How to use the Content Cycle to enhance your content strategy

Watch the discussion where team members from Fresh Egg discussed the benefits of using the Content Cycle.

Taking part in the discussion were: David Somerville, strategy director, Nicky Moody, project director, Callum Grantham, senior content and social media manager, and Graham Marsh, senior web analyst.

1. What value do you place on plain English in content?

Lots - writes for 9 year-olds (by which they mean people with a vocabulary of 15k words). Even in technical fields, there's research to suggest people respond better to plain English.

Try not to make your users think too much about what you mean. Plain English also goes for plain communications, which means picking the right medium; don't write an essay length guide for 14 year-olds who like TikTok; don't create a TikTok dance to explain nuclear fission - or maybe do!

2. Does Google's E.A.T. make any difference to getting 100% unique content?

E-A-T isn't a factor in the algorithm, so it shouldn't. Use it as a guide. Look at what your competitors have done and use your audience insights to find a different way to approach it.

3. What best practice advice can you give for planning content across all digital channels?

Alignment - make sure you're doing the same things but in a way that's appropriate for users of that channel.

It's a mix of planning and repurposing: when you're planning content, be aware of how you can use it across different channels and how you need to tailor it to different user states across those channels, e.g. on Twitter, people more likely to read, on Instagram, repurpose as a story or for IGTV.

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Our content audits provide explicit recommendations on what content to improve, create, and remove in order to engage with your key audiences.

4. How can you maintain agility as part of a content strategy and respond to unforeseen events or new industry challenges?

It's part of the Content Cycle - Refine.  Maintain awareness of your core audience, by monitoring for new behaviours then research further and update your approach. 

Make sure you keep an eye on feedback you get from customers to consider as part of this too - whether that's in the form of emails, social media comments or even phone calls. All of this can be valuable to help shape the content.

Agility can also be built in by having access to additional resources if you need to suddenly increase content production or change direction. Also having a multi-skilled team is great. If you have people who can quickly produce video content, for example, then this might help you to get content out there that gains traction.

5. Do you think there should be more emphasis on creating content for any particular stage of the buyer journey, or should content be created for each stage equally? Also, how do you think is best to cycle content for each stage - should it be awareness one? Do you think there should be more emphasis on creating content for any particular stage of the buyer journey, or should content be created for each stage equally?

You'll need content to some extent across the whole journey, but your research should help inform key stages. By understanding what content your customers/users need at each stage (and how good your existing content is at each stage), you can then decide where to focus your efforts. 

We often find that the latter stages in the customer journey (for example 'Use' or 'Advocacy' are forgotten or focussed on less), therefore it might be the case you need to focus on these more.

Use your data and also your overall business objectives to help provide the direction. For example, if you have no problem in getting people to your website, but the conversion rates are lower, then you may need to focus on your website content, including CTAs.

6. What is ONE simple strategy that you would use in your content to grab attention?

A tricky question to answer! Ultimately it needs to be whatever is going to resonate best and engage your audience. This is likely to differ for brands and organisations. 

Testing your messaging - whether this is headlines on email or page titles on webpages - means you can start to understand more about your audience. Devise a list of hypothesis to test, run the tests and analyse.

And it's worth considering 'human truths' when you're thinking about what could grab attention. Some common human truths include:

  • Humans have a limited attention span
  • Humans are visual
  • Humans respond to emotion
  • Humans like routine
  • Humans are attracted to beauty

Useful links related to the webinar

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