Digital transformation

Be the internal champion that drives meaningful change in your organisation

Start here Digital transformation
Explore our Content Marketing Toolkit

The Content Marketing Matrix

A content marketing planning tool to help marketers generate ideas for the most engaging content types for their audiences

We created our Content Marketing Matrix to help our members audit their content marketing assets as part of creating a content marketing strategy. It can also be used to brainstorm future improvements based on your content ideas to engage prospects and encourage sharing. It's a key part of our strategic approach to content marketing detailed in our 7 Steps to developing a content marketing strategy.

The CMM also works as a content mapping tool, structured to help you think through the dimensions of different content formats for assets you could develop in future as part of a creating a content marketing strategy.

Smart-Insights-Content-Marketing-matrix

The two dimensions used in the matrix help you review how content can support the business to achieve its goals against how different formats appeal to different types of people. As you read from left to right the matrix shows how different content assets can develop audience awareness and reach through the purchase process to nurturing and prompting purchase. More visual, interactive content to support emotional buying triggers is shown at the top of the matrix with more static content at the bottom supporting rational decision making.

How to use this Content Marketing Planning Template

The recommended process we use for applying this matrix to companies or brands is:

  • 1. Review how you assess the value of different types of content. Define which content marketing KPIs you use?
  • 2. Review the current use of content within a company through plotting the different content formats you use on the grid.
  • 3. Review competitor use of these content types through plotting on the grid.
  • 4. Brainstorm future content types possible.
  • 5. Use your criteria from Step 1 to select new content types. When reviewing the potential of each content type, you should also think about its potential as evergreen content to attract inbound links and then organic visits to your site to help with SEO.

A more sophisticated content mapping approach will map content for each individual persona as shown in our persona template.

We hope this infographic adds a fresh perspective to your content marketing. As always, we'd love to know what you think. We've also developed a Content Distribution Matrix which enables you to audit your use of digital media.

Credits - how we created our CMM

We originally published this article in March 2012 when I worked with Dan Bosomworth who was our marketing director at the time. Dan, now at agency, First 10  had this graphic on a Post-It note in our office for months and we worked together and eventually published. At the time we were fans of Eloqua's Content Grid, which inspired this, although we thought it was a little too 'B2B' orientated, and their v2 is pretty complicated.

We thought it was a natural follow-on from our RACE inbound marketing funnel infographic. Today, a search for 'content marketing matrix' on Google shows it's been shared many times and prompted quite a few mashups based on the original idea, which is great to see.  If you have found it useful, please spread the word by sharing it!

By Dave Chaffey

Digital strategist Dr Dave Chaffey is co-founder and Content Director of Smart Insights. Dave is editor of the 100+ templates, ebooks and courses in the digital marketing resource library created by our team of 25+ Digital Marketing experts. Our resources are used by our Premium members in more than 100 countries to Plan, Manage and Optimize their digital marketing. Free members can access our sample templates here. Please connect on LinkedIn to receive updates or ask me a question. For my full profile and other social networks, see the Dave Chaffey profile page on Smart Insights. Dave is a keynote speaker, trainer and consultant who is author of 5 bestselling books on digital marketing including Digital Marketing Excellence and Digital Marketing: Strategy, Implementation and Practice. In 2004 he was recognised by the Chartered Institute of Marketing as one of 50 marketing ‘gurus’ worldwide who have helped shape the future of marketing.

This blog post has been tagged with:

Content auditsContent mapping

Start the discussion on our community and social networks

Turbocharge your results with our

Content marketing Toolkit

Get FREE marketing planning templates

Start your Digital Marketing Plan today with our Free membership.

  • FREE fast start guides to review your approach
  • FREE digital marketing plan templates
  • FREE alerts on the latest developments

Need help with your Content marketing management?

Get more from your digital marketing with in-company or remote training and consultancy from Smart Insights

Get FREE marketing planning templates

Start your Digital Marketing Plan today with our Free membership.

  • FREE fast start guides to review your approach
  • FREE digital marketing plan templates
  • FREE alerts on the latest developments

Recommended Blog Posts

Popular Blog Posts