Being an entrepreneur isn’t just about having passion. It means showing up consistently AND having a strategy to grow your business. Knowing what you need to do daily, weekly, and monthly is going to make a difference when it comes to creating your 90-day content strategy.
Creating a content strategy means taking an organized, strategic approach to your content so you control the narrative for what you become known for while progressing towards your goals. Think of your content strategy as a roadmap for the next 90-days and beyond of your business.
WHAT IS A CONTENT STRATEGY?
A content strategy is made up of the planning, creation, and implementation of creative content for your business. It brings your vision to life and ensures that the content that you are sharing is leading you back to the goals that you want to reach.
Think of your content strategy as the roadmap for your content marketing.
Your unique content strategy unifies all the marketing elements of your business: social media, blogging, podcast appearances, and even guest expert content and features.
Your strategy should be loaded with opportunities to repurpose valuable content your followers and clients want to devour that sets you up as an expert. After all, you want your business to be the first one they think of when they run into the issue that you solve.
THE DIFFERENT ELEMENTS OF YOUR CONTENT STRATEGY
What makes for an effective content strategy? It’s a blend of spoken, written, and designed content that draws on consistent brand messaging everywhere you show up.
Cool, cool… So how do you start mapping it out?
Begin with writing down on a piece of paper all of the different platforms that you use for your business. This includes social media platforms, search engines like Pinterest and Google,(oh yeah, btw, Pinterest is a giant search engine), speaking, video, blogging, email marketing, Facebook groups, and anything else that you use to help build and grow your business.
Questions to consider when you are creating your strategy.
- What are my goals for the next 90 days?
- What core messages do I want to be known for?
- How many times do I need to show up on each platform?
- Where does my audience hang out?
- Do I have any specials or sales coming up that I need to share?
- Who can I reach out to for guest expert opportunities?
- Is there anyone that I can connect with for guest expert content on my site?
Get as specific as you can and spend some time here because what you uncover is the backbone of your strategy.
STEP BY STEP GUIDE TO CREATE YOUR 90-DAY CONTENT STRATEGY
Whether you like to create your strategy using pen and paper or a digital version, these steps are going to help you to create your unique strategy for the next 90 days.
First, start with grabbing a calendar for the next 90 days, a pen if using a paper version, and a piece of paper.
It is time to map out your goals for the next 90 days.
You need to understand your goals before you can begin to create your content strategy.
A few questions to ask yourself before creating your goals.
- What worked for me last year or quarter?
- What didn’t work?
- What do I truly enjoy doing in my business?
- What do I truly dislike doing in my business?
- What do I want to be known for?
- What content did my audience like the most?
- Was there a platform that stood out and had the most growth for my business?
- How did my clients purchase from me?
- What do I want to accomplish?
If you have too many goals, it’s difficult to focus, so choose 2-3 big picture goals for the next 12 months. Why are we talking 6-12 months if this is a 90-day content plan? Well, simply because your 90-day content plan needs to work with everything else you’re doing to reach those goals.
If you divide those goals by four, what would be a reasonable benchmark for each to achieve in the next 90 days?
Are there any commonalities? By this I mean will success in one lead to success in others? If so, choose that one thing to focus on.
Again, choose only 2-3 goals and identify how you’ll know you’ve been successful. Write them down.
Once you have your goals mapped out, it is time to pull out the calendar.
If you have anything that is being launched, write it down on the month and day that it is happening – This gives you a clear picture of what you are working towards.
Now, with those goals in mind, and your platform analysis above, figure out what kinds of content and messaging are most likely to lead to success.
- What beliefs do people currently have that you need to shift? (myths and misconceptions)
- What are the truths they should believe?
- What strong opinions do you have about these things?
- What possibilities are there?
- What are the elements of your business that you need to be known for to shift those beliefs?
- What content do you already have that you can piggyback on?
Work backward from any launch dates you currently have to figure out what types of content you need to start from. Then map out some meatiest content and talking points, and figure out where you want to house it:
- Social Media
Choose one of the above. And then figure out how you can repurpose that messaging across any other platforms you want to show up on.
At this point, you shouldn’t be focusing on creating the content, just planning the big picture topics and bullet points.
Remember, it is important to note that you know who your target audience is when it comes to creating your content strategy. Knowing who you are selling to helps you understand their struggles. This is going to help you create content that builds brand awareness, and in turn, the know, like, and trust factor.
Map out your customer journey so that you can create content that takes them along that journey.
This is one of the reasons that it is so important to know your customer…
A customer journey is an entire experience that a customer has with a brand or business from first encountering you to becoming a client – at its baseline, it’s how you build relationships. However, it’s more than that. It’s also where they are in their journey and at what point they need your help.
On the calendar, write out when you publish your content.
There are two ways to do this:
Option 1 – develop a posting schedule.
If you publish on Instagram daily, write it out on the calendar. If you publish a blog post 4 times a month, write the date that it goes live on the calendar. If you have a podcast, write on the calendar what dates the episodes go live.
Now give yourself grace here. In my business, we have a rough schedule that shifts based on our ability to get things done. Generally, you’ll see me post 2-3 blog posts a month, 3-5x a week on social, and 1-2 emails a week.
Option 2 – plan based on your capacity.
If option 1 is your ideal world, option 2 is your real world. Realistically, is one blog a month all you can do? Then, by all means, stick with that, and make it good. Then figure out how far you can stretch that content. For 1 blog, you can easily generate 2 emails and 3-4 social posts.
Regardless of what options you choose, when you map out your content this way, it removes the overwhelm.
Of utmost importance: having a plan for 90 days doesn’t mean you need to instantly create your content for those next 90 days. This is a roadmap so that you can take and create the content when you need it. You will be organized and won’t be scrambling to figure out what to talk about on your social media.
Take your next 30 days of content and begin to write it out.
I survive by batching – that means choosing one activity at a time and focusing on it. Writing out your content is always the most time-consuming aspect but doing so at once saves you time and stress long-term. When creating this content, make sure to add in your call to action.
Create your graphics
Your graphics are the first thing that your customer sees on most social media platforms. Make sure that they are branded to easily recognize your business. Also, remember to include your website or logo on every graphic that you create. The importance of this stage depends largely on the platforms you show up on… it’s probably worth your while to create some high-impact templates and stick with those to maximize your time.
Schedule your content
The best thing about creating a content strategy is that you can schedule your content ahead of time. Take a day to put it all in your scheduler and it will take the stress out of having to show up every day to post on your social media.
A few final tips when creating your content strategy.
- Know your CTAs ahead of time.
- Have links ready to go so you can easily share where needed.
- Create a schedule that works for you whether it is a week at a time, 30 days, or more.
- Stay organized.
- Have fun with your content.
- Decide how you’ll evaluate success and then take the time to check those metrics each month
How Content Fits In With Copy
“You’re a copywriter Erin, so why are you so focused on content strategy?” Content gives you the tools to show up, and in fact, a 90-day content funnel is integral to my REACH Visibility Trajectory™ (It’s the H — read more here).
Wish you had a guide to walk you through this process? You can! I have content workshops that take you step-by-step through the theory of mapping out 12 months of content AND then creating a plan 30 days at a time. Or if you want 1:1 strategy plus tactical implementation, I also partner with small and mid-sized businesses on content strategy and deliverables. Contact me today to find out how we can start.