If you took a journalism class in high school or college, you might remember the basic information gathering questions you needed to ask in order to write an article: The “Five Ws”.

In this post, we’ll explore how you can use those same questions as a starting point for structuring your content marketing program. Read on to find out how!

First, a quick review of the questions:

  • Who?
  • What?
  • When?
  • Where ? 
  • Why?

…and, if it hasn’t already been addressed with the questions above,

  • How?

Let’s now take those questions and use them as a framework for building your content marketing program:

WHO…

  • is your target market?
  • will create the content?
  • will manage feedback/moderate comments?

WHAT…

  • is your overall goal?
  • topics will you discuss?

WHEN…

  • will you publish content?
    • How many days/week will you publish a blog post?
    • How often will you release a newsletter?
    • Will you do anything differently around specific events, seasons, etc.?
  • will you create content?
    • You don’t have to do it all at once, and you definitely don’t have to wait until the day you want to publish to write it

WHERE…

  •  will you publish your content?
    • Blog
    • Social media
    • Email
    • Newsletter
    • White papers and articles
    • etc.

WHY…

  • should your target market read your content?

HOW…

  • will you position yourself in the market?
  • will you measure your results?
    • Which stats matter to you and your business?
  • will you plan for the long term?

As you can see, this basic set of questions can be a great place to start when setting up your content marketing program. In fact, they’re a a great place to start when planning any kind of marketing campaign or initiative. It ensures that you think about the project from all angles, so no stone goes unturned. And, as you go through the process of answering the questions, you gain a thorough understanding of the project and what you want to achieve.

What questions do you ask yourself when starting a new marketing campaign? Share your comments below!