Content marketing in 2020 is taking center stage in most digital marketing strategies. Only 69% of B2B marketers have a documented strategy.
Agencies, small-business owners and in-house marketers in 2020 must know how to craft an effective content and SEO strategy. Crafting a strategy is about much more than keyword research and content creation, it has evolved into so much more. You want to document your digital marketing strategy so that you can stay focused, monitor results, and report to clients or leadership.
Most agencies use project management tools such as Trello, Basecamp, or countless others. Pair these tools with SEO specific tools such as Moz, Ahrefs, and SEMrush, and you have what you need to report and manage tactics. So how does a master campaign document fit into the above tools?
As a digital marketing agency or in-house marketing expert, documenting your approach lets you provide your client or leadership with a digital marketing blueprint. They will know the exact steps you are taking to achieve the results and they will be much more willing to buy into your approach. While the project management and reporting tools are great for running a campaign, a master document helps organize thoughts, develop targets, and keeps strategy focused. It also helps clients and leadership understand strategy by seeing how it was developed.
What should a campaign document look like and what should it include?
Website URL and Asset Inventory
Your SEO and content marketing documentation should include website URLs and an asset inventory. This inventory can include base information such as every page’s title, meta, and H1. It is also helpful to include canonicals, 301/302 redirects, and 404s. SEO Screaming frog is an incredible tool to help pull all of your crawl data together.
You may also want to add your target designations, milestone or last touch dates, as well as experiments and optimization dates.
The website inventory is a great tool to help systematically work through a website by identifying targets, run SEO experiments, and eliminate site errors.
Keyword research is an essential aspect of your SEO strategy, so it makes sense it should live in your strategy documentation. Keyword research should include a topical breakdown of all target keywords, search volume, and keyword difficulty. You can also breakdown keyword research in your documentation to include the buying cycle stage and content type.
Keeping keyword research in your campaign documentation allows you to have direct access to new keyword opportunities that are slated for targets in the future. Having KWR in your documentation also powers the next piece to the campaign document, the KW-URL Map.
A keyword-URL map is a critical piece of the document you don’t want to overlook. We have found that clients and leadership absolutely love this portion because it ties the keyword strategy directly to assets on the website. It truly allows them to see the correlation between keywords and content.
The Keyword-URL Map should designate all target URLs and have paired keywords that each URL is focused on optimization. For the best possible results, you can include search volume and other optimization notes in this section.
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As a business owner, taking this step keeps you focused and on track. As an in-house marketing expert or marketing agency, having a keyword-URL map shows your client that you have a solid plan.
Planning your content strategy is both a short and long-term project. Keeping content strategy well documented helps to ensure you stay the course and publish regularly. Your content calendar can cover blog posting, interior site content, off-site content, or content assets.
Your content calendar includes content status, keywords and topics you will write about over time, and you list the dates on which you plan to publish each new post.
Social Media Publishing
Document content ideas and when you wish to share certain posts on your social media properties. Include posts by topic, platform, and also include media required. This social media calendar can directly correlate with your other content calendars to boost reach and tie multiple mediums together.
Use this tool to also showcase results. Assign likes, shares, and engagements to each post to reference which post type is getting the best results.
An off-site activity can include link building and off-site publication targets. This is a great way to keep offsite activity organized. The off-site activity can also include a link intersect report along with content targets for off-site publication.
Initiative tracking is an important aspect of your digital marketing documentation. You list the results of your tests and experiments in this section, and you will get an even better idea of what works and what does not.
Document the results of split tests and any ideas you might have to improve the outcome in the future. When you look back at the tests you ran in the past, consider what parts of them delivered the best results so that you can keep using them as you move forward. You will also cut out parts of your plan that did not provide the outcome you had in mind.
Documenting your digital marketing and SEO campaigns improves your results more than you might think. Rather than just creating content that focuses on certain keywords, you create a blueprint that lets you track what works well and what does not push you toward your desired outcome.
You can look at past documentation when deciding how you will approach future content marketing strategies, saving a lot of time, energy and money along the way. Having clear documentation is the best way to implement an SEO plan that does the job right.