How to Execute a Content Strategy
We know we need a content strategy and we've got some tips on creating one, but how do we execute a content strategy and actually put it into practice? Where do we put the content information on our calendars?
It's easy to make notes on a calendar, but it's not so easy putting it into practice. Straying from the norm can add stress and overwhelm. It's something different, we're not used to doing it, and we've gotten into a decent routine with our normal activities so we're reluctant to add anything else to the mix.
But really, a content strategy will help you stay focused on your blog and marketing schedule. It will give you a sense of direction for your blog and other materials, give your blog some cohesion, and keep you on track of your goals.
So, how do you execute a content strategy?
One of the most effective ways for staying on schedule with your blog and putting a content strategy into practice is by getting the writing done ahead of time. Instead of scrambling to get the post written, you're focusing your efforts on maximizing your productivity. Waiting until the last minute to write your articles can create a block for you, prolonging the process and adding more stress.
So, save yourself some headache and stress and work on writing regularly and ahead of schedule.
Now, let's get to the calendar.
You've noted important dates on your calendar and you've figured out the topics you're going to discuss over the next couple of months. Did you drill them down into smaller topics?
The execution of a content strategy greatly depends on how often you're going to post a new article.
If your blog schedule is once or twice per week, you could easily write about the same general topic for one month. If blogging more frequently, you might consider discussing one general topic per week. It will depend on the content, of course, and how much you want to talk about it.
Plan out your posts.
On your calendar, write down each mini topic on the day you plan to publish the post. If you're talking about building a great garden, determine your mini topics like we discussed in last week's article. Maybe for two weeks, you can talk about the preparation process. Then another week can be devoted to watering and upkeep. The next week, you could talk about pest types and remedies.
For each article, create a brief outline. This will help the writing process go smoothly, prevent delays, and keep you on track. If you do it now before you start writing your articles, you can give yourself some flexibility throughout the week. Your calendar and content strategy don't have to be written in stone. Maybe you had planned on publishing a post about aphids next Tuesday, but when you reviewed your list of ideas, another topic stood out to you more.
Treat your blog like a training course. There is a lot to learn about any topic, and depending on your industry or niche, there could be frequent changes (think social media marketing best practices) or new tools (i.e., computer software and cell phone apps) to discuss on your blog. Keep in mind that some readers will want to become do-it-yourself experts and others just want to know that you know what you're talking about before they hire you.
The key here is to stay consistent. Make it a priority to get the work done and stay on track.
Top Photo Credit: SEP Blog