Businesses today are not seeing themselves as just places of trade. They are focusing on becoming brands with a vision that people can relate to. This has not only given a sales boost to many, but has also helped them create loyal customer bases that further aid in marketing. Enter content! Content has always played a very important role in building a brand. Why? The main mode for any brand to communicate with their audience is and always will be content.
What this means is that your brand has to create content for your audience on a regular and consistent basis. This content should be qualitatively appropriate – i.e., right message, engaging, original and appealing. To create such high-quality regular content, the first thing you can do is plan ahead of time This can help in creating a content bank which indirectly gives you time to focus and speed up your content creation process without compromising on quality. Let us explain how!
A. Before content, create a strategy!
1. Do your research: Creating quality content means understanding what quality content is. Any content which conveys your brand message in the most appealing way is sure to help your brand. But, where to start? Look at your competitors and assess the kind of content they are creating and understand how the audience is responding to it. Moreover, you can also refer to content marketing resources online or take consultation from a professional marketing expert or an agency.
2. Start creating a basic strategy: A basic and fool-proof way of creating a strategy is going by the ‘Big rock- Small rock’ approach. This way you identify your brand’s core message i.e., the big rock and then break it down further into smaller content i.e., small rock, for the purpose of promoting and driving back traffic to the main content. To get this right, select the best content formats for your brand, the right and relevant marketing channels, and you have a basic strategy ready.
3. Note your content category: Each brand has a different style of content that appeals their audience. If you’re a fashion brand, you must create content that encircles all aspects of fashion- trends, styling, fabrics, celebrities and so on. In simple words, don’t deviate from creating content that suits your brand. Start by selecting a few topics that your brand has expertise on and create content on those topics. Build on this same approach until you have a repository you can use at your will.
4. Pick relevant formats and channels: Marketing channels like social media, emails and ads can prove to be an effective way for reaching more audience. But you need to make sure that your content is engaging enough in each of these formats. Understand the platforms and the formats so as to learn what might work better. For instance, you can create quick reels on Instagram, use the e-mail marketing option of your website to send quick and pleasing emails and you can even share your website content to avoid spending too much time in creating fresh content. This is called repurposing content.
B. Plan ahead and create fast
1. Make your content calendar: Plan your content at least 15-30 days ahead. Note down the number of fresh content pieces and repurposed ones, mark them on the dates when they’ll be going live. When you plan at this scale, your hard work is sure to pay off.
2. First finish the copy work: Whether you have outsourced your content creation or you’re doing it yourself, always finish the copy first and finalise it before moving ahead with designing. Also, finalise the visual treatment of the creatives beforehand so that the designing process can be efficient as well. Remember that designing is a time-consuming task hence, it only makes your process faster if copy feedback to the designer is as minimal as possible.
3. Create guidelines for visuals: Have a small guide in place for visuals like fonts, brand colours and small but important things like logo placement. It can help your design team churn out content much faster than usual. This way they can focus on being creative in their representation of content and won’t have to worry about the basics like choosing a font for each creative. Time saved is time used efficiently.
4. Repurpose and remix your content: You can always go back to the content that is evergreen or relevant according to the current time and represent it in a different format on a different channel. This way you save time on research. You can also create templates for certain kinds of posts like text-based creatives or memes, so that you don’t have to think from scratch each time.
C. Execute on time and learn from the process!
1. Keep a track of your content: Create a small sheet and map it to the respective channel, posting time and date. This way you can schedule your content well in advance and you don’t have to be confused at the 11th hour. Maintaining a content tracker will also help you understand how your content is being received by your audience. It can also help you keep a track of the right day and time for posting based on the traction received earlier. Use these insights to plan better.
2. Optimise your content, regularly: Another important thing to note is that if a certain content format or message is not being received well by your audience, it is okay to discard it. You should understand what your audience likes. But in the process, many a times you will discover that a certain content piece might not get the response you had imagined it would. In such cases, you must learn to observe and take the lesson from the situation. Optimising your content not only helps you stay relevant, but also keeps the results consistent.
Content creation is an evolving process. As a creator, regular assessment of content can always help you plan your content better and make the creation process more efficient. The right method to win in the content game is to experiment, observe, analyse and learn from your content. Understanding this will only strengthen your mindset to think towards building your brand in the right way with the help of content.