Content Matrix Framework (CMF)
The Content Matrix Framework (CMF) is a method of organizing your content into consistent buckets that work with your brand. This tool will help you come up with ideas that keep your content fresh, varied, but topic-appropriate.
This is an area I have struggled with since day 1 of my blog. Finding the appropriate niche for your content can be a process. I still don't have it all figured out, but this CMF tool has done a lot to help me envision how my content should be organized.
Attributes of the CMF
The CMF has two major attributes that help to bucket content:
Types of Posts
On the Y axis, list the types of content you want to include on your blog or vlog. I included the following post types:
- Listicles – This post type usually starts with a number. “5 Ways Budgets Can Make You Rich”
- Tutorials – A step-by-step explanation of a process. “How I Build my Budget from Start to Finish”
- Reviews – An opinion piece regarding another person's publication or product. “My Review of You Need a Budget”
- Checklist – A list of steps or items needed for a specific activity or event. “Financial Freedom Begins With This Budget Checklist”
- Interviews – A conversation where the blog writer asks a series of questions to the interviewee. “Beyond Pennies Interviews Dave Ramsey on Total Money Makeover”
- Guest Blogging – Another blogger prepares a post for your site. “Option Trading: How to Buy Calls“ by Gavin McMaster
- Industry News – Posts reporting information from major publications. “Personal Finance Trends in 2020”
- Case Studies – An in-depth investigation of one process vs another: “Ultra Frugality vs a Balanced Strategy“
On the X axis, list the themes or categories of content that you include in your blog. In my first attempt at a CMF, I included the following categories:
- Financial Freedom
- KPI & Analytics
- Personal Finance
- Content Creation
Content Matrix Framework Example
Then I realized I had too many major categories and some of them could be combined. For instance, Budgeting could be included with Personal Finance. So I designed a second version with a new row under the category titles called Sub-Categories.
My second attempt included only three categories:
- Financial Freedom
- KPIs & Analytics
- Income Streams
Under each major category I included sub topics I plan to write about. Below is my second attempt at refining the CMF:
Using the Content Matrix Framework
Use the CMF to track content you've already created on your site. As you fill in the content you've already created, you'll probably discover there are holes.
This matrix gives you a number of different ideas for creating new content, which will keep your blog or vlog interesting with different types of posts. Take some of the content you've already created, and think about how you can re-work the same idea to fit with another post type.
Imagine if you created a post for every sub-category and post type – you would have a large number of posting opportunities.
Furthermore, whenever you have a post idea pop into your head, check your matrix and ask yourself where it fits into your niche. If you can't find a good spot for it, alter your idea, or toss it. You want your site to stay on topic so your readers don't get confused.
Final Version of the CMF
Here's my final (probably not final) version of the Content Matrix Framework (CMF):
In conclusion, use the CMF to generate new post ideas, and use it as a tool to niche down on your site.
The ONE tool that has helped me build my online blog following: ConvertKit – a full-featured email service provider that offers easy custom opt-in forms and landing pages that look fabulous. Automate your following and become a real influencer using ConvertKit.
What tools have helped you refine your niche?