The first recorded attempt at creating a perpetual motion machine was Bhaskara’s Wheel – a wheel which always had more weight on one side than the other invented by an Indian scientist in the 12th century.
Since then, many an engineer has attempted to create a perpetual motion machine – one which will keep on turning without the input of any additional energy. And none has succeeded. The concept is fundamentally flawed because all bodies are subject to the second law of thermodynamics, which states that they are subject to forces and processes that gradually dissipate their kinetic energy.
The point in this short detour into mechanics and physics? Simply put, no motion occurs without the input of some form of energy. When it comes to a marketing plan, the same principle applies. Even if you have the best laid plans, even if your marketing has gotten off to a good start, it won’t simply keep on revolving by itself.
In today’s post, I’m speaking to Fifty Five and Five’s very own Aidan Danaher (our marketing maestro) for his insights into creating a sustainable approach to digital and content marketing plan. Aidan’s a graduate of the Chartered Institute of Marketing and has a lot of experience helping brands differentiate themselves and talk about their products and services in the right way. He provides expert tips for digital and content marketers about how to keep creating content, staying fresh and keeping the marketing wheel turning.
Why do digital and content marketing machines “run out of steam”?
So, you had a load of meetings, you created a content calendar, you got exec buy in and you laid out your digital marketing plans for the next 6-12 months. It was all there in a proposal document, a spreadsheet – or even on a Gantt chart! It looked good and your colleagues got on board from day one. Dave from R&D wrote a blog post about your product. Karen from HR got stuck in with Twitter. Even Kwazi from IT agreed to appear in your video. The perfect start.
But then, three months later, you find yourself looking at the corporate website. No new content has been uploaded since the beginning of the year. The initial bubble of enthusiasm has burst and the digital and content marketing plan seems to have given up the ghost. What went wrong?
- Falling at the first hurdle. Companies often expect immediate results from digital and content marketing. When their first sorties don’t turn into a rush of leads, they very quickly get dispirited.
- No time. It’s the excuse any marketing manager has heard when trying to corral colleagues into writing blog posts and other content.
- No new ideas. After the first enthusiasm, you soon ran out of ideas for engaging Twitter posts and articles.
Aidan notes that these issues are all too common:
Make your content marketing plan sustainable
Aidan explains that for any marketing plan to be a success, ownership is key:
2. Create a process
Content doesn’t publish itself; you need a process in place which will ensure the content is created regularly, and maintain quality standards.
3. Have an editorial theme
Very often, companies produce a lot of ‘generic’ content. To make your blog stand out, it should be personalised to your target audience. Aidan says:
4. Store ideas in a shared place
From time to time, you’ll have a great idea for a new article for the website, or even a brand new marketing campaign. However, if you only jot that down on a piece of paper then forget all about it, don’t expect it to ever materialise.
5. Create a content pipeline
No matter what your content marketing goals are, creating a pipeline of content for the next few weeks or even months will ensure you don’t get caught out. Aidan explains:
6. Short and long-term strategies
Ideally, content marketing plan should come in two forms. You need a long term ‘editorial’, where you write about company news, produce great newsletters, and simply produce content on topics that are important to you. However, this also needs to be combined with occasional pushes around new products and events, Aidan says:
7. Stay inspired
The greatest challenge for any content creator is keeping new ideas coming in. Aidan recommends a variety of ways of generating these ideas:
Looking to improve your marketing?
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