Why do some brands succeed more than others?

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Whether you’re a one-person operation or a CEO in charge of a large company, content marketing efforts is no child’s play. Churning out content with a strategy is not enough. There are many other factors that influence content to make it effective, impactful, long term. Most brands today have three or four core campaigns lined up for the year. This really doesn’t work as it sends out cluttered signals to the target audience. Content strategy planning is a virtue to be taken up seriously and with long-term prospects in mind.

Think long term
Things may not go your way at the start but that’s okay, you can always keep on tinkering and keep removing the weaker ideas while cultivating the better ones. Content marketing strategy is like a planned city at the drawing board stage. First, envision, then plan, and then start building the blocks one by one. Did someone say Rome wasn’t built in a day? Cadbury, Thumbs Up, Coke, Raymond’s, all have a long term plan and they stick to it.

Service your customers
Good content marketing isn’t about doing what you want. It’s about serving your customers with what they want. Regardless of your role within the company or department, try to get into their heads by analysing their lifestyles, their everyday lives, their struggles and more importantly, what they want and what makes them smile. Content generation is all about their communication needs, not yours. Air BNB is an excellent example here. Their YouTube channel has over 200,000 subscribers and is frequently updated with new stories, reviews, and profiles. That’s engagement!

Variety is the spice
Content marketing could be boring as one has to play within the self-defined boundaries. Therefore, adding a dash of humour or a tease works magic. Keep experimenting and build on the city envisioned, but don’t let go off the bigger picture, the essence should always remain intact. Amul’s tongue-in-cheek sketches starring the Amul baby commenting jovially on the latest news or current events is I think the best possible example here.

Speak to your customers
Content marketing is not your vision alone; always keep customers and the brand before yourself. Engage with your customers as much as possible and initiate conversations with them. Listen more than you speak and make notes of their feedback. You will sooner or later be able to identify that one unified pattern emerges. Amazon is always prompt in their communications, be it updates on shipments or asking for a feedback rating on the experience or the product.

Believe in the idea
If you are not convinced with the idea, skip it, else stick to it. Have confidence in the vision and empower your team enough so that they too feel that they own that idea and hence, will work towards improving it. Every marketing strategy evolves over time and that’s a healthy sign. Any intent, if genuine, will be powerful enough to leave an impact.

Prepare for the marathon, not a sprint
Content marketing is like preparing oneself for a marathon. It’s like going for a workout. Maintaining quality and consistency are vital to a successful content marketing operation. Work on the ideas and the core vision on an everyday basis. Even when the going gets tough, frustrating, or confusing, know that the show has to go on. Discipline is another essential ingredient to successful content creation.