4 Habits of an Award-Winning Content Strategist

Jen Saunders
Reading Time: 4 minutes

People often think that content marketers and content strategists are one in the same. The very name “content marketing” is one of these overused buzzwords along with “evergreen” and “ROI” leaving innovative agencies rolling their eyes at. These terms should be retired to the old timey marketing texts and replaced with language that truly expresses the tasks and their goals at hand.

Take it from the best inbound marketing agencies in Los Angeles to New York City; creating a winning content strategy that enables a client to hit his growth goals requires some habitual modifications to tired, old strategies. Here are four of them that, if embraced, will help you create content that buyers will relate to, and find inspiration to make a purchase.

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1. Know Your Readers

If you want to differentiate yourself from content marketers as a strategist, you need to know your readers. This means you need to understand what context their buying pain is buried in, and create a content workflow to help them become aware to their problem. You also need to design content that will help each readership cohort consider various solutions, and settle on your product. You will need to create detailed buyer personas that delve deep into their professional and personal identities and discover how your product fulfills a need in every strand of their identity. In order to get the data needed to create buyer personas you will need to interview your sales department, comb through client emails, perform social media research, send out questionnaires, and study your current client lists.

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2. Perform Keyword Research Focusing on Topics and Context

Clearly, your content needs to rank well so it can be found. If you want to do continue the same song and dance that thousands of others are doing, then go ahead and create your content strategy around the keywords with the highest search volume. Or if you want to rank content designed to convert specific buyer groups, you will need to take appropriate topics and contextual considerations from your buyer persona research, find the industry related keywords that fit into the topic, and create longtail versions alongside the obvious. Remember, semantic search is key, and with the growth in smart home searches being performed in America, this strategy is aligned to be relevant for years to come.

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3. Segment Your Audience for Content Targeting

Don’t blog to the moon; this is a cookie-cutter lazy strategy that has no specific reader in mind. Remember, being a successful content strategist means you create articles and blogs that dig at a buyer pain, get people curious, and educate them to the point they are ready to make a decision and buy. You will need to segment your audience and create buckets for content targeting. Your buyers have different pains and needs for your products and services, so be sure to write topic-specific contextual content that resonates with individual groups. If you just try shooting content at the entire lot, your fire will spray off to the side and, though you might hit a few, you will miss most.

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4. Be an Experimental Content Strategist

The only way to stay innovative and continuously evolve is by creating content strategies designed to work within the space of contemporary technology, but also to experiment and try various tactics to improve conversions. Organic ranking plays a role into how well your content converts, so experimenting with ways to improve your content’s organic ranking is definitely worth doing.

You also may want to consider various guides and assets that readers can download as free guests through a CTA at the bottom of each article. Experiment with your CTA content and placement. Inbound marketing platforms like HubSpot allow you to craft content workflows that nurture people through a process until they buy. The platform also captures each visitor’s journey through your workflow allowing you to pinpoint which pieces of content converted well, and which need some re-working.

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