Let’s rewind to January 2020. The year was laid out before us, new strategies were in place, new products were going to be launched and big projects were due to begin.
And then the unexpected happened. Out of nowhere, a global pandemic altered every aspect of our personal and professional lives. Projects were put on hold, jobs lost, and businesses forced to adapt to this ‘new normal’.
It’s been several weeks now - and for most - the initial shock has settled. In some cases, we’re even seeing glimpses of what life used to be like. However, we’re all aware that it’ll take a long time before we get back to the pre-Covid life that we all took for granted.
With that in mind, this blog aims to give some actionable ways for you to pivot your content strategy in order to adapt to these unusual times.
1. Know when to pivot your content strategy
Knowing when to realign your strategy can be a difficult decision to make. We recommend that you assess your current strategy and ask yourself,
“Right now, can we provide value to our audience?”
“Can we provide content that will be helpful?”
And most crucially,
“Will altering my strategy help to deliver more valuable, helpful and timely content to my audience?”
…If you shook your head to the first to questions and nodded for the third, then we would say that it’s a good time to pivot.
Of course, your content should serve your business goals but – at a time like this – it’s important that you deliver worthwhile content to your customer that’s timely.
So, take a look at your content plans. You may have planned to release a new product – which would have involved a new web-page, email campaign, PPC campaign and so on. Whilst this may have worked beautifully in our pre-Covid existence, does it align with the times right now?
It might serve you better to hold off on such a launch – or even soften your launch – and focus on the things that your audience will find useful right now. Examples include educational eBooks, online CPDs and newsworthy content relating to the industry.
Whilst the above strategies may not equal quick wins and guaranteed specification, they will position you as a respected thought-leader in the space – which I would argue – is much more valuable.
2. Putting your audience first – Adapting to Behaviours
Now you’ve decided to pivot your content, you need to take an analytical look at your audience’s web behaviour. Right now, your best tools are Google Analytics and Google Search Console.
You should closely monitor pages that are ranking well in order to form an understanding of what your audience wants to see.
GA is also a great way to analyse traffic acquisition. You may find that a large percentage of your web traffic has come from LinkedIn. In this instance, ask yourself, “What content led to the LinkedIn user to click through to my webpage?”
This will provide you with valuable insight as to what content is working well at what pages are most attractive.
For the more organised construction marketer, you will have your content scheduled across social media platforms. If this is the case, take a look at all your scheduled posts and ensure that they are relevant and useful to your audience. Remember – scheduling posts work most effectively when the message is relevant.
3. Connect with colleagues
The common theme with content is understanding your audience. Without that understanding, you’ll never truly be able to capture them. So far, we have looked at audience behaviour and what we think our audience may find useful.
However, we all have a tool that will allow us to understand our audience’s needs further, and that’s our front-facing teams. If you’re a marketer, it’s not often that you get a chance to actually talk to your audience of architects and specifiers.
However, those in customer service and sales regularly engage in conversations with specifiers.
Now – more than ever – it’s crucial that you connect with your colleagues to help gain a better understanding of your audience’s needs.
So, schedule out a Zoom meeting with one of your reps for an in-depth discussion of their experiences on the ‘front line’. This strategy is easy and free, and will save you heaps of time on research.
4. Don’t overestimate your pivot
Yes things are different and yes you need to adapt. This doesn’t mean, however, that you should launch an entirely new product or completely re-identify your brand. Taking such a radical approach can be detrimental to your goals – especially considering that you’re meeting short-term needs (we hope!).
Take the mantra, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” and remember that small tweaks can have a positive impact to your business.
A content strategy is always a long game. To build up an online presence, it takes months of hard work – so your short-term strategy can’t compromise your ability to solve the long-term needs of your architects, specifiers and decision-makers within our industry.
Find key areas where you can be flexible to meet immediate needs, but know that you shouldn’t be too drastic in your approach. Your pivot should be a balanced addition to the strategy you already have in place.
For some, carving out a content strategy is the first hurdle to overcome. If this is the case for you, our team of content marketing experts are here to help you with a strategy that aligns with your business goals. For more information on how we can help to support your content marketing efforts, get in touch today.
As the only HubSpot certified agency to major on construction marketing, we bring together construction marketing strategy, digital strategy, website design, SEO, content marketing, email marketing, sales automation, marketing automation and HubSpot CRM implementation to produce successful campaigns and great results for our clients.