

first . Understand Your Business Goals

You are not creating a content marketing program for fun. You are creating it to fulfill a business goal.

The first basic of a great content marketing program is identifying the business goals you want your program to achieve.

These goals may include:

  • Brand health
  • Marketing Optimization
  • Generate revenue
  • Operational efficiency
  • Customer experience
  • Renew

Once you’ve identified the business goals of your content marketing effort, you need to buy back from the c-suite to make it a reality.

2. Get the right to buy from the moderator

Your operators hold the key to the resources your content marketing program needs. If you can’t get your CEO’s buyout and keep it for years, your program is toast.

To get executive buy-in, focus on these six points:

  1. Why does your organization need content marketing — what’s more compelling than other advertising/communication mediums?
  2. Don’t lead by advertising when talking to executives. Your executives might love to see nice fake models, but those models don’t sell a show.
  3. Instead of advertising, lead by dollars and cents. This is the language of the c-suite.
  4. Align the program with business goals. How will the program be better than other programs at achieving specific goals?
  5. Indicate how you will measure the strategy (this will be discussed in the fifth basic section.)
  6. Give the budget and expected profit that the c-suite will see as a result of the program. If you can’t demonstrate this, your content marketing budget will quickly be reallocated to possible projects.

3. Understand the audience’s difficult points

The goal of content is to solve an audience’s problem, not to serve as an advertisement for products and services.

To understand your audience’s pain points, you need to put yourself in the audience’s shoes. What keeps them up at night? What are they worried about? What content can you provide that makes their lives easier?

solve pain points

Pain spots come in all shapes and sizes. The sore spot can be an annoyance, like gnawing on a screen in a window. Or a pain point can be significant, such as understanding how best to care for a parent who needs extra care. Both of these examples can use content to ease those pain points—perhaps a homemade gnat trap for the first example, and an article detailing all the essentials someone might need. should have so that their parents get the best care possible.

Smart content Use large amounts of data to determine the tough spots your audience has on your website and your competitors’ sites and industry publications. This approach goes hand in hand with qualitative feedback, such as a focus group, to identify the real pain points your audience has.

Other What is essential in identifying pain points is understanding the intent of the user as they search for a solution.

If someone is looking to know the answer to something, don’t hit them in the head with calls to action to buy something. If they’re looking to take an action, like getting help, you should be more aggressive in getting them to take the next step with you.

If a user’s hard point is getting somewhere, like a website, or a physical location, make sure your business can be easily found online or in local search.

4. Create a Documented Content Strategy

If your content strategy is in your head, but not on paper, you could be in a lot of trouble.

Less than 40% of content marketers have a written content strategy. As a result, only 35% of content marketers can actually demonstrate the ROI of their content marketing efforts. Click to Tweet

Selling your executives is essential to acquiring and maintaining resources for content marketing. If you can’t come up with a documented content strategy and thus demonstrate the ROI of your content marketing efforts, your budget will quickly be reallocated.

It takes time and effort to create a great content marketing strategy. But it’s essential, as your entire content marketing program depends on it for success.

It also gives your entire content team a single source of truth when creating future content marketing campaigns.

5. Identify methods and metrics to measure

To prove the value of your content marketing program you need to define the methods and metrics you will use before creating a piece of content.

These metrics should tie into the very first basic of content marketing programs: Understanding Your Business Goals.

The metrics you use should be defined in your content marketing strategy, as well as each content marketing campaign.

Companies that delay this step until the end of their campaign will scramble to showcase the success of the campaign. Without a clear measurement set up from the start, they’re just meaningless metrics like total traffic to or social shares instead of metrics that definitely justify the campaign. Content that drives a real business outcome.

This leads to some really awkward conversations with c-suite.

6. Identify the most effective distribution channels

How do your audience get content that helps them solve their problems?

Do they rely solely on search? Then focus on SEO is probably the place to start.

Is your audience primarily on social media? Maybe it’s time to create social-friendly articles to pique their curiosity.

How often do they read a certain industry publication? Perhaps using sponsored content on that publication is a good channel.

Do they want an actual article? Then it might be time to consider printing and shipping a magazine (yes, they’re still here).

Find out where your audience is currently getting solutions to their problems. A lot of times we see organizations jumping into new channels just because they are new. But they’ve never done the research to see if their audience has in channel or not.

It’s easier to get your audience’s attention on their regular channels than trying to get them to join you in your new channel.

7. Create great, user-centric content

That’s right, we’re on a basic 7 out of 7 and now we’re talking about content creation. That’s because the truth that drives the content is the single most important factor in the success of content on a business level.

Writing great, engaging content is essential to any content marketing campaign. That content needs to be user-centric, making your audience the hero of the story.

You don’t write content to talk about you. You are creating content to solve user problems.

You don’t create content to talk about you. You are creating content to solve user problems. Click to post a Tweet

This is one of the biggest mistakes we see from organizations. They think content marketing is simply a way to write long-form ads. Check your organization’s ego at the doorstep.

However, that doesn’t mean you give up trying to entice your audience to take the next step.

Logical next steps, such as offering a free trial, signing up for a newsletter, or downloading something even more valuable in return for an email address, can push your audience further down the line. natural marketing channel.

From there, you can nurture and build trust with them until they’re ready to take the next step with your organization.


Content marketing is hard. There are tons of hacks and shortcuts out there, but without a foundation in the fundamentals, your content marketing program won’t have a solid foundation to grow on.

Hopefully you’re currently practicing all of these fundamentals. But if you don’t, it’s not too late to start.

By Nguyen Manh Cuong

Nguyen Manh Cuong is the author and founder of the nguyendiep blog. With over 14 years of experience in Online Marketing, he now runs a number of successful websites, and occasionally shares his experience & knowledge on this blog.

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