One of the first and most important aspects of creating a content marketing strategy is getting your messages right. It's not enough to agree on one message. You need several, to meet the varying needs of your different audiences and the different stages of the buying process at which they find themselves.
HubSpot explain the process using the following stages
Once you understand the process, you can start looking at the type of information and the sort of message that your potential customers need at each stage.
To begin with they are just trying to figure out if they have a problem and what it is. Helpful messages explaining what their problem might be are useful here. For example "Does your website generate leads?" would get people thinking... "no, it doesn't - oh, dear, I might have a problem!"
Now you have their attention, give them a little more detail about the problem and some suggestions for how to tackle it. Going back to the previous example you might write a blog post on how websites can capture leads from visitors.
Once they have some ideas for tackling their problem, your potential customers can start evaluating the alternatives. At this stage some facts and figures and case studies providing evidence that your solutions work are what they need.
As they move through the process, the next message should give them an easy way to find out more about your product and servcie, for examaple with a demo, or an introductory meeting.
If you have done everything right, they should be ready to make a decision to buy from you.
Well done! Now you just need to be helpful and friendly to encourage them to stay with you, buy more and tell their friends.
There is more information about which online marketing tools to use at each stage in our free e-book...