As things change at a fast pace, so does the need to evaluate every element of a content marketing strategy, in order to maintain the strongest features and improve (or abandon) the weakest ones.
This process may seem daunting, but still, it should not be avoided as it may simplified into the analysis and the evaluation of the following parts:
A content audit provides an overview of all the available assets and it may be very helpful when trying to identify what works better for your content marketing strategy and what can still be improved.
It is important to keep your content audit updated, in order to be able to assess the performance of all the posts and draw valuable insights regarding traffic, engagement, time spent on site, social shares, etc.
What’s more, a content audit helps you analyse all the details that may improve your post, from the time it is published, to the links, or the length of the post.
Here’s what may need to be checked:
- Are all the posts included in the content audit?
- Is the content audit properly organised?
- Are there any links to posts that are not working?
- Is every title clear, appealing and optimised?
- Do older posts remain relevant? Should you update them?
- Is there any page you’re not using anymore?
After examining the posts, it’s time to fill the content gaps and spot any opportunity that could lead to new posts, or any way that could lead more traffic to older posts.
Sample of content audit by UXmastery
A content calendar is extremely useful for the planning of the content marketing activity, as it organises the existing content, enhancing both the publishing and the marketing efforts.
Consistency is important when maintaining a content calendar, either when planning the day or the year ahead.
In order to ensure its efficiency, an organised content calendar needs to be updated from time to time and here are the questions that need to be asked to make the process easier:
- Is your content calendar up-to-date?
- Are you consistent with the implementation of your content schedule?
- What could be improved to make the process faster?
- Have you added all the key events in your calendar?
- Is your content properly aligned with your campaigns?
- Do you need to tweak your content to improve your sales cycle?
- Are the categories correctly linked to your content?
- Do you use the right keywords?
The content calendar is the representation of your content marketing efforts and there’s always room for improvement on the way you schedule, publish, promote, or track your content.
Sample content calendar by Hubspot
It’s very useful to create buyer personas, or else fictional representations of your audience, to understand your ideal customers and target them appropriately.
However, there may be a time when your buyer personas change, due to a different content marketing strategy, or a bigger change to your strategy. This brings out the need to review your buyer personas from time to time and examine whether they reflect your actual audience.
Here are the questions that will help you review your buyer personas:
- When did you create your current personas?
- Are they relevant to your audience?
- Do you need to update them with additional information?
- Should you create new personas?
An updated version of your buyer personas would allow you to learn more about your audience, understand its needs and deliver the right content, which will ultimately help you reach your goals and overcome any challenges.
Google Analytics (or any other platforms that measure the performance of your content) should be a vital part of your content marketing strategy, as it provides the necessary insights that help you with the acquisition, the behavior and the demographics of your audience.
This allows you to measure among others:
- Unique views
- Time on site
- Bounce rate
- Referral traffic
- Search terms
- Social traffic
The analysis of your data helps you find the evergreen content that still leads to a consistent number of views, while this may also lead to new opportunities to upgrade the existing content, or even create new one, inspired by what already exists.
Pageviews for evergreen content
Your analytics may also be used along with the content calendar, the content audit and the buyer personas, which proves the importance of understanding all the metrics and how they can be included in your improved content marketing strategy.
You don’t have to perform a full SEO analysis when updating your content marketing strategy, but you can still proceed to the necessary tweaks that will improve your posts from now on.
A post’s traffic is affected by the use of keywords (either positively or negatively) and this requires the frequent analysis of them, especially for older posts. Are all your keywords relevant to each post? Should you add new ones? Is there a keyword that you need to stop using?
When it comes to finding new keywords, there are many tools you can use for high value keywords that are effective and relevant for your content and may help you refresh your older posts or inspire further ideas for new content.
The title of a post affects the reader’s first impression and of course, the post’s performance in searches. It is important to create clear and direct headlines, preferably of no more than 60 characters, using your main keyword if possible (but always within the right context).
Check your older posts to analyse their headlines and see if you can create better ones from now on.
While refreshing your content marketing strategy, it is a great opportunity to clean duplicate content and anything that harms your site’s SEO.
From a guest post that was also published in another source, to the accidental creation of two identical pages, duplicate content is affecting the search experience and it’s time to use your content audit to find out what needs to be removed (or merged to one page).
Email marketing campaigns are still part of your content marketing strategy and they may be examined along with your analytics, in order to improve the performance of your opening rates, the clicks and the traffic coming from your emails.
It’s important to test your emails from time to time and examine the statistics that will help you improve your metrics and thus, your strategy.
What’s more, it may be a good idea to update your email contacts, keeping the important ones and removing the spams, or the unwanted ones. This way you’re only keeping the most important (and relevant) audience for your content marketing strategy, which leads to more effective measurement.
A successful content marketing strategy needs to be regularly assessed and refreshed when needed, in order to keep up with the changing needs of the site and the audience.
If there’s something that doesn’t work the way you expected, don’t be afraid to leave it aside, as it will only absorb your time from what’s really effective.
That’s what the update of your content marketing strategy is about.
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