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How to Devise a Winning Content Marketing Strategy for Your MSP

How to Devise a Winning Content Marketing Strategy for Your MSP

Any successful marketing effort that a managed service provider—or any business, for that matter—puts out will need to be designed with a few key questions in mind, regarding the content it includes. Who is your content meant to assist? Why is it that this content is important for your intended audience to see? What is it about your content that makes it uniquely helpful?

These questions are a critical element to what is known as a content marketing strategy. Let’s go over what one of these strategies is made up of, and how to use it to its fullest potential.

What’s Involved in a Content Marketing Strategy?

There are many elements that, when combined into a core process, form a business’ content strategy. They are as follows:

Brand Guidelines

This is effectively the bedrock of your content marketing strategy. In order to establish a recognizable voice for your company’s content, you need to first establish guidelines that clarify what tone it takes and what its focus should be. What message is your MSP’s brand built around, what promise do you make to all of your clients? What are your clientele’s priorities? What tone of voice does your brand and business use when speaking to your audience?

The overlap between the answers to these questions is what your content should be built around, given a single voice that will ultimately help you keep your content consistent in message and identity.

SMART Marketing Objectives

We’ve discussed SMART goals at length before, but in a nutshell, you need to shape your marketing goals to be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound… clearly establishing a realistic and trackable benchmark for your marketing to reach in a reasonable timeframe. In terms of your content marketing, you should focus on creating these types of goals so they are designed to help you engage with your audience and help convert them over time.

Customer Personas

It’s also important that you have some level of understanding about who your ideal target audience is so you can most effectively communicate with them through your content. What role do they have in their organization? What challenges do they deal with that you could help resolve? Any insights you can glean from this data can help you shape your content to more successfully touch on their priorities.

Research, Data, and Analytics

Speaking of data, understanding your target audience is just the tip of the metaphorical iceberg. You also need to have the data that helps you gain greater insight into the state of your given market and its current trajectory, as well as data that helps you understand how your competition is reaching out to the same prospects you are. Your own business’ reputation is another important data point to collect, so you can understand the general consensus regarding your business amongst your targets. On top of that, you can use your research to emulate what others have done to find success, allowing you to optimize your content to speak in just the right way to your audience.

As you put your content to use, you can continue refining it and improving upon your strategy by taking advantage of your analytics. Maybe content that touches on certain pain points and topics outperforms content that only outlines the benefits of a given service. This insight allows you to move forward with more data guiding your content strategy, along with all the other metrics that your analytics provide.

Customer Journey

By utilizing your customer personas, you should have an idea of who it is that would be your ideal customer. With this information at the ready, you can then sculpt a customer journey for them to follow with content created with the prospect’s mindset as the foundation. With just about every conceivable twist and turn accounted for, your content can be made to address the emotions and issues that your prospect is dealing with, offering solutions to their problems while guiding them through the buying process.


While it may be tempting to fall into the mindset of “content is content is content,” this very much is not the case. Different forms of content are indeed very different from one another. As such, it is important that your content strategy takes this into account. It helps to develop specific processes for each type of content you use—from blogs to videos to ebooks, and so on—and reinforce them until they develop into thoughtful habits.

Pro tip: Make sure these processes are documented and kept updated as they change over time. This will help to ensure that everyone on the team who needs to follow a process has a reference to guide them through it.

Content Calendar

Hopefully, you’ve realized that consistency is huge in marketing, from the aforementioned voice you give to your brand to the schedule you keep. To the latter point, creating a content calendar is sure to be useful in keeping your efforts and campaigns organized. When a blog will be released as compared to a related video can make all the difference if you’re trying to communicate the connection between them.

In addition to the outbound impacts, keeping a content calendar also helps to keep your internal efforts on track, because you know when certain materials need to be completed before they are shared externally.

Internal Communications

Once again, to continue our previous thought, any successful marketing efforts will also rely on stable and consistent (there’s that word again) communication between the different teams involved in getting your marketing materials and content out in front of your intended audience.

As such, you need to have a standard operating procedure that pertains to communications so that information (and the deadline to use it) isn’t missed.

Ongoing Review and Revision

The real beauty of a content marketing strategy is that it is never perfect, and can always be made more effective. Taking the time to look over what you’ve done in the past and compare it to the results it garnered is a great first step to collecting the insights needed to do better with the next campaign.

With these results to guide you, you are then in a position to adjust your content strategy to be more effective in communicating with your intended audience, whether that’s changing the tone of your messaging, focusing on different benefits, or even something as simple as adjusting when you share your content.

Content-Market Fit

Part of your review should always be an examination of whether or not your current content is communicating the way you intended it to with your targeted audience, simply because it may not currently be relevant to them (implying some miscommunication during your research and conceptualization of the customer journey) or that your prospects just aren’t seeing the content you’re sharing. It is important that you have an accurate impression of both who your audience is and where and when your content is most likely to be seen.

This information will allow you to better utilize the content you create, giving you a greater ROI for your efforts.

How to Make the Most of Your Content Strategy

Now that we’ve discussed the concepts that go into a content strategy, let’s pull out the big takeaways that really make a content strategy effective so that you can make the most of yours going forward.

Follow a Process

We’ve referenced the importance of consistency a few times already, and if you’ve been paying close enough attention, you’ll have noticed that most of the above inclusions play directly into a set process… one of these inclusions literally being a set process, to boot.

When it comes to your content and its overall strategy, sticking to a process helps to maintain that all-important consistency, in everything from getting the content out there to ensuring it is of a high-enough quality to accomplish its goals.

Focus on Value

Which would you prefer—someone jumping at you and insisting you buy something, or having someone available to talk to you about the benefits that something would provide to you and being there to answer any other questions you may have, all the while being ready to help you when you ask?

We’d wager that most people would choose the latter option, and so you should prioritize building a relationship with your targets and prospects until they trust you enough to believe the promotions you do ultimately share with them.

Be Strategic with Your SEO

We’ve also talked quite a bit about getting your content and its message in front of your audience. While having people go directly to your website is a nice thought, it isn’t realistically going to be enough to maintain your business. This is where your search engine optimization, or SEO, really comes into play,

We talk about SEO extensively in this blog, but the quick version is that writing your content in a way that both attracts the search engines to get your website ranked highly in different searches and results in an engaging and educational read for your website visitors is ideal.

Stick to Your Brand

When creating your content, it is important that you keep the brand that you’ve built for your MSP in mind. Let’s say that you wanted your contacts to think of you as your area’s leader in backup and disaster recovery. As such, it would be wise to call back to BDR preparations wherever it would be appropriate in your content, right? This is an admittedly basic example of this, but it is important that you consistently present the brand that you want associated with your business and name.

Lean on Your CTAs

Finally, if you want your prospects and targets to act in a certain way, simply telling them in your content is the easiest way to facilitate that. This is the purpose of the call-to-action… it prompts your visitor to take another step, and is something you always want to include.

For instance: make sure you give us a call at 888-546-4384 for more advice and assistance about marketing your MSP with content, or any other means.

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