4 Steps To Set Your Content Goals
Before you sit down to write a single word on your next piece of content, you need to set a goal for the content.
That way, you can craft the content around achieving that goal.
How do you set these goals? That’s what you’re about to find out.
Let’s get started…
Step 1: Consider The Big Picture
Before you pick a goal for an individual piece of content, you’ll want to first review your overall goals for your business and your content strategy. That way, you can ensure that your individual pieces of content do indeed support your overall goals.
Ask yourself these questions:
- What do I hope to accomplish with my overall content strategy?
- Who do I want to help with my business and content?
- What type of content will best help me achieve this goal?
- Where should I post this content?
In other words, you want to determine who you will help and how you will help them.
For example, your overall business (and content) purpose might be to help single moms live balanced, empowered lives (while generating income for yourself).
The key here is that you need to be specific with your goals.
For example, what kind of help will your business provide for these single moms? How many sales do you want to make? How much time can you invest in this endeavor?
Pick measurable, specific and realistic goals for best results.
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Then move on to the next step…
Step 2: Determine The Goal For This Content
Now that you’ve got a good understanding of your overall goal (i.e., your business and content strategy), you need to decide the goal for the specific piece of content you’re about to create. For example, do you want this content to:
- Generate traffic? If so, how? (E.G., SEO? Viral Traffic? Other?)
- Build your list?
- Presell a product?
- Get people to join a contest?
- Encourage people to join a webinar?
- Get people to fill out a form (such as a quote form)?
- Get people to call your business?
- Establish your expertise?
- Build your brand?
And similar. Select your goal, and then move on to the next step…
Step 3: Select Content That Fits Your Goal
Now that you know your goal, your next step is to determine the best content format to achieve that goal. For example:
- How to/tutorial.
- Tips list.
- Single tip.
- Opinion article.
- Resource/gear list.
- Live content (webinar).
- Product review.
- Product comparison.
- Case study.
- Motivational story.
- Direct ad.
- Search engine optimized content.
Example #1: If your goal is to generate viral traffic on social media, you’d likely select a short piece of content such as a meme, tip or quick video.
Example #2: If your goal is to presell a product, then there are two approaches:
- Direct sales approach. Here you use a promo piece of content, such as a product review or comparison.
- Indirect sales approach. Here you create “useful, yet incomplete” content. For example, if you’re selling a weight-loss course, then you might offer five weight-loss tips. The content is genuinely useful, but it’s incomplete because it doesn’t completely solve the reader’s entire problem. You can then point them to the course for additional help.
TIP: Be sure to pick a topic that also helps you achieve your goal. You may need to do some market research to be sure this is a topic that your audience really wants.
Pick the format and topic that best fit your goal, and then move on to the next step.
Step 4: Craft Content Around Your Goal
Now that you’ve decided on a goal, format and topic, you can start creating your content. Be sure that you structure your entire content around achieving your goal.
Example #1: If you’re looking to generate sales from your free content for a paid offer, then your free content should include the benefits of the paid offer.
Example #2: If you’re looking to build your expertise, then be sure your content is “fresh” — it should include a unique angle/approach to the topic, and/or unique tips or other information that people can’t find anywhere else.
NOTE: Please keep in mind that no matter what the goal is for your business, the goal for your audience is always to provide useful content that will help them solve their problems, reach their goals and/or enjoy their interests.
No matter what your goal is, you’ll want to end the content with a call to action (CTA).
Your CTA should have the following parts for best results:
- Tell people what to do.
- Tell people how to take that step.
- Give people a good reason to act now.
A good reason to act now may take multiple forms:
- When there is a (real) limited time only offer that would provide additional paid help to your audience. E.G., “This offer ends soon, so grab your copy right now…”
- When there is a built-in deadline that is important to the audience. G., “And do it now, because your wedding day will be here faster than you think…”
- When there is a legitimate danger to the audience if they don’t act quickly. E.G., “Don’t become a victim who gets scammed or robbed — find out how to protect yourself from con artists and thieves when you travel overseas…”
For example, here is a CTA for joining a list:
Your next step is simple: click here to join the mailing list in order to get “Part 2” of this article. And do it now while you can still get this valuable information for free.
Let me share with you a few other templates you can swipe and use:
Purchase a Product:
If you liked these five tips, then you’re going to love getting your hands on the complete guide to [achieving some result]. Click here to get your copy — and be sure to use coupon code [insert coupon code] to save [$ amount]. But hurry and order now, because this offer expires [insert when it expires].
Join a Contest:
How would you like to win [describe two or three of the top prizes]? It’s easy to enter — just [describe how/what to do]. Click here to enter for your chance to win — and hurry, because this contest ends soon.
Share this Content:
If you loved this content, then you’re going to want to share the smiles with your friends. Click here to share it on Facebook, because you know your friends are going to love this as much as you did.
NOTE: A quick word about “urgency” … while there is no doubt that you can forcefully call people to action with manipulation and get higher conversions, please don’t do this. Rather than attempting to talk people into something they don’t really need by pushing their internal “fear of missing out” button, give them a compelling reason to make an intelligent decision to buy your product if it’s something they actually need.
Now, let’s wrap this up…
Some marketers push out content just to fill space. Don’t do that. Instead, create content that helps you achieve a goal. You can get started doing this with your very next piece of content by utilizing what you just learned inside this checklist.
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