I could give you a brand new car, but if you don’t know how to operate the stick shift, you’ll be going nowhere fast. That’s the difference between content marketing and content strategy: knowing how to effectively use your tools.
Last week, we demystified content marketing, the art of engaging an audience with interesting, valuable, and (most importantly) non-promotional content.
Now we’re throwing the veil off of content strategy, the art of crafting content marketing for a specific purpose. If “content marketing” defines the overall approach, think of “content strategy” as a way to harness and focus that into a laser-beam for targeted and tactical use.
What Does Content Strategy Look Like?
Imagine content created to convert visitors to your website, copy written to increase engagement over social media, and a script designed to elicit a response along a certain stage in your sales process. All the content looks different, right?
In this sense, there’s no such thing as “good copy” for content marketing; there’s only good copy for a particular purpose—a particular content strategy. The words in your LinkedIn profile will inevitably be different than the copy on your landing page, which in turn will be different than the content of your blog.
What Does Content Strategy Do?
We spoke last week about how the consumer base has changed: instead of isolated actors waiting for a one-way pitch, your audience is socially engaged and looking for a reciprocal conversation.
A finely tuned strategy respects the venue, accounts for the audience, and furthers the company-consumer dialogue that typifies the evolved marketplace of modern business.
Effective content strategy translates both sides of the new dialogue, situating a business squarely within in the social atmosphere, instead of outside it. This creates a real connection with today’s socially empowered consumers, rather than the lone wolves of yesteryear.
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Stay tuned next week for Part 3 on Digital Strategy.
Daniel DiGriz is MarketSmiths’ Chief Marketing Officer. He lives in New York, is a writer himself, and is President of MadPipe, a digital strategy firm that gets businesses more clients through digital marketing.