You know the feeling you get when you get a new client who needs a content strategy for a niche you know nothing about. Without knowing the details of the industry, including the competitions shortcomings, it can be a challenge to create a successful campaign. It's important to increase your knowledge and develop a strategy that will succeed - but how do you do that when you know nothing about their industry?
Suppose a company like HydroWorx, a world leader in aquatic therapy equipment, consulted you for your content strategy services. With limited knowledge on their products, services or goals, it would be difficult to formulate a content plan. The following steps would be the best way to find success for HydroWorx, or any client whose industry you might come into cold.
Research, Study, and Educate
From the start, your knowledge about aquatic therapy equipment may be extremely basic; therapy pools are used to help facilitate recovery to athletes and patients. This knowledge alone would not be enough to create a comprehensive content plan for HydroWorx.
With any client or niche, the first step is to do extensive research. For example, you would want to read in depth about what aquatic therapy is, who uses it and what the pros and cons are. What challenges do companies in this industry face? Further, read up on current trends regarding your clients services and the demand that is out there for their product.
With a broader understanding of your clients niche, the next step is to understand their product/services specifically. It would be important to know HydroWorxs history and mission, where their pools are currently being used and the audience they want to specifically target. Moreover, learning in depth about any client is always essential to their success, regardless of their industry. Dont be afraid to dive in and learn things about your client you may not have even considered. Your client will be impressed with the knowledge you are bringing with you to the table; if you have done your homework, they will put more trust into the success of your campaign.
As your broad and specific research comes together, the next steps are to study and educate. It is unrealistic to have every aspect of the clients niche memorized, but studying to understand it in depth is vital. As you identify trends among the industry and competitors, try to make meaningful inferences. If you can identify a shortcoming of another aquatic therapy equipment provider, you will be able to capitalize on it for HydroWorx. From there, educating your entire team on the key points of the campaign is also an important step in creating successful content.
Plan, Develop, and Implement
As with any content strategy, the next step is to make a specific plan for HydroWorx or your client. Take your new knowledge on their target market, the product they provide and their goals, and create a successful strategy. With the plan in place and approved by HydroWorx, the developing and implementing stages should ensue.
Developing is an important step in the content strategy process as it allows your team to consistently stay on top of trends in your niche market. Once you have researched, educated and planned, implementation of your strategy should be the easy part. Build the content you need to add to their site; reach out to good opportunities to spread the message about the brand; do whatever it takes to help your client succeed.
Track, Analyze, and Improve
When it comes to creating content for an unfamiliar niche market, it is very important to track the success and failures throughout. Even with all that research under your belt, you may find a part of your strategy doesnt quite fit in with this new target market. Tracking these results will be essential in really mastering the industry.
While tracking results, have specific goals to measure in the analyzing step. For HydroWorx, a goal might be to increase the number of inquiries about their aquatic pools by 50%. As you track and analyze, you should tweak and learn from your successes and shortcomings until your goals are met. Your promotional campaigns outcome is at the mercy of your constant tracking and improving. Again, since this is a market you are unfamiliar with, analyzing and goal setting become even more important.
At the end of any campaign or strategy, improving should be the ultimate goal. To stand out among your competition as a marketer, it is essential to be able to deliver successful results in every field or industry. When your goals are met for this particular niche client, take the time to analyze your successes and failures, with feedback from the client, to take with you. Through researching, planning and tracking, you will have the upper hand in tackling any niche market that comes your way.