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Content marketing strategy for small businesses: top 11 tips – Search Engine Land

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Search Engine Land » SEO » Content » Content marketing strategy for small businesses: top 11 tips
Content marketing is creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire and engage a clearly defined audience – to drive profitable customer action. The more content you create, the better your chances are for success.
Here are 11 tips to create a smart content marketing strategy for small businesses.
Why are you creating content?
Knowing your why – your mission – defines the goal or purpose behind every piece of content, and not all content will yield the same results. 
Some goals may overlap, but it still needs to be inherently defined.
For example, if you are a local restaurant, your “why” might be to share great recipes or cooking tips.
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Know whom you’re talking to so you know what they want to hear from you. Not only defining your mission’s content is important, but also who the content will be targeting. 
You may have more than one audience you want to speak to, but these personas should know exactly who it is you want to attract and where they are:
You should create objectives for each of your goals so you know what success looks like.
For example, if an objective is to build authority, then:
How will you measure results and your performance?
Make sure you also have tools in place and ensure they are installed properly so you can measure effectively. Some content marketing measurements can be:
Figure out how much time, money, or staff you have available for content creation and promotion. Start with your budget, goals, and objectives with your content strategy.
Need additional resources? Sites like Upwork and FreeUp are a couple that could help with any needs regarding the content or virtual assistants.
A content calendar is the main tool to keep you on time and task. It doesn’t have to be done in any project management tool if that’s not accessible.
All you need is a simple spreadsheet. Form fields to include are:
Start with the idea of what format would be suitable for the topic and decide what platform would have the most impact on this topic(s).
Keyword research is key. Start by finding keywords with high volume and low competition. 
Researching what other people type when doing research will make your content easier to find, but it will appeal to the audience.
Google’s autocomplete is a quick and easy way to find ideas on what people are searching for.
Additionally, the content must be visually appealing, so put effort into the images associated with your content. Make sure your CTA (calls to action) are in the right area.
Look into your data (Google Analytics, YouTube, social posts that got great engagement) and see if you can recycle that content into fresh blogs, social media posts, infographics or videos. This tactic can save you a lot of time, as the initial legwork has been done. 
Make a note every quarter to go through old content and see what evergreen content needs to be updated.
Every industry is different, but many industries’ rules, regulations and/or stipulations will change.
Your content must be updated, so you don’t appear outdated or not abreast of what industry information is coming out.
Similar to repurposing content, evergreen or popular content should be promoted not just once or twice, but as long as possible. Make sure to spread it out. You’ve invested time, effort, and budget into the content. Make sure you get the most out of it.
Once you know what you’re tracking (see step four) you can easily see what worked – and what didn’t.
Look into ways you can replicate your successes.
What type of content worked best (e.g., long-form, short-form, comparisons, how-tos)? What topics were popular (and can you find new ways to create more content on those topics)?
Your analytics will help you uncover new content opportunities that can help you achieve your goals.
Opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land. Staff authors are listed here.
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