Content Marketing

What is content marketing?

Content is the currency of the Internet. Content serves three functions for your audience: it informs them, it entertains them and provides them with an opportunity. These are all very important reasons why content is the single most important feature of your inbound marketing strategy. It advocates on your behalf and has the ability to persuade prospects and customers alike through a unified, simple message.

Before you are able to win over and create brand evangelists, we become your biggest advocates and share our enthusiasm about your brand through creative content marketing. Our content stylists craft a true, honest narrative about your brand. We create a desired, authentic brand identity that will differentiate you from others and give customers a native experience that is true to who you are.

Content marketing, at its core, is an effective outreach campaign. Content marketing is the means by which you introduce your brand to your intended audience and accelerates lead flow. An effective campaign is when you are able to tell your story. Your story should convey your mission and vision in a way that connects with your audience. We will diversify your lead generation through simple and authentic storytelling that leaves a memorable impression. Good stories stir up emotions and result in meaningful connections. With fine-tune and hone your story, and deliver it to the world.

We build trust between you and your audience to let them know you understand their challenges and have the right solutions. We help raise awareness about your brand and increase web presence. The Rank Squad builds new levels of brand advocacy through content marketing. We create and deliver a marketing road map that is interactive and has engaging content at all stages of the buyer’s journey.

We simplify your marketing message and streamline your content to give a clear, concise image of who you are and where you’re headed. We aim to close the gap between art and science, reason and emotions and help you build a direct bridge to your target audience. The Rank Squad provides your users a native experience. Through integrated content marketing services, our creative thinkers and makers will help cut through the digital noise and help you stand out.

What is Content Marketing? Content marketing is a marketing strategy where you create and distribute high-value and engaging content that will help convert prospects into paying customers.

The Content Marketing Process

AUDIT
We perform a qualitative analysis of your content that will uncover the gaps that exist in your story. We see what’s missing and complete your story.

CREATE
In addition to publishing fresh content, we also repurpose your content. We distribute digital assets across diverse channels that will unify your branding message.

STRATEGIZE
We deliver the right content at the right time. We ensure that you are meeting your customer at important checkpoints across their journey.

GOVERNANCE
Content governance is a set of guidelines that determines the when, where, why and how of content publishing and creation. We make sure that these guidelines are achieved at every stage.

We create, manage and safeguard content

At The Rank Squad, we help create a sound content marketing strategy that will not only draw in your target audience but is designed for search engines. At the core, we are not only here to meet benchmarks – we want your brand to benefit the end user, by creating a long-term and meaningful relationship.

Our marketing team will help you throughout the entire content marketing spectrum – from branded content, strategic narratives and eye catching visuals. We build a smart road map that emphasizes interactive storytelling and gives life to your cornerstone content. With our team of marketers and graphic designers, our content marketing services will help you achieve the following goals:

◌ We leverage content marketing to promote your brand image and build your online presence.
◌ We use content marketing to increase your visibility in search engines (Google, Bing and Yahoo!) and give your audience what they want at different stages of the buyer’s journey.
◌ We use content to transform visitors into brand evangelists, who are passionate about what you do and help spread the word about your company.

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The stages of content marketing.

Content Audit
We analyze your content with your goals and readers in mind. Our content strategists and information architects will qualitatively assess your content to ensure it communicates key messages and is easy to understand.
◍ Identify and close loopholes in your story and unify your message to deliver consistency and authenticity.
◍ Tone is specific to your core audience i.e. consumer-facing content should be straight-forward and technical content should convey expertise.
◍ Delivering to the right audience on the right platform and using the right brand voice at the right time.

Content Creation
Going beyond captivating copy-writing and periodic publishing, we re-purpose content around strategies that help inform, entertain and convert prospects. We help build online reputation, create brand loyalty and generate leads.
◍ A rich content mix that focuses on solving problems for customers with journey-based marketing in mind.
◍ Create online loyalty by creating a fresh stream of content that is purposeful and focused on problem solving.
◍ Differentiate your brand that will make you an industry leader through innovative content pieces and increasing social shares.

Content Strategy
There is a lot of digital noise and informational clutter on the Internet – we organize and simplify your content. We identify your business goals and have content marketing serve these specific objectives while enhancing the user experience.
◍ We heighten your reach and reputation by focusing on content that solves problems and drives leads through your entire content lifecycle.
◍ We plan an editorial calendar where content is published on a periodic basis to the right audience at the right time.
◍ We organize digital content with a taxonomy-based approach to filter and manage digital assets.

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CONTENT AUDIT
At the cornerstone of sound content marketing is a comprehensive content audit – we will locate and collect your content assets. Our team will perform a qualitative analysis of your digital content that will uncover the gaps that currently exist in your storyline. We fix what is broken and will not try to recreate the wheel. We help create and manage your content through the entire content life cycle by delivering creative content at the right time to the right audience in the right voice.
● We create a content inventory by collecting and recording all of your existing content in a database. We use this data, not only as a point of reference, but as a way to compile your assets and build on them.
● We start chiseling and refining your existing content to make it fresh and reassess the authenticity and truthfulness of it vis-à-vis the current state of your business.
● We ask important questions like is the pitch of your content being expressed in the right tone. We make sure that it is.
● We look at the navigational structure of your content to see if it is correctly organized. We find the missing pieces and bring your fragmented content together and make it whole.
● We cut out the content repetition and redundancies and keep the user engaged by providing new value-added information.
● We make sure that your content is search engine-ready by ensuring that the titling, coding and meta-tagging are optimal.

CONTENT CREATION
When it comes to powerful and purposeful content, there are a lot of different components. Content creation goes beyond just digital publishing in a periodic manner, such as blog postings. Content needs to be purposed around your strategies and objectives. We repurpose your content and distribute your content assets across digital and diverse channels that will unify your branding message. It is better to have your content assets travelling down the same road and in one voice. We take your information flow and ensure that it is synced with customer expectations.
● We combine search engine optimization, inbound marketing and behavioural analysis to deliver high-impact strategies.
● We are passionate about content – we offer and deliver content in an exciting and focused manner that keeps your readers engaged.
● We eliminate unnecessary content – we do not write content to try to meet quotas. We create content marketing to engage the reader and meet them at different points along their buyer’s journey.
● We create remarkable and dedicated copy-writing services that will draw your audience in. We constantly communicate with them and prompt a two-way conversation, while keeping your objectives in mind.
● We create diversified content streams like emails, promotional materials, articles, blogging, press releases, videos, newsletters and white papers.

CONTENT STRATEGY
We make sure that you are meeting your customer at important checkpoints across their journey. If you fail to deliver at important stages of the buyer’s journey, you can miss out on important opportunities to convert them into customers. Most content is just digital noise – we offer different types of content and strategize around them. We inform your audience to specific information about our product, about your competitive advantages and what distinguishes you from the competition. We help give each line of copy a purpose.
● We assess and analyze the current content assets being used. We then reassess the information flow on the publishing channels that you are currently leveraging to tell your brand’s story.
● We create and re-purpose your content assets to serve your audience throughout their journey.
● We transmit your stories across paid and unpaid media channels (i.e. Google Adwords, Social Media). Through an open and transparent dialogue, we build authority by encouraging and promoting engagement and help build an online community.

CONTENT GOVERNANCE
In order to extend your content and make an impact on diverse digital platforms, from social media channels to on-page sources, you need content governance. Content governance is a set of guidelines that determines the when, where, why and how of content publishing and creating. Content governance is a broad strategy that intends for you to share the value of your branding information through content engagement. The Rank Squad helps you allocate your resources to yield the highest value for your prospects and customers. Before a single pixel is shown or a word is published, it must fit within a content governance framework. A content governance program is a precondition for successful content marketing. We will help govern your content in three ways:
● We will help you reach out and get direct access to your audience through social media.
● We will diversify your content portfolio by increasing consumer engagement. We will have an open door policy that will allow different members of your organization to contribute their expertise and add their voice to the content stream – this will diversify your content make-up.
● We will introduce broad, across-the-spectrum questions like “why is this content relevant and important?” Behind every published post, we will make sure that it is purposeful and fits into your content ecosystem.

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The Content Marketing Process and Lifecycle

The content lifecycle consists of:
● Researching and Planning
● Developing and Creating
● Managing and Sustaining
● Preserving and Fine-Tuning
● Evaluating and Rethinking

Businesses often struggle to manage their information and are unable to connect to their prospective clients because they fail to deliver the right information to the intended user. Most businesses are overflowing with content but do not use the content effectively. They forget the golden rule – the business process and content lifecycle converge. These two processes must reinforce and reaffirm one another.

1. Research and Planning
During this initial stage, your business objectives need to align with your content strategy. All aspects of content marketing – from content governance to content auditing – needs to be centered around these objectives. Giving a simplified, understandable message to your audience allows you to connect with them. Your message should express and focus on your raison d’être on both the organizational and marketing levels. Our researching and planning efforts begin from this starting point.
In this researching and planning stage, we will thoroughly analyze your business goals and ensure they are synchronized with your current content inventory. At this point, we will set some quantitative and qualitative benchmarks, so we know where are and where we need to be, We will design your content architecture and use various content platforms to publish different content types: we will setup a blog which will be used to inform your audience; we will focus on creating content-heavy marketing campaigns to persuade; and publish whitepapers that will establish your brand as an authoritative leader in your industry. This is achieved under the umbrella of aligning your business goals with your content management strategy.

2. Developing and Creating
Content needs to be interesting and engaging. Capturing, acquiring and collecting all of your content is tedious work and needs to be automated and systemized in order for it to be meaningful. We will help categorize the vast amounts of content by implementing metadata, which allows you to manage all of the incoming and outgoing content.
We will integrate high-powered metadata that will ensure that you will have access to a full, 360-degree view of your content. This growing repository of content will allow you to organize the content into logical groupings. You will be able to search this content, categorize it and specify the platform where the content will be published.

3. Managing and Sustaining
At this stage, we will house and deposit all of your content into a repository – a centralized, managed system that allows us to collect all of your content assets under one umbrella. We will put them under the microscope, recommend changes and help create a flow-out system where organic content can naturally flow from your content creators. We will be able to review all of the content and ensure that it is clear, accurate and fits in strategically to what needs to be accomplished. Our system will allow for content publishing to be seamless and focused on aligning both business and marketing objectives.
We can deploy and distribute the content to the audience using diverse social and publishing channels. Content will be tailored to the user – on where they are in the buyer’s journey. It will be individualized for the needs of that specific buyer, we can also pinpoint their location and transform the content to reflect the values, expectations (i.e. what specific information they want at any stage of the buyer’s journey) and the language of the user. The management will be seamless, automated and the variables can easily be manipulated to produce desired results. By aligning you content with your business objectives, you can attract leads and super-charge your inbound marketing campaign.

4. Preserving and Finetuning
Through automation and seamless management, our system can help protect you from incremental content asset loss. We can safeguard your content to ensure that you get the full marketing mileage out of each of your content campaigns. We can create backup regiments to ensure that all of your content is archived. This will allow us to rubber-stamp and meta-tag each content with specific information, like creation dates and category. With this advanced system we can also designate archaic content or content that no longer serves your business objectives. We aim to maximize the lifespan of each campaign and ensure that it is optimized to generate leads and serve consumers at different points of the buyer’s journey. Content that is deemed no longer useful, can be modified and changed to make it relevant and important.

5. Evaluating
Once we get to this point, we can evaluate and audit the true value of your content strategy and ensure that everything is up to date. If it is found to be outdated, we can rethink strategy and implement a new inflow of content that better serves your business objectives. When it comes to inbound marketing, especially from a content-oriented perspective, it is important to always modernize your marketing message to reflect the current trends and mood of the consumer without losing the core of what you are trying to accomplish.

At this stage we go back to the planning and researching phase and see if we have met the quantified goals that we had set to see if it was successful and how we can improve. At this stage we can begin to look into newer tools that will help optimize your content campaign. It is important to know that readjusting strategy is a very natural part of your content management strategy. The most important goals should be to serve your marketing and business objectives while providing value to the end user. Strategies can be redefined until there is a clear cut one that can increase leads and qualified traffic.

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Building content around the Buyer’s Journey

At the center of a successful content and inbound marketing campaign, is connecting with customers at the right time and place. Each buyer has a journey and for them to know you are speaking and listening to them, at each point, is critical. The starting point in a buyer’s journey is to recognize that there is a problem or need, which needs to be addressed – this is called the awareness stage. The buyer is becoming interested and is gathering information at this point and is exploring options on how to solve the problem at hand. At this point, you need to make the necessary resources (i.e. educational materials) available to the buyer, in order to provide the necessary solution to their problem. Your content should be geared to and focused on the pain points of the prospect. If you attempt to oversell your product, this may turn them off and they will go elsewhere. The information that you provide should be neutral and unbiased.

The next step is called the consideration stage. The buyer at this point, is better informed about their problems and they are able to pinpoint the issues. The buyer will intensify their search and start comparing options, weighing the pros and cons of each vendor. As the prospect begins to self-identify, you can write more specific and technical content as they are more informed.

The decision stage is the final stage. This is where you convert consumers from prospects to buyers by specifying your solution and highlighting the superiority of your product and services. In this stage the buyers wants to choose the best solutions for their problems. The buyers will shortlist the vendors to 1 or 2 choices – buyers do this by looking at a criteria they have set for themselves, such as the expertise level of the vendor, the price point in which the vendor is selling their service/product, and the “wow factor” of the brand.

The goal for the marketer should be to build trust at each stage of the buyer’s journey with relevant content. As an inbound marketer and content creator, you must create tailor-made content at each stage of the buyer’s persona. Once you build trust and engaging content with prospects, there is a high probability that you have converted them into a paying customer.

In our creative map, The Rank Squad will define and document the details. We map your buyer’s journey across different touch points. The following chart demonstrates the unique content that accommodates the process at each stage:

STAGE KEYWORD SEARCH CONTENT IDEAS CONTENT TYPE
AWARENESS Should I buy a new phone “Best Smartphones of 2016” Blog article
CONSIDERATION What is the best smartphone to buy “The complete guide to buying smartphones in 2016.” Blog article
DECISION Buy Samsung Galaxy s7 online “The Samsung Galaxy s7 Review” Blog article

Stage Keyword Search Content Ideas
AWARENESS Should I buy a new phone “Best Smartphones of 2016”
CONSIDERATION What is the best smartphone to buy “The complete guide to buying smartphones in 2016.”
DECISION Buy Samsung Galaxy s7 online “The Samsung Galaxy s7 Review”

We connect brands to target audiences through cutting-edge insights and authentic content.
Through the entire content marketing lifecycle, The Rank Squad are there to develop, deliver and strategize.
• We deliver relevant, informative and fresh content.
• We track your buyer’s journey and serve them content along the way.
• We see what is trending and what prospects are looking for and deliver accordingly.

• We develop content scheduling and timetables – consistency is key so you can meet and exceed consumer expectations.
• We deliver the right content (i.e. eBook, video, blog post, etc.) at the right time – where they are on their buyer’s journey.
• We use content to boost and showcase your branding culture.

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