For small businesses today, this is the classic chicken-and-egg question. Which came first? Your brand and your content strategy can often seem to go together hand-in-hand. And, they should!
Your content strategy is supposed to be an honest reflection of your brand. After all, it’s your primary avenue for communicating with potential customers. When you do your job right, your brand shouldn’t be any different than the way it’s depicted by your content marketing. (That’s why we content marketing writers work so hard to get to know you in the voice document!)
At a Crossroads?
Do you feel like you’re at a crossroads, trying to decide which area to tackle first: brand or content marketing? Relax. You can kill two birds with one stone here. The question isn’t as complicated as I’m making it out to be. Brand and content marketing are actually woven together.
Let’s Look at Brand First
If your company is new to tackling this branding concept, you might want to check out one of my recent posts on developing your brand before you launch. Even if you’ve already launched, there’s always time for tweaking. In fact, tweaking your brand is a huge part of branding… but that’s another post!
The goal is to know what you want your brand to look like before things get rolling. Having a stable, clear vision for this will help guide your content marketing choices later on. However, be open to optimizing your choices later on down the road to better suit your brand.
If you know you’re in need of some revision, read through Chris Garrett’s post at Copyblogger, 3 Ways to Fix Your Broken Marketing. Garrett offers some great advice on how you can reorganize your strategies to better serve your brand.
As you develop your brand, think about the content marketing strategies that will most effectively communicate your message. If you’re in the hospitality industry, Pinterest and other visually-based approaches will likely be your go-tos. You might also find platforms like Vimeo and YouTube to be valuable assets.
But, if you provide IT solutions, you’re probably going to focus your content strategy efforts elsewhere: blogging, Twitter, free apps, etc. If you have no idea where to start, this Infographic from Mashable can help you figure out what social media platforms are most effective for your business.
However, knowing what your brand stands for and what your goals are make your content marketing choices a lot easier!
In a Nutshell…
Here’s what it comes down to: your content marketing choices have to make sense for your brand. When they make sense, they develop together, exist together, and neither precedes the other. To use one of my favorite words, if I may, they are equiprimordial.
Done properly, content marketing and your brand feed off each other, and give life to one another. Remember: your brand is largely defined by your customers. And, content marketing is all about listening to your customers. When you do these things well, they become so intertwined that neither should predate the other!
What’s your opinion? Do you think one precedes the other?