What are your content goals for 2014?

I know we’re at the beginning of February but it’s not too late to still think about your content goals for this year.

I started thinking about my own goals in terms of my writing career. If you asked me what I want to achieve, I’d say I want to keep building on my freelance career.

I want to continue providing advice and help for writers and anyone involved in digital publishing. I also want to build my authority as an expert in these areas.

So how about you. What is it you want to achieve with your content goals this year? If you’re struggling for ideas, I’ve put together a few suggestions for you.

Who is your content for?

Dont forget to keep asking this question. We should always remember who we’re writing for. You can’t produce great content if you don’t know who your audience is.

Ask yourself why people visit your website. What is it about you and your business that attracts them.

Many people visit a website because they’re looking for specific information, they have a problem to solve. They want to be informed, they want to learn and in many cases be entertained. Is your content addressing any of these areas?

Secondly, make sure your content is driving your visitors to take some kind of action. Are you looking for your visitors to buy a product? Subscribe for further info like regular newsletters?

Do you want them to contribute by leaving comments or sharing your content? Your content has to drive behaviour to be effective.

Why are you creating content?

This question leads on from who you’re creating content for.

Going beyond trying to inform, educate and entertain your audience. Think about the topics and trends that are going to be big talking points in your industry/niche this year.

It could for example be new government legislation that’s going to have an impact on your industry. What help, advice and guidance can you provide for people?

Are there any major events such as an industry conference taking place this year that you need to be commenting on. Will you be attending?

It’s probably helpful to put together your own editorial calendar so you can plan when and how you intend to produce content.

How do you know if what you’re doing is working?

In other words what is success. You need to establish what it is you want to achieve. This can include the any of the following:

Your goals for the forthcoming year might include some of the following:

  • Increasing awareness by exposing visitors to your product, service or brand.
  • Building your authority within your industry or niche
  • Achieving higher ranking in search engine results pages (SERPs)
  • Increasing the number of visits/visitors/unique visitors to your sight
  • generate more leads
  • Improve audience engagement
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    Common metrics to use include:

  • time spent on your website
  • the number of leads generated or sales of your product
  • number of subscriptions gained
  • number of new visitors/return visitors to your website
  • Increase in Social media metrics: Facebook likes, Twitter retweets and followers, Google +1s Youtube views etc
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    Are you creating content that’s shareable?

    This is an important question to ask. Shareable content is becoming an important part of an effective SEO strategy. When people ‘like’, retweet, or Google+ your content they’re endorsing it.

    They’re giving it the thumbs up. They’re saying to their friends, colleagues and peers that this is information they value and want to share.

    Before you publish anything ask yourself whether you’re creating something you’d like to share with your social network. Is it something your audience will identify and relate to?

    Have a look at the competition

    This wasn’t something I immediately thought about in terms of content goals. In saying this, I think it’s something to consider.

    You should find those competitors who you admire and look at the things they’re doing that you like and see if it’s something you’d like to emulate.

    Also look at the type of content they’re producing. What type of content is proving successful. What type of content is getting the most comments, likes, shares and generating conversations.

    What stories do you want to tell this year?

    The digital age has given more of us the chance to become publishers and this means we can tell our own stories in our own voices.

    Have you thought about the stories you want to tell this year? If you haven’t then maybe this is a good time to start thinking.

    What important events are happening this year for you? Are you starting your business this year, if so start talking about it and take your audience on that journey.

    Have you faced any obstacles recently which you’ve overcome? Or are you anticipating dealing with any this year?

    Talk about any success you’ve had but don’t show off. If your telling a story about your success, use it as a way to motivate and inspire others.

    Show how your success has benefited your audience or customers. People will engage with this content better.

    Finally, as we’re talking about goals, talk about your goals for the year. Talk about your vision or predictions in the area of expertise that you have. Again your goals and visions should somehow connect with your audiences needs and hopes.

    Hopefully there’s a few thoughts to get your content goals up and running.

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