Content marketing is one of the most important digital marketing strategies a company needs to employ. Publishing high-quality content regularly is a surefire way to establish an online presence and increase your competitiveness. 

For instance, high-quality content helps build your audience's trust, allowing you to cultivate a relationship with them. This is made possible by targeting tools that enable you to distribute content to the most relevant audience who would be interested in what you're selling.

Once you net the audience into your funnel, converting them becomes easier, as they're more likely to buy from you when a need for your product/service arises. It's also probable that they could recommend you to their connections. 

Actually, statistics have shown that content marketing generates over three times more leads compared to outbound marketing. And the explanation is pretty simple. Most online buyers trust information shared on blogs more than paid advertisements. They would rather read blog posts and form their opinion about a product than rely on a punchy three-liner advert.

At the same time, the cost of content marketing is far less compared to outboard marketing. Generally, content marketing is an excellent and beneficial strategy that most marketers (more than 80%) use to build brand authority, nurture trust, generate leads, and increase conversions. 


Content marketing is a type of marketing that involves creating and distributing content (such as blog posts, videos, eBooks, webinars, infographics, podcasts, etc.) to attract and nurture a target audience to drive profitable action.

Successful content marketing requires employing various tools to power the efforts at every stage – from content ideation to distribution and performance analysis. In the same way, you need to create and publish content consistently to see the results of your efforts. But above all, the content must be relevant and valuable for the audience to continue engaging with your brand.

In this guide, we discuss the four crucial steps your marketing team must focus on to employ content marketing successfully. 

  1. Build a content creation framework
  2. Create a long-term content roadmap
  3. Generate ideas and start creating quality content
  4. Share your content with your ideal audience


Content marketing might be an affordable and profitable marketing strategy, but success does not come easy. Content creation is a time-consuming and complex process involving lots of steps and collaboration. 

Before a piece of content becomes ready for publishing, it must pass through several stages – brainstorming a topic, creating content, editing, revision (if necessary), editing again, then authorization and publishing. Without a clear framework to guide the process, consistency may be easily compromised. 

As such, having a well-defined plan standardizes the content creation process and ensures every team member plays their part as and when they're expected to guarantee a smooth process. Ideally, a content framework is a blueprint that helps outline a piece of content, ensuring the creation process follows the set brand guidelines. In other words, it should be repeatable, agile, and organized to guarantee the production of quality content consistently.

At the very basic, you need to have an editorial calendar, breaking down the process and assigning roles with clearly defined timelines. In this case, you should look at creating at least one month's editorial calendar to prepare your teams in advance. However, you could even make a quarterly or even annual editorial calendar. The earlier you get ready, the more time you have to plan your content and publish consistently.  

Fortunately, you need not start from scratch. For instance, you could use HubSpot's free editorial calendar templates (available in Excel, Google Calendar, and Google Sheets) for easier mapping of your content ideas. In addition to creating a calendar for your blogging, you should also take advantage of the social media and email marketing editorial calendars to power your social media and email marketing efforts. 

Here are the steps to follow when creating the content framework.

  1. Plan your content strategy (define your goal, conduct persona research, determine content types, etc.) 
  2. Brainstorm on the topic
  3. Assign responsibilities (to writers, editors, designers, SEO professionals, publishers)
  4. Create content
  5. Edit
  6. Publish
  7. Market content (on social media, email, paid ads)
  8. Optimize the process

For successful implementation of the above framework, you require a defined workflow, which is much easier to achieve with an editorial calendar. Working in reverse from the date you require to publish a piece of content, you can then set the timelines for each part of the process – brainstorming, writing, design, editing, etc. This way, every team member knows when you expect them to deliver, allowing them to prepare in advance for timely delivery.

HubSpot tools to use:

  • Campaign calendar
  • Blog & content creation tools
  • Campaign reporting
  • Marketing tasks


Planning is an excellent way of providing direction. You can never go wrong with a long-term content roadmap. It helps you look ahead and identify or organize initiatives that require content creation. This way, you can have your content creation teams organized and ready to produce content to coincide with those activities.

Besides increasing your content marketing team's effectiveness in line with your overall marketing objectives, taking this proactive approach enhances your chances of achieving higher ROI on your content efforts.

Here are the steps to follow to develop your content roadmap.

  • Map out oncoming initiatives - Designing a content roadmap requires you to look ahead, which calls for close collaboration with other teams to identify oncoming events and processes that may require content marketing. Once you have the information, you can incorporate it into your content strategy for organized planning. Ideally, a content strategy is a plan involving the use of various types of content (text, audio, visual) to achieve business goals.
  • Identify your audience – Once your content needs are established, you need to define your audience. For instance, if you're planning to release a new product during the year. Think about the target customers. What problems could the customers be experiencing, which the product seeks to solve? What are their demographics (age, interests, gender, income, location, etc.)? This way, you can create highly relevant content customized to the specific audience the product targets. The more the audience resonates with the content, the higher they are likely to get interested in the marketed product, increasing the chances of conversion. 
  • Pick your channels – The beauty of creating a content roadmap is that it allows you to prepare well in advance, eliminating the risk of trial and error, which can be wasteful. In addition, every channel (website, email, social media) attracts a unique audience, and knowing which content performs best on which channel allows you to optimize your marketing efforts and minimize wastage. And with a long-term roadmap drafted, you can test with the different channels way in advance so that by the time you are getting to a particular campaign, you know where to concentrate your efforts.
  • Set your goals – As with any marketing drive, you need to set clear goals for your content efforts. What specific objectives should each piece of content achieve? For example, attract more subscribers or followers, close more sales, create awareness, etc. This way, you can easily measure the content's performance and optimize the strategies (where necessary) for better campaigns in the future.

Once you have your content roadmap defined, you need to incorporate the information into your content creation framework and execute as time falls due, following the steps discussed in the earlier section. 

HubSpot tools to use:

  • Campaign calendar
  • Blog & content creation tools
  • SEO & content strategy


With a content creation framework and roadmap mapped out, you have the engine ready to run consistently. However, the engine requires fueling (with content) to start running. 

The truth is, in the beginning, your brain might be overflowing with great content ideas. But soon, the ideas start running out, which can derail the implementation of your strategy. For this reason, it's crucial to develop a process of brainstorming ideas to guarantee consistent publishing of quality content.

Ideally, you should rally a team for this purpose and have the timeframes for content ideation marked on the editorial calendar. Besides, bringing in different people in the brainstorming process allows you to uncover unique ideas you never thought of.

Some of the ways you can gather unique and relevant content ideas include;

  • Asking your audience – For instance, you could create a simple survey, asking your audience whether there are specific topics they would want you to cover. It could be an issue they have, and they would like to get more information on it. You may run the survey on your website or send it via email, depending on your audience's preferred channel. 
  • Social listening – Using social listening tools, you can track brand-related conversations on social media and uncover unique content ideas that your audience may be interested in. For instance, by analyzing their sentiments about your brand, you can identify their pain points and create relevant content to address those issues.  
  • Analyzing your content – By auditing your existing content, you can identify the topics that worked well and track the engagements for more ideas on the specific areas your audience may be seeking more information. At the same time, you could also find content that requires repurposing to serve a different segment of your audience. 
  • Researching relevant industry keywords – Whatever your industry, there are popular keywords that people use most to search for products and services. If you run your main brand keywords in a keyword research tool, you can find groups of related keywords that you can analyze for inspiration on relevant content ideas. Not only does this provide a bunch of content ideas to run with, but weaving content around the popular keywords can boost your discoverability in relevant searches and increase your chances of higher ranking.

Remember, effective content marketing requires using the different content types (audio, visual, text), so you're not restricted to try your ideas across the various content formats. 

HubSpot tools to use:

  • Blog & content creation tools
  • SEO & content strategy
  • Google Search Console integration
  • Video hosting & management


Once you have your content ideas executed, you need to deliver the content to the right audience. This involves publishing, sharing, and promoting, either on your website, email, or social media platforms. 

However, before sharing or promoting the content, you need to understand your audience, especially their channel and media format preference. For instance, some segments of your audience might be more social media-oriented, while others might favor email. 

Both social media and email marketing are highly successful marketing channels, but this depends on the audience using either. Luckily, thanks to audience segmentation and analytics tools, you can analyze your audience and understand their content and channel preference, then share relevant content for better engagement. As a result, you get to optimize your content marketing efforts and eliminate the risk of wasted resources.

Essentially, you need a content distribution strategy to distribute your content effectively. This enables you to optimize the distribution process, ensuring you share the content via the most relevant channels to garner the highest engagement.

According to HubSpot, here are some essential steps in distribution strategy creation.

  • Research your audience – Know your ideal audience demographics
  • Select your distribution channels – Identify the perfect media for your content (e.g, landing page for ebooks, YouTube for videos, website for case studies, blog and email newsletters for blog posts, and so forth)
  • Set your goals – Define your content distribution goals

Once your content distribution strategy is in place, you can distribute, measure, and optimize for best results.

HubSpot tools to use:

  • Email marketing
  • Social media tools
  • Ad management
  • Campaign calendar


Content marketing is a highly effective yet affordable form of marketing, raking in more than three times leads compared to outbound marketing. More than 80% of marketers use content marketing, and for good reasons – it helps build brand authority, nurture trust, generate more leads, and increase conversions. To effectively employ content marketing in your company, you need to develop a content creation framework, create a long-term content roadmap, generate ideas, create quality content, and share it with the right audience. With both free and paid tools to aid your content marketing process, you can leverage content marketing to grow your business no matter your budget.  Contact us for more information.