A Framework For Amazing Content Marketing
What is a Content Marketing Matrix?
A Content Marketing Matrix is a framework from which a content marketer can consider and plan how best to be there for their target audience with the right content at the right time and in the right place.
The Molecule Content Marketing Matrix Template
We’ve found that most examples of content marketing matrix nearly always show a bias towards your own digital media and competencies as opposed to how consumer behave in the real world.
This matrix is an example of a Molecule Content Marketing Matrix Template, it’s deliberately very consumer centric and we’ve found it to be a highly effective ideation and planning tool. Here are descriptions of the key components.
Your Media vs 3rd Party Media
Content Marketing Plans are often guilty of thinking that content can only be published on the company’s own digital media properties.
It’s true that these are the easiest to control but they are not the only opportunities, which is why the matrix moves from Your Website to Social Media Properties, Affiliate / Partnership Marketing, and Independent Media.
Under the consumer journey you can see where your various media options are typically found. These should be re-arranged based on your type of business. For example if you are a comparison website, this part of the matrix will be different.
Front Of Mind vs Purchase Journey vs Post Purchase Content
The types of content marketers produce also often has a bias towards their background or preference as opposed to the consumer, and we often see gaps that are significant revenue opportunities.
Front Of Mind Content
Front of Mind Content is about having a constant voice and being part of ‘today’s conversation’. This is often based around the news agenda. It can also be promotional based content like competitions that used across your website and social properties.
Purchase Journey Content
Purchase Journey Content is where the money is made. Different markets have different journeys with the complexity being based on the level of research needed to make sure the ‘best’ product is bought at the ‘best’ price.
Where and how people start depends to a large extent on the level of expertise they hold in the area as well. Are they familiar with the language, brands and features that a product category has before starting the journey.
Purchase Journey Content also is rarely limited to just your website. For example, if a comparison is being sought, the consumer is likely to be building a list of possible options and a company’s own website would rarely be trusted to offer an unbiased opinion. This means as content marketers we need to understand the significance of this stage a plan how best to be found on key third-party websites.
The same is often true for the consumer looking to reduce the risk of buying the wrong product. They turn to content that contains reviews and expert opinion, although there are lots of great examples where companies have controlled this stage on their own website really well.
Content Marketing Tactics & Content Quantity
Within the whole matrix you’ll find a wide array of tactics and content types that can be used at different stages of the journey.
We’ve added the concept of Content Quantity (Few to Many Pages) to the matrix as well here. You’re likely to have relatively few calculators compared to Q and A content. But these along with content like: guides, tips and how-to’s, inspirational ideas, research and white-papers content are all part of being there when consumer are Information Seeking.
When you’re looking for content marketing ideas it’s important to think about the consumer you’re targeting, the content they look for, the places they want to find it and of course the content itself and the formats.
You’ll find it easier to do this is using a matrix like our Content Marketing Matrix. Not only will you find a way of thinking about the consumer and content marketing channels, you’ll find content marketing ideas.
20 Content Marketing Ideas For the Whole Consumer Journey
The news agenda is constantly changing and knowing about and taking part in the news agenda with your own spin and perspective is a great way of keeping you front of mind.
Promotional activity can create awareness and buzz. There’s also a whole community of websites and people you can promote a good competition with. You can even get follow-up content and PR from the entries.
Games and Quizzes
Quizzes come in many forms. A fun one that went viral was this one on OCD. When you do it the chances are you’ll forward it to a friend to try as well.
Webinars are a great B2B marketing tactic. You’ve a reason to email your email database, you get sign-up data, you get to communicate with attendees and not only inform, but do polls. And of course you can record them to allow people to watch them later, and promote on video channels.
Inspiration & Ideas
Having content that inspires people is a huge marketing commodity and often does really well in social and link building campaigns.
Category pages are the page in a website’s information architecture that are containers for large groups of other pages, often contained within sub-categories. These pages are critical to get right as they are a key part of how consumers navigate websites and they also tend to appear prominently in search engines and are therefore prominent website entry points.
Definitions and Questions & Answers
Lots of products, services, features and jargon leave a consumer needing to find out information before they can progress confidently through the purchase journey.
The content that supports these information queries are often category pages, definitions, and Q and A content. For example, what’s a 4K TV? It’s a feature of a TV but not too many people could tell you what it is specifically and whether it’s an essential must-have feature.
The added bonus is, if it’s great content, these pages also get linked to a lot as well.
Guides, Tips & How-to’s
We all use the internet to educate and guide our decision making, especially when we’re making high value and complex purchase decision. From white goods and high-tech, from financial services to software, choice, complexity and risk is everywhere and with the right content you can be there to help. If you are you’ve a good chance of being able to be in the mix at the business end of a potential purchase.
Research & White-papers
If you can invest in doing research and package it up in the many format options available that include, infographics, white-papers, ebooks, slideshares, webinars, and press releases, you’ve something to promote hard and get lots of marketing miles from.
When a consumer wants to calculate something that’s more complicated than simply using the calculator on your phone, they often turn to Google to find one. Some of the most valuable calculators are in financial services. For example, if you’ve ever applied for a mortgage you’ve probably searched for and used a mortgage calculator. It’s no surprise then that the competition to have your calculator found is fierce. Like all content that is useful, calculators are also highly linked to by other websites.
Top, Best, Good Lists
When a consumer is narrowing down a consideration set and looking to reduce the risk of making a bad decision, they often turn to the authors of content that have done the hard yards for them. The influence of these posts on a consumer purchase decision should not be underestimated. Again, useful content is linked to content.
Comparisons are subtly different to top, best, good lists as they are often not trying to tell you which is best, just simply allowing a consumer to compare products across consistent comparative dimensions. Common comparisons are price, size, weight, colour, or a feature (yes or no).
Reviews & Ratings
Consumers love to use reviews and ratings as a way of assessing the likelihood of making a regrettable purchase and increase the probability of making a good one. Websites that specialise in reviews and ratings are common, as are the use of reviews and ratings on retailer websites. Knowing where and how your products and services are being reviewed and rated is an essential part of managing the consumer journey, as it having a strategy for applying some control.
For everything a company sells, there’s going to be at least one product page and where a product has features, they can get their own page as well.
Consumers love a bargain and hate it when they bought something at full price in one shop when it was cheaper in another. Having a sale page content strategy can help you seal deals and acquire a new customer.
User Generated Content
User Generated Content or UGC is content that you don’t fully control but can be plentiful and help you have a depth of content that supports both acquisition and post purchase content strategies. UGC examples include Forums, Community Q & A and Reviews.
Customer Help Pages
Supporting a customer after their purchase well is how you create loyalty and serious brand equity. Great low cost ways of doing this is through content.
OK, it’s an obvious one but we’ve all tried and failed to find the contact details of a company we want to do business with.
Molecule use data to help us create a more complex version of a matrix like this for our clients and we know the impact it can have on performance in the real world, but have never really sought feedback from industry experts. What do you think?
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