Content marketing may not be the most difficult part in your digital marketing strategy, it is definitely one of the most crucial compartment that decides whether your company's marketing strategy is a success or a failure.
Like all other digital marketing aspects, there are tons of "tips" and "hacks" and "tools" floating in this vast Internet world, each claiming to be the last resource you'd ever need.
And we all know this could not be true.
However, while the efficiency of your content strategy goes back to your understanding of your company's mission and values, there are certain resources that will make your venture in the content world much easier.
If I can only recommend one resource for content marketers, it would be CMI.
This is the one place where you can learn all about creating content, and where all-levels of marketers unite and share their insights regarding content strategies.
The CMI website is basically a collective blogging platform. The only difference is their content is carefully crafted and selected by experienced content marketers, and their purpose is to educate new content marketers while keeping the more senior ones in the loop.
Because CMI shares such a wide variety of content, especially niche-specific digital marketing trends and benchmark reports, this is my go-to place when I feel stuck with my content strategy, or simply would like to catch up with what's going on in the content world.
Plus, it is also a collective resource platform that directs its visitors to other more specific marketing resources. Think about a big intersection on the highways that allows you to go different directions - that is basically what CMI is.
There are WAY too many people in internet marketing today that think “great content” is enough. (Brian Dean)
The skyscraper technique, in short, helps a content marketer to create not only good, but easy-to-consume articles that will prompt others to willingly link to it. The technique focus more on how readers' function in the digital world and on different platforms (mobile, especially) and how to capture their short attention span.
While I am not the biggest fan of Brian Dean's writing style - that's the English major snob version of me speaking - as it seems to consider its audience having zero capability of reading properly and must be walked through the article with baby steps, his Skyscraper Technique is something I absolutely love.
Content marketing is not just publishing.
It goes back to the essence of all marketing and sales activity: relationship-building.
And that is exactly what the skyscraper technique is about.
Okay now. No more spoilers. Read it yourselves! ;)
If you are into social media marketing and more specifically, creating valuable, sharable, scalable content on social media, you definitely don't want to miss out on Convince & Connect.
By far, they run one of the most recognized and trusted blog for content strategy on the Internet - and trust me, that's a pretty big deal.
While C&C's blog is sectioned into multiple subcategories, my recommendations fall into the Content Marketing and Social Media Marketing tabs. Not saying the other categories aren't good - but these two are C&C's most useful and resourceful categories, as far as I am concerned.
Another good thing about C&C's blog is that they offer a lot of free downloadable that is extremely friendly for new content marketers, including strategy template, worksheets and infographics. Their content also catch up with the new technology developments pretty fast.
For example, one of their latest post was about content optimization utilizing voice search - fancy, eh?
Videos are so hot right now.
But are you doing youtube videos right so your content is getting picked up by the algorithm?
The Taxonomy Strategy is by far one of the most developed, most rounded and most applicable youtube strategies I've read about, and it feels like a crime to keep such a good source all to myself.
The only reason this is ranked at #4 is because the amount of energy and commitment video content requires - and not all business owners, especially startup owners, can make that commitment on top of what they are already joggling with.
If a film bills itself as an action movie and instead you get a romantic drama you would likely walk out of the theater pretty quickly.
But for podcasters, streamers, and any other businesses that utilizes youtube as part of their regular content strategy - this is gold. Because it doesn't teach you how to shoot your video, but it tells you how to present your content properly, so it:
attracts your ideal audience
provides valuable message as expected by that audience
rank higher in the youtube algorithm
Even if you are not posting video content on Youtube, this is still a worthy read as the theory and logic lies behind video content creation is similar between different platforms. The algorithms may differ, but the standards for high-quality, valuable videos do not.
There are SO MANY "content strategy guides."
They make it sound like all you need to do is tap on your head, use one of the "templates", and voila, you have a perfect content strategy.
Now, we all know things don't work like that.
However, there are some pretty good beginner's guide to building a content strategy out there, one of them being SEM Rush's Ultimate Guide.
In general, SEM Rush is a good tool to get your feet wet with SEO and content optimization. But the main reason I recommend this strategy-building guide over other similar articles is because of the large amount of visual (infographics) included in this article.
We are all visual animals, and for someone just getting into the strategic planning part of their overall digital marketing effort, having bright, easy-to-read visuals can save a lot of headaches.
Also, SEM Rush's guide combined marketing with the sales process and adapted Ryan Deiss's famous customer journey map, which makes it a lot easier to expand the same logic to other aspects of your digital marketing strategy.
So, here are my Top 5 content marketing resource recommendation. As a professional digital marketer, we must constantly learn and grow, and a large part of it is building our individual knowledge bases.
Holding back will never bring true growth. Rather, only by encouraging others to research and learn can we bring better changes to this vast market for digital marketing itself.
Everyone can be a digital marketer - that's true. But it takes time and effort, and most importantly, dedication and accountability to become a good digital marketer.