Content Strategy in Only 3 Steps

By: Jozefien Verhaeghe

April 17, 2013

audience needs
community management
content strategy
customer journey
topics definition

Community management: a series of blog posts – part 3

In our previous blog posts we talked about the importance of Community Management and how to set up a channel strategy. Third step in your ‘super-duper-strategic-community-management-action-plan’ (Pro Tip: use long names to make it seem more important ;-)) is preparing the content you will distribute. This is something that shouldn’t be done without some good brainstorming of course. Ideally, you walk through a few steps before you get to the actual creation of the content:

  • Define the needs of your audience
  • Determine topics that can satisfy those needs
  • Select a few subjects per topic

Discover the needs of your audience

A good starting point when it comes to content, is putting yourself in the customers’ position and figure out what they want. People look up brands on social media with very different motives. One way to find out what these motives are is by defining the customer journey.

Typically, customers go through an entire process before and after they actually buy your product/service. This process consists of several moments of interaction in which they need different types of communication. Before customers buy the product/service, they generally look for advice, practical information and other people’s opinion. After they have bought it, they are typically more interested in after-sales support or a platform where they can share their experiences with other users.

Screen Shot 2013-04-17 at 12.00.37

These are the 3 most basic steps of a customer journey. According to the sector in which you are active and the product/service you sell, you can make each step more concrete with specific user actions. As an example, the inquiry process for Engagor users can consist of setting up a trial account, searching for pricing information, searching for information on how to use our tool, etc.

Determine specific topics to satisfy your audience’s needs

Once you have discovered the different stages in the customer journey, you can start defining content to satisfy the needs of your customers according to the stage they find themselves in.

Typically, you first define a few general topics, and then per topic some more specific subjects. One way to work here is to create a content matrix. In this matrix, you connect topics and consumer needs to specific subjects. Here’s an example for Engagor:

Screen Shot 2013-04-17 at 10.51.26

Keep in mind that you have different channels at your disposal. Some topics are more suitable for some platforms than others ;-). The ideal content strategy is integrated in your channel strategy. Make sure you adjust your content to every channel you use.

Now that you have a channel strategy and a content strategy, you have a solid base to start creating the actual content plan. In this content plan, you transform those topics you defined into concrete content and schedule them at the most appropriate date and time. More on this next week!

Community management: a series of blog posts: