A 3-Step Guide to Setting Up a Content Campaign

By now you have probably realized there is an overload of content, especially digitally given the COVID-19 outbreak. Access to content is instant and mailboxes are full.

Every marketing team is looking for the latest and greatest offerings for their audience and sponsors. Everyone wants to have the best, regardless of the program, whether it be newsletters, webinars, events, email promotions, or any other marketing offering.

Not only do we all want the best content, we want it right the first time. If a marketing team misses the mark on a content campaign, it is nearly impossible to redo the efforts once they are out there.

So how do you get it right the first time? Here are three steps to you need to take to create guaranteed strong content. Seriously, it is that easy

1. Talk to Your Audience

There are three words you need to remember when talking to your audience to help create the right content for them:

  • What
  • How
  • When

Let’s pretend for a second that you are one of the unfortunate publication companies that must either cancel or postpone an event. We will use this as an example in crafting the three words into questions aim toward your audience.

“What type of content do you want to learn about during the virtual event?”

List out the content you had already set for you in-person event to make sure this matches digitally. Believe it or not, there is a good chance it defers based on the way it is delivered.

This question helps to check whether your content is sound or if it needs to be adjusted.

“How would you like this content to be delivered?”

Give ideas and ask specifically a yes or no to each – keep it simple.

This question confirms that people will in fact attend a digital event. Do not assume that just because someone was willing to go to a live event that they will attend a digital one. These are two completely different tactics and should be treated as such.

“When is the best time to run this virtual event? Pick which day/time is best”

If you had an event that spanned over a weekend, you will absolutely need to make sure your potential attendees want to be a part of this. People have kids at home, plans with family (if lockdown is over once the event goes live), and other obligations that will interfere with the weekend.

This question ensures you are delivering at the appropriate time that fits you target audience.

Finding information doesn’t have to be difficult. These three questions are simple, but extremely valuable to any company planning a content campaign such as a digital event.

2. Implement the Plan

This is the shortest step and by far the hardest for executives to follow. DO EXACTLY WHAT YOUR AUDIENCE IS TELLING YOU TO DO.

Do not over think it.

If your audience wants the event over a weekend, run it over the weekend. If your audience wants the event run during a Tuesday afternoon, run it on a Tuesday afternoon. If your audience doesn’t want a virtual event, do not run a virtual event.

Just because you had an in-person event that needed to be postponed/cancelled due to COVID-19 doesn’t mean you absolutely need to have a digital event to replace it. Your sponsors will be more grateful for you taking the time to get feedback from your audience. By being open with sponsors about the information gathered, you can find ways to use their dollars in programs that are successful and that your audience truly wants.

The data collected from your audience is powerful. Listen to it.

3. Follow Up

Make sure to prepare a follow up survey with your audience, as well as your sponsors. Being able to compare this data with what was gathered before any content campaign will help solidify your decisions to go in a certain direction or to identify where adjustments need to be made.

If you did in fact listen to your audience from the first step, implemented the plan as the audience recommended, but still receive bad results in the follow up survey, then you know that the delivery may be at fault or that writers/presenters may need to be adjusted going forward.

Some ideas on ways to successfully follow up with your audience:

  1. Online Survey – These are quick and easy.
  2. Focus Group via Zoom – Get a sponsor to be a part of the discussion or editorial team. This helps put faces to brand names and provides more personality.
  3. Thank You Incentives – Provide these to people who are willing to take the time to be a part of the follow up process.

Beyond Digital Events

The example used for this post was for a digital event, but this can and should be implemented for any kind of content campaign. All that needs to be done is to alter the wording for each question with the specific tactics for your current project and you have a simple 3-step guide to get the foundation built for your next content campaign. 

Asking these three questions helps cut through all the noise of content that is being delivered every day. Keep asking your audience what they want, how they want it, and when to ultimately lead to your brand’s success.