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Many marketers have chosen to make content the centerpiece of their strategy. Yet, when it comes to results, not everyone is able to claim the same success. Content marketing can look deceptively simple. After all, you just need to create something and put it out there, right?

In fact, this couldn’t be further from the truth.

In content marketing, the most effective approach is called the “Strategy – Execution – Analysis” Framework. It allows you to keep an eye on the big picture while keeping all aspects of your content marketing effort under control.

In the Strategy phase, you are setting your goals for content marketing and making choices about the best means to pursue them.

Execution is when you’ll implement the plan you created in the strategy phase. In this stage, it is important to keep an eye on the quality of the content you’re producing and on implementing the specific tactics you chose in the strategy stage to the greatest benefit.

In the Analysis stage of the cycle, you need to spend time analyzing the performance of the content you created. Find out what works well, identify what makes sense but needs to be improved, and determine what should be slashed altogether. The analysis stage allows you to go back to step 1 of the framework and begin strategizing again, armed with more reliable (i.e., data-backed) information.

The most important issue when it comes to planning your strategy is actually creating one, and that step should include writing it down. Think through the most important aspects of your strategy, and then sit down to document your master plan. Whether you’re working alone or as part of a team, a written strategy will help you keep yourself and your team accountable.

Here are some of the most common aspects marketers tend to get wrong:

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