February 02, 2014

5 Reasons WHY your content strategy sucks

Content is king.

The future of social media and brand lies in two core aspects; the ability to leverage data and creation of effective, and relevant content for your audience.

Today, most retail brands are still trying to figure out their niche. Even large ones.

What should they post on Facebook?

Do they need to be present on every social media channel?

Who manages content?

How is content developed and approved?

How do you best leverage social media?

... the list goes on. 

As an emerging retailer, you have a distinct advantage over large retailers. 


Large retailers cannot pivot as quickly as independents.

Content creation and approval takes ages and doesn't fit within the typical core processes that exist.

Lastly, the pressure to hit sales and profit targets tends to push many retailers to push too much product-based and promotional content on their channels.

Just because you have the agility advantage working in your favour, doesn't mean that you are knocking social media content creation out of the park.

Does your content strategy suck?

Here's 5 reasons why your current content strategy may suck.

{1} It's not targeted nor relevant

If you're struggling with who your target customer is, this will be a massive hindrance to your social media strategy. At the heart of every content strategy is the definition of WHO you are speaking to. Sometimes this is different than who actually buys your product.

For example, a brand such as Lululemon speaks to yogis. Hard core yogis, runners, athletes. However, their core buyer is not a hardcore athlete. They tend to be more casual wearers of Lululemon. Still, Lululemon publishes content that inspires their core buyer but speaks to their hardcore yogi.

Determining your target is the first step. Next, serve up relevant content. What does your audience LOVE to see? Is it healthy recipes? Workout ideas? Fashion tips? Travel stories? Honing in on this requires trial and error, test and learn. Keep an eye on the content that is shared and engaged with often and heavily.


{2} You're only talking about you

This is one of the #1 offences I see on social media channels for retailers and e-tailers. Scan through your past 10 posts, what % of posts are ALL about your products or promotional? If it's more than 60%, you need to rethink your strategy.

I tend to follow the rule of 5:1.  5 posts of value added/relevant content. 1 product focused or promotional post

Keep your audience guessing, engaged and wondering what's coming next otherwise people will click that "unfollow" button very quickly.


{3} You're not adding value or borrowing too much content

Sharing relevant content to your target is the first step. Adding value is another. If you're constantly sharing someone else's content ... this is also a problem. It's okay to share a few posts here and there on social channels but even better is developing your own content.

So how? Brainstorm some ideas of relevant content, and freaking write it! It's easy. Start with one post a week, and go from there. 

Invite other relevant content developers to help you, and provide them with link backs.

Developing original content on your blog/website will help your SEO, as well as build a more loyal following for your brand.


{4} You're inconsistent

You haven't posted on Facebook in 3 days. Twitter, a few weeks. Pinterest - you may have pinned something months ago.  Inconsistency on social media is the kiss of death.

It's better to NOT be on a channel, than to show up periodically. 

If you're feeling overwhelmed by the task of managing many social media channels, try to focus on the 1-2 channels that drive 80% of your business and use these as your starting point.


{5} You lack a plan

If you're finding yourself scrambling daily to develop or post content, you are suffering from a lack of content planning. This is very common.

Successful retail brands develop content calendars. 

Given the transient nature of social media, developing out a full social media calendar past a full month can be difficult. Depending on the events of the world, sometimes you have to pivot your strategy on a daily basis.

Build a loose framework for 1-2 months on a Google Calendar or whiteboard. Mark down important retail holidays, product launches, and develop some topical ideas/themes for at least the week. 


What's ONE thing you can start to do immediately to improve your content strategy? Share it in the comments!

Happy crafting!

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