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Facts: If you don’t have any content marketing goals, you’re wasting your time cranking out fresh content each week.

What?? 🤯 …It’s true.

It’s even more frustrating if your content is beautifully written. It could be unique, inspiring, and engaging. It’s the kind of creative work you see in award-winning books.

And yet somehow, it’s all falling flat. You ramp up the number of blog posts you produce. You change your style. Nothing happens. Your revenue has hit a glass ceiling or is even decreasing.

Why? What’s going on?

If this sounds like you, what you may be missing is an effective content strategy. What you’re doing is going around in circles without pursuing the content marketing goals you should be after. In today’s blog, I’m breaking down those goals for you. ⬇️

How to Use Content Marketing Goals to Boost Your Success, Direction, and Results – Table of Contents

Seven Content Marketing Goals to Give You Direction in Content Marketing

Goal #1: Building Trust with Prospects

Goal #2: Solving Prospects’ Problems

Goal #3: Higher Website Ranking on Google’s SERPs

Goal #4: Be Sharable on Social Platforms

Goal #5: Educate Your Audience

Goal #6: Earn Quality Links

Goal #7: Create Loyalty with Existing Customers

How to Map Out Your Content Marketing Goals

1. SEO Rankings

2. Sales and Connections

3. Brand Awareness

A Step-by-Step Guide for Creating Content that Fits Your Content Marketing Goals

Step #1: Set Your Content Marketing Strategy Framework

Step #2: Match Your Content Marketing Goals with Your Business Goals

Step #3: Step into Your Audience’s Shoes

Step #4: Create a Content Calendar

Step #5: Write Your Content

Step #6: Attach Metrics to Each of Your Content Types

content marketing goals

Seven Content Marketing Goals to Give You Direction in Content Marketing

According to research by CoSchedule, marketers who set goals succeed more often – by 376%!

marketers who set goals succeed more

Source: CoSchedule

It’s not different with content marketing.

Content marketing objectives give everything you write a measurable purpose. So, without further ado, let’s dive into the top seven content marketing goals you should be pursuing.

Goal #1: Building Trust with Prospects

The beauty of content marketing is it gives you time and space to build solid relationships with prospects. Unlike traditional advertising, it’s not simply about enticing prospects to pull out their wallets on the spot.

Let’s put it this way: It’s not different from a real-life romantic relationship. You don’t ask a girl to promise her whole life to you on day one!

Rather, you take her out to dinner. You talk to her, tell her about your life, and ask her about hers. You lay down your “credentials” by adding value to her life. Each step you take is leading her to imagine how wonderful her life could be with you. Slowly, you build trust until you’re ready to ask the big question.

See where I’m going, here? It’s important to approach your content marketing goals just like this. Start at the beginning. Slowly but surely build trust until prospects are ready to form lifelong relationships with you.

So, how can you build trust with prospects through content marketing?

1. Show Prospects You Know What You’re Talking About

Proving your expertise in your industry is a must if you want people to trust you. Although it may take time to build your “credentials,” it’s easy to start with a few steps.

  • Invite well-known guest bloggers to write some of your content.
  • Go in-depth with your content. Show readers you know your topic inside out.
  • Write a book. Getting published today isn’t the torturous process it was one hundred years ago — or even 10 years ago. Nowadays, you can self-publish on Amazon and receive royalties while strengthening your authority in your industry.

2. Provide Users with Real Value

The best type of content to attach this goal to is blogs. In a long-form blog, you can address prospects’ needs, help them solve problems, and inspire them to reach their goals.

If you consistently deliver quality content that changes readers’ lives, you’re on your way to establishing strong relationships with them.

Goal #2: Solving Prospects’ Problems

Another one of your content marketing goals should be to get new visitors to your site. Your business will never be truly healthy until you have a steady stream of leads and prospects.

Publishing authority blogs can help you achieve this goal. Even better, it’s relatively easy to do.

People go online to solve a problem they’re facing. For instance, a writer wants to know how she can improve her craft. So, she goes on Google and types “How to write better.”

What she finds is this blog by Grammarly.

google result grammarly

She clicks on the link and finds actionable advice to improve her writing, and thus her life. The content is engaging, interesting, and creative.

Grammarly blog

What does she do next? She reads more of Grammarly’s blogs. She begins to trust the brand. Not much later, she creates an account and maybe goes for the premium paid program.

grammarly cta

It all started with a goal-oriented blog that led the prospect to Grammarly’s website.

This is a great example of the basics of content marketing goals. It’s very simple. Prospects find quality content from Google. They start reading and trust the brand. When the brand has products or services hooked up to the blog, the result is sales and increased revenue.

Goal #3: Higher Website Ranking on Google’s SERPs

According to Google, the number one factor it looks for to rank a website well is quality content.

“Our site quality algorithms are aimed at helping people find ‘high-quality’ sites by reducing the rankings of low-quality content.”

Google Webmaster Central Blog

However, writing a beautiful blog post once a month won’t help you rise significantly in Google’s ranking. Nor will writing a blog with zero profitable keywords.

When you choose website ranking as one of the content marketing goals for a piece you’re writing, do the following:

1. Use Keywords As Much As You Can (But Naturally) in Your Content

No, you should never do keyword stuffing. You don’t want your content to look ridiculous like this:

Alexa blog

Source: Alexa Blog

But the right keywords used naturally will tell Google’s web crawlers what your blog is about. If you never optimize for keywords, your blog likely won’t be found because users search using specific keywords.

2. Don’t Blow Hot and Cold with Posting Content

It’s not enough to post a stellar piece of content and hope it’ll get your website to the top. Since Google is always on the lookout for fresh content, what you need to do is post consistently.

So, how often should you post content?

It depends on your company’s needs. However, posting two long form blogs a week works as a general rule of thumb.

3. Please Readers and Google with Digestible Structure

When structuring your blog, don’t pack all your information into one huge paragraph. Rather, divide it up nicely into easily digestible sections.

A great way to do this is to use headings and subheadings throughout your copy. Also, numbered or bulleted lists work well to divide up long text.

The result of structuring your content well is readers will stay longer on your page. Also, Google’s web crawlers will detect and better rank a well-structured blog.

Goal #4: Be Sharable on Social Platforms

According to Statista, there are 2.9 billion people on social media today. And this number will only grow bigger in the future.

2.9 billion people on social media today

This means you should get your brand out there with unique, engaging, sharable content.

But the rules for social content are different than they are for blogs. For instance, while long form is best for blogs, you can’t imagine posting 2,000 words on social media.

What are the goals of social content?

  • It should be sharable.
  • It should be able to compete with content from users’ friends and family.
  • It should be brief but compelling.

When creating content for social platforms, further define your goals. Do you want your post to be shared? Do you want people to click a link that leads to your website?

Knowing your goal will help you create the best content and measure your success after it’s been posted.

Goal #5: Educate Your Audience

Content marketing goals should be taken as a whole. You want your content to entertain, to educate, and to help you gain revenue for your brand.

This is why it’s important to divide the content you’ll be producing into different categories. One of them is content that informs and educates your audience.

For instance, you can provide an ebook for download. This ebook will allow readers to delve deeply into a topic. You’ll offer life hacks, insider secrets, and tips to make their lives better.

At the outset, this goal doesn’t seem to provide you instant ROI. However, it works with the other goals in your general content strategy to build trust by educating your audience.

Goal #6: Earn Quality Links

Never underestimate how getting links helps your site gain traction online. With the right links, Google web crawlers will more easily understand what your site is about. The more quality links pointing to your page, the more trustworthy your site will be online.

So, how do you set about gaining these high-quality links?

One way to gain good links is through guest posting. Guest posting is writing content for other quality sites. In your post, you can include a link to your own site.

Remember, only guest post on sites which are known for their high quality. Google scrutinizes the quality of the links pointing to your site and ranks your site accordingly.

How can you gauge the quality of a site you’re thinking of pitching to for a guest post?

  • A social following of 10,000 or more
  • High domain authority (over 50)
  • Considered a leader in its industry

Goal #7: Create Loyalty with Existing Customers

Making a sale shouldn’t be your end goal with every prospect. Rather, you should seek to build strong and lasting relationships with buyers.

To do this, continue deepening your buyers’ loyalty. You can do this by offering them content geared towards finding out their paint points and solving their problems.

How to Map Out Your Content Marketing Goals

The seven goals mentioned above are essential to your content marketing goals. But how do you map them out and attach a goal to each piece of content you write?

As you will have noticed, some goals overlap others slightly. The key is to divide them into three content buckets. In my book, Practical Content Strategy and Marketing, I discuss the three-bucket strategy.

3 bucket topic strategy
topic ideation with 3-bucket topic strategy

So, what does each bucket in the strategy include?

1. SEO Rankings

This bucket includes blogs and webpages. The main goal of the content written for this category is to gain you better rankings on Google.

2. Sales and Connections

Sales and connections are the next step in your content creation strategy. After you bring people to your website, you want to connect with them and eventually make a sale.

So, what kinds of content fit well into this bucket?

The best types include educational e-books, infographics, white papers, and emails.

3. Brand Awareness

This is where you seek to establish your brand and put it front and center in the minds of your prospects. When creating content for this bucket, don’t be afraid to be fun and creative. You can write poems, seasonal blogs, and pieces meant to entertain and inspire readers.

Remember, each piece of content you create must fit into one of these buckets. When you keep this in mind, you won’t waste time writing content with zero value to your content marketing goals.

A Step-by-Step Guide for Creating Content that Fits Your Content Marketing Goals

You now know the best content marketing goals to reach for with your content. You know how to divide them into buckets using the three-bucket strategy.

Now, let’s go through the steps you’ll take from planning to publishing your content.

Step #1: Set Your Content Marketing Strategy Framework

Without content marketing goals, your business will simply float without direction or measurable growth.

As an example, take my company Express Writers. After two whole years of hard work and 215 blogs published, we were floundering about without real growth. The number of visitors per day was a sluggish 500. We were only earning $29,000 a month.

This shows what happens when you work hard but don’t work smart. We didn’t have clear goals and a clear content marketing strategy to guide us to growth.

But everything changed in 2016, when I implemented my content marketing strategy. In just two months, our revenue more than doubled – we hit our first $72K!

Here’s how we have grown since then.

EW content marketing goals and strategy - growth

When you have the right content strategy framework, you’ll know where you’re going and how to get there.

Step #2: Match Your Content Marketing Goals with Your Business Goals

You’ve already set your business goals. The next step is to integrate content marketing goals with these goals.

For instance, here are some examples of business goals:

  • Increase your revenue
  • Make your brand stand out as an authority
  • Reach out and attract new prospects

What you need to do is see how these business goals translate into content marketing goals. Here are some examples:

  • Gain a greater number of followers on social media
  • Add to your email subscriber list
  • Get a higher number of shares for your content

Remember to be specific with each piece of content you write. For instance, you’re creating an email series to send to your subscribers.

  • Business goal: To increase revenue.
  • Content marketing goal: To bring more prospects to your website’s sales pages.
  • Goal of the specific email you write: To get readers to click your link leading to one of your website’s sales pages.

Tying in business goals with content marketing goals and then narrowing the goal down with each piece of content will drive your content with greater power.

Step #3: Step into Your Audience’s Shoes

No matter what type of content you’re writing, it’s essential to know your audience. Writing generic pieces will never gain engagement, likes, and shares.

So before going ahead and writing, dig deep and find out more about the people who’ll read your content. One great way to write directly to prospects is to create buyer personas. Here’s how.

1. Learn Who Your Readers Are

With modern tools like Google Analytics, you can get information on the people who visit your site. You can find out their age, gender, and location.

But you can dig even deeper and discover more about these people. To do this, you can visit Reddit. Do a search based on a keyword related to your product or service. Then, read the top subreddits to find out what people are talking about on the subject.

From here, you’ll learn your audience’s paint points. You’ll know what keeps them up at night. You’ll understand where they are vs. where they want to be.

2. Based on the Information You Gather, Create Realistic Buyer Personas

A buyer persona is a fictional character who represents a group of buyers. To create one, study the information you gathered for your brand and find common traits to lump together to make one persona.

For instance, you find out that a lot of your buyers are male and middle-aged. Their greatest fear is growing old and losing their attractiveness. Because of this, they spend much of their income on gym memberships, hair loss products, and healthy snacks.

To proceed with your persona, give him a name. You can call him Handsome Herbert. Print out a photograph of him. Write down his deepest fears, needs, and desires.

Each time you write a piece of content, write like you’re speaking to Herbert. This will give your content personality and direction and help you reach your content marketing goals.

Step #4: Create a Content Calendar

When creating content, you want to be prepared. You don’t want to find yourself in a panic not knowing what to write.

A helpful way to do this is to create a content calendar. This calendar will make it easy for you to map out what to write, and when.

First, pick the content types that work with your content marketing goals. Do you need blog posts? Emails? Entertaining content like stories or poems?

Then, map them out in your calendar. It’s a great idea to map out content months before you actually write it! This will help you keep up with seasonal topics and avoid repetition.

Step #5: Write Your Content

This is the part where the actual content creation happens. Which leads to the question, who should write your content?

As a business owner, you’re already extremely busy. You’re running your team, solving problems, and creating future goals. How do you write two 2,000-word blogs a week, different email series, and web pages?

The answer is to switch to managing instead of doing. Instead of forcing yourself to come up with all that content, give the work to people you can trust.

A competent team is made up of writers who are experts in their niche. Remember, it’s not enough to hire a lawyer to write legal copy. You need to hire a lawyer who knows how to write.

Aside from writers, a content strategist and a content manager will help take the workload off your shoulders. What you get is quality content written, without the headache and stress of writing it yourself.

Step #6: Attach Metrics to Each of Your Content Types

Without being able to measure your progress, you’ll find yourself going around in circles not knowing which areas to improve. This is why attaching metrics to your content types is essential.

Here are some ways you can measure the success of your content.

1. Blogs

There are three essential KPIs (key performance indicators) you can use to track the success of each one of your blogs.

  • Scroll depth. This relates to how far readers scroll down on your page before hitting the back button. If you find out that they aren’t even scrolling below the fold, something needs to be fixed in your content.
  • Bounce rate. When visitors land on your site but don’t click on to other pages, they’re referred to as people who “bounce.” When your bounce rate is more than 70%, you might need to tweak your site a bit to make it compel visitors to stay.
  • Time on page. The longer visitors stay on your page, the better. You want to know they’re consuming everything you’ve written, not skipping to the end to see your conclusion.

2. Emails

Each email you send out needs to have a specific goal. This can be for visitors to click a link, download an e-book, or read a blog.

When measuring if your emails are working, take account of their open and click-through rate.

3. Web Pages

There are a ton of great tools geared to help you measure the success of your web pages. Some of them include Google Analytics and BuzzSumo. With these tools, you can measure the traffic coming to your site and the engagements that result from it.

Attaching the right metrics to each content type you produce will help you make changes to the ones that aren’t helping you achieve your content marketing goals.

Content Marketing Goals: What They Boil Down To

Without content marketing goals, you’ll go around in circles. Not knowing your desired destination and making a roadmap to reach it will leave you feeling confused and burnt out.

So, what does creating content marketing goals really boil down to?

To sum it all up, it’s never writing a single sentence of content without knowing its specific goal. When you keep this in mind, you’ll stop wasting time writing content that gets you nowhere near your desired destination.

Are you ready to create your own content marketing goals? Download this cheat sheet to learn the top skills and tools of a competent content strategist.