By Tom Kuder
Your journey from beginner to skilled practitioner
In my online business I teach entrepreneurs how to use content marketing to start and grow a business.
I’ve found that most entrepreneurs, freelancers and startup owners are smart, skilled and motivated people. Most have at least heard of content marketing. And many are intrigued by its potential to build a vital connection to their audience that can drive sales.
Yet most have no clue where to start.
Indeed, the sheer volume of information about content marketing can be overwhelming, causing many to pause before jumping in.
But as Mark Twain said, “The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into smaller manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one.”
That means you have to take a first step. And then another one. And then another.
A 5-step process
Startups can get started with content marketing by following a journey through 5 stages of development. These stages are designed to transform a newbie to an accomplished content marketer in a logical way.
If you’re excited about content marketing and see its potential for promoting your business, then it makes sense to follow a defined path to learn its most important strategies and tactics.
But before we get into the 5-stage journey, let’s take a look at this question:
What’s more important: strategy or tactics?
General Sun Tsu, the 800BC author of The Art of War, had this to say:
Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory. Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.
The lesson here is pretty obvious: both strategy and tactics are necessary for success.
Content marketing is no exception to this rule. To succeed along your journey you’ll need to pay attention to both the “why” and the “how” of using content marketing in your startup. That will give you strategies for focusing and aiming your efforts toward victory. And it will give you tactics for creating and enhancing your content to avoid business defeat.
So tell me, what is Content Marketing again?
My basic definition for a content marketing beginner:
Content marketing is simply the process of providing people with information they care about in order to form a trusting business relationship.
Practically speaking that means crafting your business’s web pages. Writing educational blog posts. Tweeting about your business ideas and commenting on others’ social posts. Posting your own articles on social media. And publishing ebooks, white papers, videos, podcasts and emails.
They’re all good communication tactics. But unless they provide people with information they care about, they’re not good content marketing tactics.
Which brings us back to strategy:
What are you trying to accomplish with content marketing?
Whom are you trying to serve?
What does your audience care about?
These questions are fundamental to the first two stages every content marketing beginner should begin with: Focus and Aim.
5 stages of content marketing: Focus, Aim, Create, Convert, Enhance
Focus is the first stage in becoming an accomplished content marketer. It means you’ve determined what your specific business niche is going to be, your goals for using content marketing to promote Go to the full article.
Source:: Business 2 Community