design and marketing

design thinking for content marketing: a four-phase process

Content marketing has become an essential tool for businesses looking to reach and engage with their target audience. However, creating effective content marketing strategies can be a challenging task, particularly in today’s ever-changing digital landscape. That’s where design thinking comes in – a set of mindsets and design activities that foster collaboration to solve problems in a human-centered way.

The speaker, with over 10 years of experience in designing and developing content marketing strategies, combined with an MBA in marketing and a Master’s in customer experience and innovation, is well-positioned to discuss how design thinking can help validate initiatives and develop minimal viable products that resonate with the audience. The speaker also emphasizes that design thinking is not just useful for product development but can also help validate content marketing strategies.

The speaker suggests using a four-phase process of discovery, define, develop, and deliver to build content marketing funnels. In the discovery phase, the goal is to uncover pain points, gains, and barriers that customers experience. The pain-gain-barrier framework used in a pain point discovery workshop is an effective way to develop powerful content for all phases of the customer journey. The answers obtained are then organized into clusters of ideas and themes that form the foundation for building content.
In the define phase, the speaker recommends creating content that guides prospects through the awareness, consideration, and decision stages of the sales funnel. At the awareness stage, content should focus on building trust with prospects by showing them how to solve their pain points without selling products. For the consideration stage, content should help the reader consider the solution and show them how it can help them reach their goals. At the decision stage, content should overcome internal barriers to adoption and demonstrate social proof.

In the develop phase, the speaker emphasizes the importance of starting with written content, which is relatively cheap to produce, and validating its engagement before investing in other types of content. The author suggests promoting content through search and Google Partners as it targets people who actively search for specific information, rather than social media users who may not be as engaged. They advise keeping messaging consistent throughout the content journey to avoid high bounce rates, and prioritizing traffic sources based on bounce rates and engagement metrics.

Finally, in the deliver phase, the speaker stresses the need to test the content over time to evaluate its effectiveness continually. They suggest creating a ranking system based on ease of production and impact to identify which ideas to prioritize.

In conclusion, design thinking is a powerful approach that can help businesses create effective content marketing strategies. By following a four-phase process of discovery, define, develop, and deliver, businesses can build content marketing funnels that resonate with their audience, deliver value, and drive business objectives. It’s essential to start with written content, validate engagement before investing in other types of content, and continually test content to evaluate its effectiveness. By using design thinking and seeking help when needed, businesses can create effective content marketing strategies that stand the test of time.

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