This is not a case of tomayto, tomahto.
With all the marketing, branding and advertising jargon out there today, it’s easy to get confused. You’ve probably heard a lot about the importance of a brand strategy as well as the hot topic of content marketing. But what’s the difference? We are here to tell you and help you understand how they work together to strengthen your brand.
The short answer
Your brand strategy is your overarching plan to maintain and strengthen your company’s brand. Your content marketing strategy is the strategic way you will produce content to achieve your brand strategy.
Let’s dive a little deeper to see what each really entails and how they work together.
Your brand strategy is the blueprint for your branding success. It’s a plan that encompasses long-term goals and the strategies you will employ to attain them. Some key things to consider when developing a brand strategy include:
- Your brand’s core identity: Who are you? What do you care about? Who is your audience? How can you engage them? And how do all of these things influence each other?
- Your brand’s key differentiators: What makes you different than your competitors, and how can you leverage that to strengthen your image and therefore boost revenue?
- Your brand’s story: What are the facts and feelings that encompass your company, and how will you use them to tell a cohesive and motivating story?
- Your brand’s look and messaging: How will you visually present your brand to the world, and with what kinds of words and tone?
Content marketing strategy
Your content marketing strategy is how you’re going to use content to achieve your brand strategy’s goals. They say that content is king, and they’re right. Content marketing is all about how you engage with your target audience – distributing valuable, consistent, and relevant content that inspires interaction and motivates people to become loyal customers.
Content marketing is made up of several kinds of communication channels, including social media, blogs, website content, articles, white papers, videos, email newsletters, podcasts, ebooks, webinars, and more. While each of these channels requires a thoughtful and specific strategy, your game plan for all of them should always come back to your brand strategy.
- Editorial calendars
- Marketing personas
- Media planning
- Brand messaging
- Metrics measurement
- Budget allocation
- Keyword strategy
How they work together
Like peanut butter and jelly.
Make sure you have a solid brand strategy in place before tackling your content marketing plans. You want your content marketing strategy to fully articulate your brand to the world. For example, if your clothing company is geared toward millennials, sells extremely unique pieces, and touts an environmentally conscious outlook, you’ll want to tell each part of that story in your content marketing. You could hone in on your environmental stance in a video, and then highlight your one-of-a-kind offerings on social media. And, of course, you’ll want both of those communications to go out on channels that millennials are using frequently.
One key part of achieving harmony between your brand strategy and your content marketing is to not work in silos. When your brand strategy and content marketing are working together, you’ll be well on your way to a strong brand with loyal customers.