The Complete Content Marketing Checklist
Welcome to The Complete Content Marketing Checklist!
Content marketing is one of the most effective strategies for creating valuable content, and increasing organic traffic. And attract more leads and engage with your audience.
The best way to ensure that you will successfully perform all required content marketing tasks is to follow a checklist.
That’s why we created the Complete Content Marketing Checklist. Our checklist covers all the important tasks you need to complete. To ensure that you are getting the most out of all the benefits that content marketing can bring to your business.
So if you want to learn how to use content marketing to increase your online visibility, you will love this list.
Content Marketing Checklist
To optimize your content marketing campaigns, follow this checklist:
What Is Content Marketing?
The first item on your checklist is to make sure you have a clear idea of what content marketing is all about. And why is it important to the success of a digital marketing campaign?
Content marketing is the digital marketing process responsible for creating, publishing, and promoting the right type of content to the right audience.
The Content marketing cycle has 5 main steps:
[+] Market research (define your audience)
[+] Find Content Ideas to Meet Your Target Audience’s Intent
[+] Create High-Quality Content and Optimize It
[+] Promote Content with the right channels
[+] Analyze/Optimize the Performance of Your Content Marketing Campaigns
Content marketing is important because:
[+] It has a bigger ROI than other marketing methods
[+] It can greatly help your SEO efforts
[+] It’s a great way to increase your website visibility and brand awareness
[+] It’s good for customer care and support
[+] It’s the best way to set up an online business
So before you move on to the next item on the list, make sure you understand the basics, the resources below will help you get started.
Know Your Audience
As mentioned above, content marketing is about creating content for the right audience.
So a possible first step is to do market research and understand your target audience.
Learn as much as you can about your audience
At the end of your study, you will have answers to questions like:
[+] What kind of content do they like to read?
[+] What kind of questions do they have?
[+] What channels do they use to find answers?
[+] What products can solve their problems?
You should then analyze their demographic profile (age, gender, location, language, education level, ethnic background) and generate different customer personalities.
Don’t worry if this sounds complicated. There are tools you can use to help you collect and analyze the information you need.
Create A High-Level Content Marketing Strategy
Before you start learn what type of content to create and for what topics. It is important to create a high-level content marketing strategy.
Your strategy might include things like:
[+] What are your high-level goals (get more visits, sell more, brand awareness, etc)?
[+] What Content marketing tools to use to do research (SEMRUSH, Google Analytics, etc.)
[+] What tools to use to create content (Word, Google Docs, Grammarly, etc.)
[+] What budget and how much of your own time to allocate to content marketing activities
[+] How often will you publish new content
[+] How to measure the effectiveness of your campaigns
[+] What channels should you create content for?
[+] Type of Content (text, video, audio) you need to publish
[+] What tools do you use to promote content?
[+] Who can help you with content creation (freelancers, people on your team, etc.)
Thinking about this information in advance and before starting with the content creation process will help you a LOT with planning and budgeting.
Don’t forget that content marketing is one of the most expensive and time-consuming digital marketing processes. So it’s important to think about all the parameters before starting the implementation.
Find Content Ideas
The next item on the checklist is knowing the process of finding what topics/keywords to target with your content.
One of the main goals of content marketing is to create the right type of content for the right audience. If you start creating content without a purpose, you will be wasting your time and money.
When we refer to ‘relevant content types’, we basically mean:
[+] Content your audience wants to see
[+] Content can increase your potential to rank higher in search engines
[+] Content that can generate more conversions for your business (email signups, leads, sales)
The good news is that there is a process to help you determine what your audience likes and what topics to target.
To remove this item from your checklist you should know:
[+] Process to follow to find content topic ideas
[+] List of keywords to target with different types of content you will create
Content Marketing Plan
When all the above checks have been done. The next step is to create a detailed content marketing plan.
Unlike content marketing strategy which is a high-level plan. This should be an execution plan with as much detail as possible.
I personally use Google calendar to maintain my content marketing plan. But you can use any other tool you want. A lot of people are using Excel and Google Sheets, which is perfectly fine.
HINT: In Google calendar, you can create a custom calendar that is separate from your personal and work calendars.
It is important to have the right information in your plan and the minimum details are:
[+] When will a piece of content be published and on what channel (i.e. website, FB, etc.)
[+] Actual title to be used (Blog post title, Facebook post title, YouTube video title, etc.)
[+] Specify the duration of the content (in words)
[+] Specify whether the content will be a pillar page, part of a topic cluster, or a supporting article
[+] Clearly define your target keywords, long-tail keywords, and LSI keywords that can be used in the text
[+] Specify who will write the content
[+] Specify how to promote specific content
[+] When to review performance and when to update content
When it comes to content creation, on your checklist you need to make sure that:
[+] You have a clear understanding of what a Pillar page is, what a content cluster is, and how and when each is used.
[+] You know what evergreen content is and why it matters
[+] You know the different techniques you can use to create connectable assets.
Some tips to consider:
[+] Every piece of content you create is an asset to your website and should be treated accordingly.
[+] Good content is difficult to produce but when done right, it can generate millions of visits to your website over the years.
[+] Don’t sacrifice quality for quantity. Successful websites are those that manage to create a LOT of great content.
[+] Create content for your target audience, not for your own credibility. For example, it’s easy for me to create content to impress my SEO colleagues, but this won’t help my target audience of SEO and digital marketing beginners.
Optimizing Content For Search Engines
This is an important check in the content marketing checklist. Before publishing a piece of content for search engines, you need to make sure that it is SEO optimized.
SEO optimization does not make content less attractive to users, on the contrary, SEO-friendly content is better for both search engines and users.
Some necessary checks when doing On-page:
[+] Optimize your post titles and make sure they include your target keywords
[+] Check to make sure that your post title is unique and not the same as one of the titles that appeared on the first page of Google
[+] Make sure your URL is short and includes your target keyword
[+] Check if on your page you have only one H1 tag and it is the same or similar to the page title
[+] Check and make sure you have several headings in your text and these are formatted as H2 and H3 and include related keywords
[+] Make sure your text is easy to read (small paragraphs)
[+] Make sure all your images have the right ALT Text
[+] Make sure the relevant Schema is added to the post and that the schema is optimized for site links and featured snippets
This is the final step in the content marketing process but it is NOT optional. If you don’t promote your Content appropriately, you will minimize your chances of getting any profit from it.
[+] In order for a page to rank higher on Google, it needs backlinks from other websites.
[+] For a post to go viral on social media, it needs the help of influencers.
[+] For a post to generate leads and sales, it has to be promoted to the right audience.
Here is your content promotion checklist:
[+] Promote Content to Your Email Subscribers (Send newsletters)
[+] Post content multiple times on your social media sites
[+] Connect with the sites/bloggers mentioned in your content (for this step to work, you need to strategically link to other sites/bloggers and let them know about it)
[+] Promote your content using paid advertising on different social platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, etc.)
[+] Promote content by adding internal links from other posts on your site (including your homepage)
Learn To Use Content Marketing Tools
Content marketing is a process that cannot be accomplished without the use of tools.
You need tools to find which topics to target. You need tools for keyword research, and you need tools to measure the effectiveness of your content marketing campaigns.
So you need to make sure you get the knowledge you need to work with the tools you choose to run successful content marketing campaigns.
The tools that can help you with content marketing are:
[+] SEMRUSH – for topic and keyword research, audit content, content creation, and more.
[+] Aherfs – an alternative to SEMRUSH
[+] Google Analytics – to track your content performance
[+] Google Search Console – to track your content’s Google rankings
[+] Google Trends – for topic research
[+] Google Keyword Tool – for keyword research
[+] Google Data Studio – for reporting and analysis
[+] Grammarly – to improve the grammar and spelling of your written content
Analyze And Monitor Performance
Just publishing content in the hope that it will produce the expected results is not enough. You need to continuously monitor the performance of your campaigns using various metrics.
The most common metrics to track are:
[+] Number of sites and pageviews
[+] Bounce rate (for website content)
[+] Number of email subscriptions
[+] Number of leads/sales
[+] Likes, shares, and comments
[+] Unique hits from social networks
[+] Video Views (for video content)
[+] Ranking (for what exact keywords and where on Google it appears)
[+] Number of backlinks
We recommend creating a spreadsheet and having all the information in one place. That way, you can easily figure out which types of content perform better than others, and adjust your content marketing plan accordingly. In addition, it is much easier to do a content audit and remove content that is not performing well in search or any other channel.
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