Wednesday, April 27, 2011
Content Marketing 101: Start with a Big Idea
All good content strategies start with a Big Idea, meaning you need a Big Idea before you begin recording any YouTube videos, producing any podcasts, or writing any blog posts. Step away from the content creation tools and figure out the one message that you want to communicate across all of your content channels.
Get your team together for a whiteboarding session and decide what your reason for being really is. I know, it sounds super existential, but your Big Idea will drive every aspect of your content strategy, so it’s important that you take it seriously. Don’t worry, though; it doesn’t have to be hard. Here's a ficticious example:
ABC Pools’ Big Idea: ABC Pools wants to take the hassle and fear out of buying a pool, installing a pool, and maintaining a pool. This simple sentence allows the employees of ABC Pools to sanity check each piece of content that they create before they create it. It also plays a powerful role in the creation of a content food chain. With a Big Idea in place, ABC Pools can now rest assured that every piece of content it creates will easily translate across multiple mediums. If every blog post or email marketing message stays true to their Big Idea, those blog posts and email marketing messages can easily come together to create an eBook. Flipping this around, if the eBook they create sticks to their Big Idea, they can easily break it down into podcasts, tweets, email marketing messages, blog posts, and videos.
This “Food Chain” simplifies the process of content creation by allowing every piece of content you create to become more than just a one-off effort. As Ann Handley puts it, by taking the time to “reimagine your content at the point of inception,” you give yourself the ability to create a sustainable content strategy.
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