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Introduction to the ContentCal 6C’s

Andy30th November 2020

The ContentCal ‘6C’ framework is our approach to help you create the perfect content plan in the shortest time possible.

This three part series will cover each step of the 6C framework. If you would like to run through anything covered within this series in more detail, you are more than welcome to book in for a free live session with the ContentCal team.

In addition to the 6 key steps of our framework, we will also be recommending 6 handy tools to help you bring your plans to life, some of which we cover in the next two blogs.

By following the steps of the framework, and using these recommended tools, you will be able to create the perfect content marketing plan in order to successfully raise the discoverability of your business online, and grow your social following.

Setting the scene...

To set the scene, it's worthwhile considering where our content marketing plan fits into our broader mix of marketing activity.

An often cited statistic is that 70% of people make a purchasing decision before contacting a supplier. This is backed up by VISA’s recent research revealing that 24% of all online purchases are influenced by social media.

These stats are incredibly important to note as they demonstrate the inherent power of social media. Social media’s power isn’t necessarily in how it drives sales, but is in its ability to broadly reach and influence potential new customers.

One of the biggest misconceptions of social media is that people see it as a conversion-orientated activity, designed to drive sales. You can even see this for yourself when you scroll through many brands’ feeds. Social channels are often used in a similar way to an email list, where we send a message and expect to drive an immediate result.

To think like this is to miss the overall opportunity and potential within social. Social media represents an unparalleled opportunity to drive influence at scale.

How to drive influence at scale

The key emotion that drives this influence is ‘Trust’.

Trust is a fundamental emotion that drives purchasing behaviour and is a critical emotion to elicit when we are planning our marketing content. Trust breeds reputation and reputation leads to word-of-mouth referrals. And we all know that word-of-mouth is the best marketing channel there is.

Our second job with our content plan is to increase the ‘Awareness’ of our brand (see the marketing funnel in the next blog for this). ‘Awareness’ sits at the top of our marketing funnel. As a result of increasing our ‘Awareness’ we simultaneously increase our ‘Reach’.

When more people see our message (Reach) and understand what we do (Awareness), we can then build trust and a reputation at scale.

To visually demonstrate this point, we can use this chart from the B2B institute.

ContentCal 6C's framework b2b institute graph

Short-term results vs long-term gain

Oftentimes in marketing, we only consider short-term tangible results, termed ‘Activation’.

‘Activation’ relates to advertising or conversion-orientated messaging. It works well for short-term spikes in sales growth, but is not sustainable over time.

Brand-orientated messaging (the type of content that speaks to your purpose and the value you bring to others) does not deliver the same short-term spikes, but instead builds over time.

This is fundamental to appreciate when embarking on content marketing. Don’t expect short-term results, but do expect it to transform your business over the long-term.

Back to the 6C’s

Here’s how the 6 steps break down:

ContentCal 6 C's framework graphic

Customer

This is the most important step that helps us understand exactly who we’re trying to talk to.

Context

This step helps us understand the areas of interest for our audience and how to get our content in front of them.

Creativity 

Creativity is all about the process by which we use our understanding of ‘Customer’ and ‘Context’ to get our creative juices flowing. Research breeds ideas and ideas breed creativity.

Collaboration

Collaboration is an often under-used tactic when it comes to content marketing. ‘Collaboration’ refers to getting input and ideas from others. We’re very big on this at ContentCal; check out our blog on Contributions.

Channels 

Channels is all about where you put your message and how you distribute your content.

Calculation 

Calculation is focussed on how we understand the impact of our message and learn precisely what's resonated with our audience. This allows us to learn for future iterations of our content marketing plan.

Now that you’ve got a feel for the 6C’s framework, you’re ready to read the next two blogs in our series. Check out part 2 and part 3.


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