We’re all busy. There’s work and marketing and networking and work and more work. There’s certainly not time to create a content plan for your website.
Content marketing is a powerful way to —
- Attract new clients
- Engage the right ones
- Persuade them that you are the one to help them.
Justin McGill, writing at Hubspot, says, “Content marketing helps businesses prepare and plan for reliable and cost-effective sources of website traffic and new leads.”
The problem is that creating content takes time — time away from your regular work, time away from your face-to-face networking, time away from your ordinary life. Content marketing will bring in enough good work to pay for itself and give you back more of your time. Getting there can be hard work.
I know what it’s like to sit down in front of a blank screen and think, “What will I write about this week?”
Or I get a great idea for something I want to write about, and I post it to my site — where it gets no shares, no comments, no traction. Seems I was just talking to myself.
A content marketing plan will help overcome those problems.
Content Planning Overcomes Lack of Inspiration
It is quite discouraging to sit down to “write something” — and have nothing to write about. The blank page makes you feel like you have nothing to say.
On the other hand, imagine that you sit down to a post that already has —
- A specific topic
- With an outline
- As part of a series of topics clustered around a theme
- With a direction you’ve set that stretches out over weeks or months
In that case, the writing goes much more easily.
It’s not a blank page. All you have to do is —
- Fill in the details of your outline
- Edit it
- Find an image
When you post it in your publication queue, it’s ready to go.
A Content Calendar Defeats Overwhelm
We only have so much time in a day. It’s easy to underestimate the time something will take and end up scrambling to meet commitments.
A structured plan will helped solve that problem. Recognizing that content takes commitment. If you make a realistic commitment to your marketing, you’ll be able to meet your responsibilities and grow your business.
With a content calendar, you know what you need to do and how much time you have to do it.
Be understanding with yourself as you create your content plan. If your website has been dormant for months, then make the time to get your plan operational instead of rushing to launch.
How important is content marketing to your business plan? If it matters, set aside the time it will take to make it happen. Or hire someone to help you. Get the work done well and save your time for your core business.
A Content Plan for Your Website Makes Your Marketing More Effective
Before I had a content plan, I would write about what I felt like writing about. When my work got no shares, no comments, and no interest, I realized I was writing for myself, not for my clients. Here is a helpful guide to website content planning.
A web content plan includes some important first steps:
1. Identify your ideal client
If you know your ideal client or prospect and what they need to know, you can use your web content to speak their language, to build their trust, and to prepare them to work with you.
You’ll find out this information through research.
- Talk to clients and prospects
- Explore where they hang out on the web
- Do keyword research to find out what they’re asking Google.
Although it’s time-consuming, your research creates a solid foundation for your web copy.
2. Decide what you want your site to accomplish
You have goals for yourself and your business. How will your website get you there?
If you understand what your site can do, you can discover technologies and tools to get it done faster and easier. Some tools are free. Some are quite pricey. And some you can find at discounts (I’m looking at you, AppSumo.)
Being clear on your goals will help you generate great content, connect with your ideal clients, and make your marketing more effective.
3. Decide what you choose to invest in content marketing
You choose to spend time or money on your web marketing. How much of each depends on your budget, strengths, and interests. The amounts and proportions will differ from one business owner to another. They will also change over time.
Creating a content plan for your website, as part of your overall marketing plan, will help you establish priorities and see opportunities. As you track results, you can tweak your methods for better returns on investment.
Why Bother to Develop a Content Plan for Your Website?
Creating your content plan and calendar is an investment. But it will more than pay for itself in clarity, efficiency, and effectiveness.
Are you ready to start building a content plan for your website, but don’t know where to start? Give me a call at (503) 765-6981. Take advantage of my free, no-pressure, half-hour strategy session to help you get started.