Six steps to developing a content strategy

For me, content marketing IS marketing these days. People no longer respond to one-way advertising. They want rich, varied content that fills their emotional cup. From detailed written content and interest-based niche articles to engaging video and inspiring imagery – the consumer demands so much more variety these days.

Before you start creating content for alllll the channels, you need to create a content strategy. I’m not one for massive, 100-page strategies that get put in a drawer and forgotten about, but I am a fan of succinct and flexible strategies. Things are constantly changing and adapting (hello, COVID) but as long as you understand your content pillars, audience and customer journey well, you can adapt to fit the environment.

Here are my top 6 tips for creating a content strategy.

  1. What results do you want to achieve?

Sounds counterintuitive, but think about what you want to achieve before you set out. What is your goal? What’s the KPI? How are you going to measure it? Once you know what you want to achieve, you can decide which form of content will help you achieve that goal.

For example, if you want to create a niche group of loyal customers, you may need to create a range of in-depth content like e-books, feature articles or podcasts. If you want to increase brand awareness and reach new people, you may need to invest in high-quality imagery and video to help capture people’s attention.

  1. Who do you want to reach?

I recently attended a webinar by Kate Toon and one of the things she said really stuck with me. Your audience is not just who you want it to be, it’s also the people that are drawn to you. Before you map out your ideal audience, think about your own USP. What makes you and your product unique, and who would this appeal to? If you’ve got a dry sense of humour and like to have a laugh, think about the type of person this will appeal to. Think about your existing audience, and your desired audience when creating content. Whilst different content may help people at different parts of the customer journey – be true to your brand and yourself throughout. This ensures the content is authentic and showcases your brand at all times.

Look at your current followers on social media, your Google Analytics, your customer reviews and really dig into who your customers are. If you want to go further with this, you can build customer personas within this audience so you can really start to imagine who you’re making content for and who you’re talking to.

  1. What do you already have?

Now you know who you’re talking to and what you want to achieve, you can think about how you’re going to do it. Before you delve into creating new content, it always pays to audit your existing content. I like to create a spreadsheet and have columns for every type of content – images, videos, blogs, articles, media coverage, audio etc. List down everything you currently have, and then you can spot the content gaps.

You’ll soon start to see what content is missing and where you need to focus your attention. Think about the areas you’d most like to fill and focus on those. Are there gaps in the market you could fill? Or are there areas you’d like to excel in?

  1. What are your content themes?

Now we’re into the fun part. It’s time to bring your passion and brand to life through content! To help categorise your content, I’d suggest creating content themes or pillars. Some people call these pain points, but I prefer to think of them as themes – whatever works!

Use what you know about your audience to set themes. What does your audience currently like? What performs best? What part of your story can you not tell without this new content?

Then think about your brand. What are you passionate about and what do you align yourself with? What can you bring to those themes and how can you be a useful voice?

As an example, Tourism Western Australia recently developed the below content pillars for its new Spirit of Adventure campaign.

  1. What’s your customer journey?

The customer journey is a well-versed theory that people move through various stages before converting. This details 5 main stages – awareness, consideration, purchase, usage, and advocacy. There are various versions, and a travel one also exists which is a bit more detailed.

I find it useful to overlay your content pillars and types onto the customer journey. This will help you clearly see which content will appeal to the customer at each stage of the journey. This also helps you spot which parts of the funnel are empty, and where you need to create more content.

For example, your product imagery may be part of your brand awareness / top of funnel activity and will reach potential customers. Your website and blogs may appeal to people in the consideration phase, helping them learn more about you and build more trust. Your advertising or sales pages will catch people in the purchasing stage, so these need to be as efficient as possible.

  1. What are you waiting for?

Now you’ve mapped out your content strategy it’s time to get creative! Let your personality and brand shine through everything you create. Keep the tone of voice and messaging the same throughout, but make sure each piece of content fits into your pillars and serves a purpose in the funnel. Good luck and have fun!

We’ve helped many brands create and execute their content marketing strategy. We can work with you to create a strategy, nail those content pillars and help create your content. We’d love to chat, so feel free to get in touch if you think we can help!

iOS14 Updates and what they mean for your Facebook advertising

The much anticipated Apple iOS14 updates have finally come into play and as expected, they’re going to significantly change Facebook Ad capabilities. The short story is that Apple’s new update will mean iphone users get the lowdown on how apps will use their data and then be prompted to “opt in or “opt out”. If they opt out to sharing their data with external apps like Facebook, that means tracking their behaviour online gets more difficult. In laymans terms, we can’t see what they do or where they go after they click on your ad.

What does that actually mean?

  • We’re going to lose dynamic retargeting as we currently know it and will have less opportunities to retarget in general.
  • Because of this, we expect to see website custom audiences shrinking in size.
  • Reporting is going to take a bit of a battering as Facebook can’t report on the same stats anymore.
  • Our targeting of new interest-based audiences may become more difficult as the data Facebook has about people’s interests will be less.
What can you do?

If you’re a small business using Facebook Ads for basic brand awareness, engagement and conversions, the changes won’t be as catastrophic as you might initially think. It’s the businesses that were running many, many, dynamic retargeting ads for multiple products / multiple events that will feel the changes the most as events are now limited to 8 events per domain. There are a couple of simple things you can do to help make the transition as smooth as possible.

  • Verify your domain as you can still track what happens on a domain you own
  • Aggregate your events – pick the most important ones to your business i.e purchases
  • Stay calm. Monitor your Ads closely and be ready to adapt when needed

Keep a close eye on your ad campaigns over the coming weeks. Watch for things not delivery the results they once were and be ready to jump in and amend / start new campaigns if necessary. Make sure you’re utilising all the data you have such as your engagement audiences, external databases, lookalikes etc. We really need to see how these changes affect ads over the next few weeks before we can make strategic decisions about the future of ads. Just remember, you can switch them off at any point. So if you’re results are tanking, pause the ads and get your researcher hat on.

Take-home messages

The digital marketing landscape is constantly changing and we need to be agile and able to adapt to these changes. They may have us feeling a little unsure about the future right now; but once the dust settles, we can take a look with our strategy hat on and start planning a new way forward. There are huge issues with how data is being acquired and used; so the iOS changes will be a good thing in the long run. We just need to sit tight, consider our options and remember – that’s when new ideas and better ways of working often come to life.

Facebook’s News Ban and How It Will Affect You

Well … it’s been quite a week in Facebook land.

Today, Facebook properly threw its proverbial toys out of the pram by banning any news sharing on the platform. Although this is throwing a spanner in the works for news organisations (and currently the many government/sport/travel pages which also seem to have been removed), this is going to be a pivotal moment for the way we all think about Facebook.

Facebook has made billions of dollars from the words, videos and imagery of others and although taking away the route by which hundreds of thousands of people get their news is harsh, it could be the way to pave a fairer way forward. If you want the full background to how we got here, check out this BBC article.

What can you do?

• Do not panic. Do not delete content. Do not start another page.

• If you’re not a news outlet, but your page has been disabled anyway in the mayhem, you can try and lodge a request through Facebook now. We’re not sure how far that will get you as apparently, there will be an appeals process where you can request a review to have your page reinstated starting on 25 February. That’s hearsay right now though so no harm in lodging the request.

• We’re pretty sure the pages and existing content are still there and it’s highly likely once Facebook gets its ducks in a row, everything will reappear.

• If your page is unaffected, you might want to stop adding external links *just* for a few days…. Although the ban is on news sites, other links like some blogs etc are also being banned. So for now, play it safe and give the links a miss.

• If you’re running Facebook ads, they will still continue to run. Yep, even if you’re a news outlet. Money certainly talks. Some people are ditching their ads as an act of defiance against Facebook, whilst some are actually pumping *more* into their ads to ensure their messages are seen.

• Don’t panic. Utilise your other digital marketing channels to communicate with your audience: Instagram, Pinterest, Clubhouse, your email database, EDMs, Google, SEM and even the phone or post!

This week, why not use the time you would have spent posting on Facebook to think about your digital marketing strategy. Are you too reliant on one platform? Have you worked hard enough to gather your own data and community? If you don’t like Facebook’s code of conduct, do you ethically want to keep spending your money there? Could you switch some of your budget or time to another marketing method that suits your brand better? We’re not saying to do any of those things tonight, but maybe use this as a good opportunity to consider the bigger picture.

Three women sat on a bench

How do I choose a marketing agency?

If your business has grown or changed and you’re looking to outsource your marketing, it can be a daunting time. There are so many “experts” out there, and the cold calling and spam emailing from digital agencies is at an all-time high. So where do you start?

Choosing the right agency is just as important as choosing the right employee – they will become a part of your business, so they need to be the right fit. You want an agency that can focus on long term strategies and help you take your business to the next level. Avoid the sweeping statements, buzzwords and larger than life promises – follow our top tips and you’ll be well on your way to hiring the perfect agency.

  1. Test the chemistry

If you’ve checked out an agency’s website and socials and like the look of what they do, pick up the phone. Appearances can be deceiving so it’s always best to actually speak to someone at the agency to get an idea of who you’ll be working with. Remember, if you do choose to work with them, that agency will become an extension of your business, so you want to make sure you click! See what kind of conversation you have with them – are they actively listening, are they suggesting ideas, are they asking the right questions? You should get a good gut feel from an initial chat that you can’t always get from an email.

  1. Ask questions

Even if you think you know what you want – ie some Facebook advertising – always ask the opinion of the agency and see what they recommend. It’s at this point they can really showcase their knowledge and perhaps come up with other ideas and longer-term strategies to help solve your problem. This kind of open conversation is always a good sign the agency is invested in the success of their work. From their responses, you’ll also be able to gauge if they really understand your business and your objectives, which is key to success!

  1. Outline what you need and expect

Be open and honest about what you want and why you want it. Don’t just say you want to outsource your social media; explain what challenges you’re having and what you want to achieve. That may be lack of strategy, lack of time, no content marketing plan, needing a social selling strategy etc. The more information you can give, the better the agency should be able to tailor a solution that will really fit. This kind of chat may also uncover things that the agency can’t do, and a good agency should tell you that at this stage.

  1. Find out what they can deliver

As about deliverables. How often do the agency report, what KPIs do they normally work to, how often can you expect to hear from them etc. Getting an understanding of what you can expect from them is always a good place to start. They should be honest about what they can and can’t achieve – so if you have a limited budget, the agency should be managing your expectations about what’s a realistic outcome.

  1. Location

Whilst digital marketing can pretty much be done from anywhere, and especially in these COVID times, using a local agency isn’t always essential. However, if you prefer the hands-on approach, chatting through ideas over a coffee and having face to face monthly meetings, you might prefer to use a local agency. Check out where the team are located and ask about their willingness to catch up in person once you start working together.

  1. Case studies

Ask to take a look at some case studies from some of their previous work. An agency should be able to give you examples of their past work, demonstrating experience in either your industry or a comparable campaign. You want your agency to have solid technical experience and if possible, experience in your industry.

  1. Testimonials

If you’re feeling ready to go ahead with your agency, ask if you could speak to a couple of past clients or associates they’ve previously worked with. An agency worth their salt should have a few people that would be willing to chat about their past experiences. This is your chance to find out how the agency is to work with, did the get back to enquiries quickly, were they adaptive and helpful etc.

Once you’ve done the above, you should feel more confident about hiring an agency to work alongside your business. Now the fun can begin!

If you’re looking to work with an agency to amplify your social media presence, create a solid social media and content marketing strategy, or overhaul your copywriting, get in touch today. We’re more than happy to do all of the above and love getting to know our new potential clients!

Three women sat outside a cafe smiling at the camera

Top 10 FREE tools for business owners and digital marketers

We’ve compiled our very favourite apps and tools to help manage your digital marketing and create new content. These amazing extensions, apps and hacks will help keep you organised and save you time and best of all, they’re all totally free!

1.      Canva

Canva is a wonderful tool for those who can’t afford a graphic designer, or just need some basic designs like social media templates creating fast. It’s free and super-easy to use. Even if you’re not that creative, they have heaps of templates that help you create something professional looking and engaging! It’s not just for social media and poster designs, you can also find infographic templates and even powerpoint templates to take your reporting or presentation up a notch!

2.      Facebook Ads Library

This nifty tool is an amazing way to find out what your competitors are up to in the world of social media advertising. Simply pop in their page name, and you’ll get a list of all the ads they’re currently running. This is great to get an idea of what your competitors are doing, and get inspiration from those brands you love.

3.      Trello

This is another great free tool that we use to plan out our social media content. It’s a productivity app, so you can assign tasks, leave notes for people and drop in files and images. But we use it as an online content calendar for those clients who like to approve their content. You can use the calendar view and then drag and drop your content cards to fit. It’s really easy to use and helps keep you organised!

4.      Asana

Asana is the tool we use to manage workloads and assign tasks. This is a great way to stay organised and on top of deadlines. You can email tasks straight from Outlook and then assign tasks by client, theme or employee within Asana. Once again, it’s totally free!

5.      Facebook Ads Manager

We run social media campaigns for most of our clients, so we all use Facebook Ads Manager regularly. Isabelle, our Ads Guru is in there on a daily basis checking and optimising our campaigns to get the very best results. Facebook Ads Manager can be a little confusing at first glance, but once you get your head around it, it’s a really amazing tool FULL of analytics.

6.      Loom

This free screen recording app is great if you need to train or brief people on a task done on a computer. You can record your screen as you do a task, then save and send a link. This is great for those who respond best to visual training, and it is also a good way to build up your induction documents for new starters without having to write a manual.

7.      Pexels

We love this royalty-free image library – it’s full of not-cheesy imagery that you can use for your social media posts, blogs or any other marketing.

8.      Grammarly

This is spell checker for the online environment. If you’re drafting copy straight into Facebook or your website, this will spellcheck your work as you go.  Just like in Microsoft Word, but for all sites.

9.      Dropbox

We use Dropbox to easily store all of our documents, presentations and client content. This is cloud based and we all have a login so we can access up to date copies of everything we need. I also love the phone app so you can easily upload images and videos from your Dropbox to Instagram Stories natively.

10. Answer the public

This is an awesome site that often helps us with ideas for blog posts and copywriting. You can enter a keyword, and it will throw up questions people have asked on search engines and social media. For example, if you pop in cupcakes, you get the following information. Great to spark off ideas for blog topics, Instagram Stories, IGTV’s, podcasts or social media posts!

 

How to change your Zoom background

Is your home office less than beautiful? To create a truly Insta-worthy Zoom visual, did you know you can change your background? Here’s how!

Change your Zoom background on the desktop app

1. In the Zoom app, click your profile in the top right corner, and click Settings.

2. On the menu to the left, click Virtual Background.

3. You’ll see a few default background options provided by Zoom, you’re free to use these, but you still won’t stand out from the crowd of savvy-zoomers.

4. If you want to upload a photo to use as your background, on the same Virtual Background Page, click the + icon next to where it says Choose Virtual Background. A box will pop up allowing you to upload a photo from your computer. Click on the one you want, and it will appear alongside the other pictures as an option for you to choose from.

5. Done!

Change your Zoom background on the mobile app

1. When you log into your account and join a meeting, tap the three dots at the bottom right of the screen to open the More menu.

2. Tap Virtual Background.

3. Select a background from the default options, or upload your own in the same way.

There you have it zoomers, enjoy! For luck, we’ve also chucked in two more extra tips for Zoom to brighten your remote working day.

1 – There is also a beauty filter setting in Zoom so you can live-edit those blemishes and the fact you’ve not worn make-up in days. To turn it on, click the up arrow next to Start Video. Click Video Settings, and under My Video, check the box for Touch Up My Appearance.

2 – If you’re hosting a Zoom meeting, you can export the transcript of the chat box after the meeting. But… be aware, this includes all messages you’ve sent, including private messages to just one other attendee! This only applies to the host, so don’t panic if you were sending NSFW(from home) messages to your colleagues!

Photo of Woman Using Her Laptop

Our best podcast recommendations

Podcasts are a great way to consume content. In these weird Coronavirus times, they’ve become even more valuable and offer another way to keep us feeling connected. Whether you listen to escape, learn or be entertained, we’ve rounded up our favourite podcasts!

From true crime to business news and comedy, there’s something to appeal to everyone! Happy listening!

Amy

I know I should listen to business podcasts, but I feel like I do so much reading and researching online at work, that when I’m listening to a podcast, I just want to be entertained. I gravitate towards UK comedy podcasts, or podcasts presented by comedians. I miss UK humour and think I just like listening to voices from home! I’m loving the Ed Gamble and Matthew Crosby radio X podcast. Fun and irreverent and always makes me actually laugh out loud. Ed Gamble also teams up with James Acaster on Off Menu, where guests are asked to create their dream 3-course meal. Listen to the latest one with Joe Thomas from the Inbetweeners, he’s a hoot.

There are other podcasts I dip in and out of depending on my mood and general mental health. I lost my brother when I was 22, and this is something I still deal with / struggle with daily. If I’m feeling particularly stuck in a bad thought pattern or feeling really down, I often pick a random episode of Griefcast. Cariad Lloyd interviews comedians about their own loss and grief, and it’s strangely comforting and uplifting.

Adam Buxton is my OG podcaster. I love his voice, his humour and his style of interviewing. He always has interesting and entertaining guests and I just love his style.

Isabelle

I am a podcast addict and consumer so many! I love RadioLab as they break down so many different topics in interesting ways. How I Built This with Guy Raz gives a cool peek behind the curtain and explains how some of the largest businesses came to be. I’m an American living in Perth, so I like to listen to The Daily by the New York Times to keep abreast of the news back home.

Perpetual Traffic is another really interesting podcast by the team at Digital Marketer. I always learn something new and get inspiration for my Facebook Ads campaigns! And to relax and be entertained, I’m whizzing through Mogul, which shares stories from the world of hip hop.

Danica

I love anything true crime, so my favourite podcast is an American one called Sword and Scale. Each episode outlines a new true crime, retelling the events and what happened, with the real police calls, recordings, witness statements, and sometimes even the victim’s family and friends being interviewed.

Sam

I love sport and comedy podcasts. I catch every episode of The Grade Cricketer,  a weekly show featuring news, views and interviews with major names from across the cricket scene. For laughs, I love Tiny Meat Gang with Cody Ko and Noel Miller. Wrong, but so right.

I also really like Conan O’Brien Needs A Friend because he has such a funny interview style and some great guests. As a massive Eagles fan, I also never miss the AFL Fantasy Podcast with Roy, Calvin and Warnie.

What are you listening to right now? We’d love to know! If you fancy listening to our MD, Amy in action, head over to Osprey Creative’s podcast and You Tube channel for her recent interview about all things digital and tourism!

cocktail glasses with lemon

THE BEST BARS IN PERTH

We love Perth and we love a cocktail, so we thought we’d share with you our favourite spots for a tipple in Perth. Whether you like a dark, cosy corner to drink in, or to take in some spectacular views from a rooftop bar, here are the spots you’ll find us at on a Saturday night!

Itás picks

  • Strange Company in Fremantle is one of my favourites. It’s got a great vibe and it really reminds me of New Orleans where I studied and lived for years. In this little spot, it feels perfectly acceptable to have a cocktail at any time of day!
  • El Grotto in Scarborough. Hands down TH BEST margaritas I’ve had in Australia. I love their Spicy Margarita and it goes perfectly with their pumpkin tacos.
  • Panama Social in Northbridge. They have a room dedicated to Ricky Martin, need I say more? You’ll be living la vida loca in here – their décor is super cute and the cocktail list is brilliant.

Amy’s picks

  • The Shorehouse in Swanbourne offers the best ocean views, Insta-worthy yellow sun brollies and a cocktail list you can easily spend the afternoon working your way through. Although this place looks swanky, you can walk up straight from the beach with sandy feet and salt in your hair and enjoy a refreshing cocktail. The perfect sundowner!

  • Darling Darling in Fremantle is great if you want to enjoy a stripped-back drinks menu and a dark corner. The bar is based on a seafarer’s tipple spot from the 1800s, for weary sailors who spent years at sea travelling from overseas to Fremantle. It’s dark and cosy, plus you can grab a handful of monkey nuts, crack into them and leave the shells on the floor. A novelty, but a fun one.
  • I’ve got to give a shoutout to my local, the Rose and Crown Hotel in Guildford. This is one of WA’s oldest pubs and it has a gorgeous, leafy beer garden. This is within walking distance from my house, so it’s often the place I come with my husband and our two young boys – one in the pram, one on his bike – for a Sunday afternoon drink and dinner. There’s a lovely atmosphere and usually live music on the weekends.
  • Sneaky Tony’s is also one of my favourites. They do a mean sour cocktail and I’m a sucker for the “knock and give the secret password to get in” gimmick. Make sure you follow them on social for today’s password. 

Danica’s picks

  • Halford Bar is one of my favourite’s in the CBD. It’s a bit tricky to find, but that makes it feel like you’ve stumbled upon something a bit special when you do get there! Top tip, if you’re looking for one of Perth’s hidden laneway bars, follow the cobblestones in the pavement, they’re all there to act as pointers to bars or restaurants!
  • I recently tried out the new bar at Hyde, the latest addition to the Perth hotel scene. They’ve got a gorgeous poolside bar and summery, cool decor. I spent the afternoon munching bottomless fries and drinking white wine. It doesn’t get more “Perth” than that!
  • Another newbie is the Quarter Acre Hotel. It’s in Applecross, so a bit out of the City, but worth the detour. The menu is full of summery food and they do a special Sunday session with DJs and drink specials.

Courtesy of Hyde Perth

What do you think? Where’s your favourite spot in Perth for a tipple? Let us know, we love reccommendations almost as much as we like going out!

HOW TO OPTIMISE VIDEO FOR MOBILE

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the last few years, you’ll know that video is where it’s at for social media marketing.

Not only is video the most engaging medium, but it’s also how people love to digest information on their mobiles. People already spend more time on mobile devices than they do watching TV and Facebook predicts that this year, 79% of the world’s mobile data traffic will be video.

You may have experience in creating video for TV but creating content for social is a different beast. You’re basically creating content specifically for mobile use – so the length, style and creative of the video is very different to that of a TVC.

person looking at you tube on moble

Here are our top 7 tips to optimise your video for mobile.

  1. Engage your audience quickly. Use the first three seconds of your video to entice your viewers with the most compelling, thumb-stopping visual.

 

  1. Don’t wait to show your product – get your brand or product in front of the view immediately so the viewer knows what to expect.

 

  1. Keep content short, snappy and visually exciting.

 

  1. A large percentage of people watch video without sound, so make sure you communicate your story visually so it’s effective with or without sound.

 

  1. If you do have a script, or a more complicated message, add captions or subtitles.

 

  1. To the dismay of videographers everywhere, video should be shot vertically for social. This aspect takes up the most real estate in people’s feeds and looks the most impressive.

 

  1. If you don’t have budget for video, try to create your own animated content using effects, graphics, panning, zooming and slideshows to add an element of movement.

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2020 planner and pen

2020 Special dates for Australian social media and content marketing

The new decade has begun, and we can guarantee a lot of people have vowed this is the year they get their social media strategy in order. The first place to start is with a measurable and concise strategy. Always start with what you want to achieve and who you’re wanting to reach, then get cracking with the creative and exciting implementations.

When it comes to strategic planning, it’s always a good idea to have a content planner which takes into account seasonal trends, key dates, special occasions, product launches and all of your current marketing activities.

To help, we’ve created a list of the key dates that are great to inspire your social media strategy in 2020. From the AFL Grand Final and Easter, to National Tree Day and Black Friday, you’ll find all the important dates you need, which can be overlaid onto your annual planner. They might spark some ideas for your content marketing, or they may prompt you to run a promotion to coincide.

You can download the PDF by clicking on the link below. Happy planning everyone!

2020 Key Dates for Social Media

2020 ket

If you’re still looking for help with your social media strategy or implementation, get in touch. Our team has helped so many brands create strategic and successful content marketing strategies, that achieve real results.

We can help with your planning, run training sessions with your team, or take over management of your content production and social media posting if you’re short on time and want to outsource. You can find a list of the clients we’ve worked with here and get in touch with our friendly team here.

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