Key Takeaways: NH Content Strategy Roundtable

June 30, 2017

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Attendees share insights during the topical content strategy activity

Prompted by recent changes to the search landscape, including news of an eventual move to a mobile-first algorithm, and the ever-increasing importance of content strategy, Nina Hale invited top marketers to its Minneapolis office to share their experiences and learn from one another on creating enterprise-level content strategies.

With varying definitions and often nebulous expectations for what is included in a content strategy, the primary goal of the Nina Hale-hosted roundtable sessions was to align strategic thinking around content.

Common Challenges with Content Strategy

Each event kicked off with a group discussion around the definition content strategy for marketers. Attendees were invited to share their goals, challenges, and solutions for managing content within their organization. From both discussions, it was clear that organizations of all sizes face similar challenges when it comes to developing content and measuring the performance of that content against business goals. Additionally, some common issues related to content strategy were revealed from the discussions:

  • Large organizations tend to be extremely siloed when it comes to the creation and management of content. The more complex or specialized the division of a company, the more likely that group’s content lives outside of a centralized marketing team.
  • An immense challenge for many marketers is understanding what content is available. Oftentimes, large organizations have more content than they know what to do with or don’t fully realize just how much content is at their disposal because it is buried in PDFs or lives in underutilized content management systems.
  • Securing resources to create content or develop a content strategy can often be a difficult. Without a clear way to measure the impact of content on business growth, getting buy-off from senior leadership is a challenge for companies of all sizes.

How to define content strategy

Nina Hale’s approach to content strategy is most often through the lens of SEO and audiences, but can extend to larger initiatives, such as defining personas and building consumer segments, or more specific initiatives like video or email marketing. The agency’s clinical definition, as it appears in presentations, is as follows:

Content strategy is a high-level vision, founded in data, research, and consumer insights, aligned to specific business objectives that guides future content development and optimizations across a brand’s ecosystem.

Regardless of whether the roundtable attendees were familiar with the process of developing a content strategy, either from working with Nina Hale or from projects completed within their respective organizations, the presentation and subsequent activity helped to illustrate use cases and indicators for when a content strategy is needed.

Key Takeaways on Content Strategy

Key points that were communicated within the presentation and activity included:

  • Content strategy is not one-size-fits-all. Every organization will have different needs and desired outcomes for creating a content strategy.
  • Content strategy is audience-focused and oriented around business goals. Throughout the content strategy process, key objectives and audiences must be considered to ensure that the strategy developed is solving the relevant problems.
  • Content strategy is not just about web pages; it affects the entire marketing ecosystem. A content strategy should consider channels beyond owned web properties and incorporate recommendations for video, email, paid advertising, static imagery, and more.

Altogether, the roundtable discussion, presentation, and activity enabled attendees to share their unique business challenges and think about content strategy in a different way. By showcasing the diversity of result types and the industry’s shift from keyword-focused content to intent-driven, topical content, Nina Hale helped to illustrate the importance of developing and updating strategies to meet searcher needs.

Want to join our next roundtable? Think your organization could benefit from a content strategy presentation and activity? Contact us at

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