If you want to step up your content marketing in 2021, you’re in the right place!

For our very first #ContentWritingChat of the year, we felt it was only fitting to share some tips to help you boost your content marketing efforts.

After all, we’re pretty passionate about creating amazing content around here!

This topic was actually inspired by a talk our CEO, Julia McCoy, did during a virtual summit back in December. Now, we’re building off of Julia’s advice by learning even more great tips from our community.

#ContentWritingChat Recap: How to Fuel Your Content Marketing in 2021

This month, we opted to do a community chat, opening the floor up to everyone as they shared their thoughts and opinions. So many great tips were shared during this chat, so let’s dive into the recap!

Q1:2021 is upon us! Have you developed your content marketing plan for the year ahead yet?

Some people are eager to get started with their planning, while others take their time and plan quarterly or even monthly. Here’s what some of our chat participants had to say:

Lexie is prepared with a content marketing plan ready to go! However, she also realizes the importance of being flexible. Things can change and you have to be willing to adapt as needed.

Kushlani tackles her planning on a quarterly basis, which is a smart way to go about it.

Chris is in the same boat and focuses on planning three months at a time.

Carla prefers to plan month-to-month, allowing her to revise as needed based on her weekly findings within her analytics.

Q2: To cultivate success in your business, you need to invest in your personal growth first. How are you planning to prioritize and invest in your content marketing growth this year?

If you aren’t sure how to invest in your growth and knowledge, these are some great suggestions:

Connecting with others can be an amazing way to experience growth since you can learn so much from other experts. Reading blogs, listening to podcasts, and participating in chats are great options as well.

Danielle is a fan of participating in Twitter chats. She knows there’s so much to be learned, as you’re exposed to so many new perspectives.

Vivek is committing to personal growth by reading books that are about marketing, business, and copywriting.

For Rachel, she’s going to be attending a lot of virtual events. They can be an amazing way to learn from other experts without having to leave the comfort of your own home.

Dana loves to read, watch films, take classes, volunteer, and talk to people. All are great ways to expand your knowledge and strengthen your skills.

It may help you to choose a few key areas that you’d like to learn about and find dedicated resources on them, such as any interesting books.

Carla’s advice about having a budget is great. You want to be smart about where you’re investing your money so you don’t spend beyond your means. Set a budget and determine which areas you’d like to give your attention to.

And once you’ve found some great resources, schedule time into your calendar just for you. This way, you’ll be able to prioritize your education this year.

Q3: Ranking in Google search results is a win for any content creator. Our CEO, Julia McCoy, suggests studying the top results for your target keywords. What can you learn from doing this?

It turns out there’s a lot you can learn! And it can be pretty beneficial for you, so you might want to get started on that ASAP.

From Julia herself, she said doing this research will help you see what content gets ranked for your keyword, who’s doing it well, and who’s not doing it well. It just might spark some new ideas for you too!

You can also notice things about the writing style and the length of the content that’s being ranked.

Masooma suggests looking at how they’re using keywords, as well as paying attention to formatting. Also, do you notice anything special about the intros of the posts that are ranking?

You can even learn how the post is structured and how detailed they are, as well as a number of other things that can help shape your own content.

Q4: When it comes to content creation, practice makes perfect. What can you do to become a better creator this year and produce content that generates conversions?

The secrets to becoming a better content creator are as follows:

Jessica is challenging herself to write every single day. She’s experimenting with different types of content as well. After all, the more you write, the better you’ll become at it!

Rachel suggests setting a content creation goal to inspire you to keep writing.

To create better content, it also helps to learn more about your audience and what they need so you can better serve them.

Masooma is also planning to do more research on her target audience this year so she can gain a better understanding of their pain points.

Lexie’s advice is to be open to feedback. If you want to get better, you need to be able to accept constructive criticism so you can learn where you need to improve.

Q5: Storytelling is important to content marketing success. What are the characteristics of a good brand story and how can you tell it effectively?

This advice from our chat will help you up your storytelling game:

Rachel feels a great brand story should communicate a problem, how that problem impacts others, and how the brand can solve the issue.

Maria knows great stories have authenticity and passion.

A relatable story is also a great way to draw your audience in.

And of course, you want to inspire people to take action after hearing your story.

Authenticity, consistency, and staying power are definitely key.

These questions Danielle asked will help you determine if your storytelling is moving in the right direction.

Q6: Google searches went from 3.5 billion per day to 6 billion per day and it’s still climbing! How can brands take full advantage of this in 2021?

These are the tips you’ll want to know if you’d like to climb to the top of the search results this year:

Always write with your audience in mind and create the quality content they’re looking for.

When you know what people are searching for, you can create the content that answers all their questions.

Social listening is so important to gain a better understanding of your audience and their needs. This will tell you exactly what kind of content you should be creating.

At the end of the day, it’s all about serving your audience.

And make sure your content is always valuable and trustworthy.

Whatever you do, see this as an opportunity as we head into 2021 and use it to your advantage.

Q7: Do you have any favorite tools or resources that have shaped your content marketing over the years?

Check out these tools and give them a go! You might find some great ones to add to your content marketing efforts:

Some of Masooma’s go-to resources include Content Marketing Institute and Answer the Public.

Michelle loves CoSchedule’s headline analyzer, Grammarly, and Buffer.

KWFinder is an essential for Chris.

And Lexie’s favorites include SEMrush, Ahrefs, and Answer the Public.

Q8: What are some of the biggest lessons you learned in 2020 that you will carry into your content marketing for this year?

These are lessons that we can all take to heart:

Be flexible! This is so important to remember.

Spend time talking to people and learning from others.

Make sure your messaging is clear.

Adapt to what’s going on in the world and deliver relevant, timely content.

Want to join us next time? We chat on the first Tuesday of every month at 10 AM Central. Follow @ExpWriters and @writingchat for updates.

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