You've probably heard this hundreds of times from coaches and creators: When it comes to your business being online, content is king. But what is it really?
What is online content?
Content is any material you share online; this could be social media posts (like Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, or Twitter) or longer-form content like blog posts or other website content.
When you have the right content in place, you attract your ideal audience, and this makes it much easier to convert them to customers or clients.
Why it's important to create online content
Being active online and creating content is extremely important for the success of your business because it lets people know who you are and tells them that you're actively engaged in your business.
Think about it: When you first find out about a business, you'll likely go online and check its Instagram account, Facebook page, or do a Google search for them. If the business doesn't have an online presence or hasn't posted in months, you may overlook them and find another business that does have an online presence. There's a sense of trust established when you see an active and engaged brand.
Creating the right content for your business is important to tell your story and to provide brand details. It lets you tell people what you do, how you help people, and how people will benefit from following your social media pages or purchasing from you.
When the right content strategy is in place, it will:
- Attract your ideal audience (your target market) and make it easier for people who are interested in what you're offering
- Convert followers to customers or clients because they come to know and trust you
- Simplify content creation because you have clear goals
- Build trust and credibility and become known as the expert in your niche
- Connect with other creators for collaboration and monetization
- Drive traffic to your business website
How to create an online content strategy for your business
When creating a content strategy, start by looking at your niche and your target market. Everything you create should cater to both.
Next, think about your first goal for your website and social media profiles.
Is your goal to increase your reach and grow a following on Instagram? If it is, then start planning content that provides your audience with value and benefits them. For example, for a Mindset Coach, a social media post could be 3 ways to overcome imposter syndrome. This is actionable and something that people can do themselves, which is a win-win. Followers are more likely to save it and share it with their friends because it's helpful information that people can use directly.
If your goal is to convert followers to customers, your content could include promotions and content centered around the benefits your service or product provides for your clients. If we look at the example of a Mindset Coach again, this could include a special offer to those who sign up to your program within 24 hours, or the content could be the story of a client and the transformation they went through when they worked with you (before and after).
Let's go step-by-step through creating a content strategy.
The first thing you would look at is the niche you want to target. Let's say you're a mindset coach specializing in helping people overcome imposter syndrome. You would then look at your target market, let's say it's small business owners who struggle with imposter syndrome.
Next, you would survey this target market and find out what people's pain points, struggles, and goals are.
The best way to survey your ideal client is by speaking with them directly. This way you can dive into their answers and understand them on a deeper level. Here are a few questions you could include in your survey:
- What are you struggling with?
- Why are you struggling with this?
- How did this struggle come about?
- How would you feel if you overcame this struggle?
- What are your goals?
- What's holding you back from achieving your goals?
Take time to understand their answers and pinpoint their pain points and goals.
Once you have clarity on this, you can start creating content that will resonate with your ideal client. For instance:
- A blog post around your ideal client's pain-points and how to overcome them
- An Instagram post on how your coaching helps this target market (using their pain-points within the post)
- A relatable Instagram reel about the feeling of imposter syndrome around your own business as a mindset coach
- A post sharing your journey struggling with imposter syndrome and how you overcame it
As you come up with content ideas, you'll want to keep track of them and to start planning their release. One simple way to create a content is to start with this Excel template for a yearly overview editorial calendar from Microsoft Create.
Digging deep into your target market's psyche will help you produce content ideas to attract your audience.
Another way to find content ideas is through research.
If you were a nutritionist, the following are some questions you could research to find out more about your target market and create content that resonates:
- What is my ideal client struggling with and what do they want to achieve
- How does my ideal client feel right now (before working with a nutritionist)
- How does my ideal client want to feel after working with a nutritionist
- Why would my ideal client want to work with a nutritionist
- How can I as a nutritionist help them
Where to find content strategy inspiration
Along with running surveys and doing research, below is a list of where to look for content ideas to help you create better content for your business that will resonate with your ideal audience:
|FAQs||Look at frequently asked questions that your ideal client has. If one person has a question, you'll find there are many more people who have the same question too. Create content around those questions.|
|Pain points||Strong content that converts followers to customers addresses their pain points. Find out what your ideal customer or client is struggling with and create a blog post or social media post to address it.|
For a nutritionist, their ideal client's pain point could be incorporating a healthy diet into their busy lifestyle. With this information they could create content like quick healthy recipes or weekly menu plans with easy meal options.
|Surveys||Running a survey every few months is key to understanding your ideal customer's needs and how you can help them.|
As your business evolves, so will your ideal customer – so being aware of where they currently are in relation to your business will help you create up to date content that caters to them.
|Websites||Websites that specialize in helping you discover content ideas for your niche are fantastic resources and make life a lot easier. Here are a few I go to for inspiration:|
|Blogs||Search for blogs of people in similar niches and read blog posts to find inspiration for your posts.|
|Customer comments||Dive into the comments section of your and your competitor's posts and read what people are saying.|
This is a great way to give users exactly what they want. You're providing value and benefiting your audience massively.
|Podcasts||Whatever your specialty or niche, there's probably a podcast about it!|
Listen to podcasts for inspiration. Make note of tips and ideas to create content around.
|YouTube||There are millions of content ideas on YouTube.|
Type your niche into YouTube search and explore what comes up. Take inspiration from what you specialize in and create content around this by putting your own spin on it.
|Your journey||One of the most important pieces of content you can share is your journey to owning your own business. This is inspirational and relatable. It also builds trust and authority.|
Share how you got to where you are today, your struggles and your wins.
It's not always easy to have a flow of content ideas that allows you to post consistently. By staying up to date with what's happening in your niche, answering questions your ideal audience may have, and having a list of places to go for inspiration can help you stay inspired and overcome creative blocks to maintain consistently great content.