A content strategy regulates the professional and structured handling of digital media content. In principle, this includes any information that is available on the Internet. The focus is primarily on the content of a website – from the navigation name to the web texts to images, podcasts, videos, etc. This content is offered to the relevant target groups of the company or organization as part of content marketing or content management (planning, implementation, evaluation). The responsibility for this often lies in marketing, in larger companies under the direction of a Chief Content Officer.
The term content strategy comes from web development and emerged in the late 1990s in the USA. With Web 2.0 and the development of social media, any user could publish content on the net. As a result, the number of texts, images and videos increased rapidly. Many companies initially relied on mass instead of quality. They found that they could achieve good results in the search engines and generate many page views through texts with high keyword density and purchased backlinks. However, this was at the expense of the readability and comprehensibility of the content.
Only when Google repeatedly changed its algorithm towards the end of the 2000s to deliver more meaningful content to users did a rethinking take place in the industry. To ensure that they do not get lost in the mass of content, companies are increasingly training content strategists. Their main task is to make the digital content user- and search engine-friendly, to compare it with the corporate goals and to use it effectively. In 2009, the term content strategy became established.
Kristina Halvorson, the author of the standard work Content Strategy for the Web, defines content strategy as follows: “Content strategy plans for the creation, delivery and governance of useful, usable content.” A content strategy, therefore, determines how meaningful and useful content for the Internet is created, published and controlled.
The task of the content strategy is to organize all web content, tailor it to the needs of the users and align it with the company’s goals. It clarifies precisely which content belongs on the website and where it should be integrated and published. A content strategy is a methodical approach to continuously identifying and questioning all content requirements. It’s about planning thoughtful and structured content. It, therefore, serves as a framework for all web activities and provides clarity about processes, costs and responsibilities.