Narrowly focused content is content that serves only a specific audience or role within the broader strategy. Having a narrowly focused content strategy can sometimes be the right choice but in most situations the broader, the better. To better understand the concept I will first introduce the 4 main roles of content marketing.

  1. Directly converts customers
    Hopefully, reach new audiences so that we can capture that new audience or a segment which will turn out to be great customers for us or might be influential to our customers. What we are trying to achieve with this type of message, is that we are the experts.
  2. Earns press, amplification and links
    Make sure more people aware of us, turn that into higher click-through rates because people are familiar with us already. Retargeting and remarketing play a key role, so that we have more brand credibility. The message of these pieces of content is that we are a go-to source for information.
  3. Reaches a broad new audience
    So we can rank higher, so we can reach new audiences, so we get influencers on our side. That makes the promotion of our content much easier.
  4. Grows brand awareness and authority
    Convinces people to buy from us, convinces them that our products or our services or our knowledge is the best in our field. A message of trust and the objective of expanding our horizons.

These 4 roles of content can overlap when content is being written and published, but most of the content you’re going to produce is going to have a hard time doing anything more than maybe one or two of these.

So why is having a broader focus important?

  • If you concentrate solely on directly converting customers you are going to have a very hard time fighting the competition. Content that’s only hyper-specifically targeting directly converting customers means high competitionIt’s often a competitive advantage to actually be a little bit broader. Go out of the comfort zone and try and attract new audiences.
  • You could be ignoring great link opportunities from websites and press/blogs. With a broader focus or just a broader appeal in general, coverage is an opportunity. It could be that you’ve only written about your customers’ problems when if you had written about the problem a little more generally, you might have had the chance to reach bloggers.
  • You could be missing out on potential customers/influencers outside of your ‘comfort zone’. Any narrowly focused piece of content will have a tough time making itself any bigger than it is. Content that’s more broadly-focused, especially if it does well, is going to help expand this sphere so that you reach more people

In terms of creating a content strategy instead of making solely narrowly focused content, think broader. First off…

  • Determine content goals with your team/manager/client
  • Distribute the broad versus narrow versus hyper-specific content efforts, making sure there is a good mixture
  • Establish cadence/channels/promotion efforts that are going to fit the goal and the target audience
  • As always success can be determined only when you use the right metrics to measure your progress against these goals. so it is important to get these right to measure the effectiveness of your content.