“Why do we need to do content marketing?”

This is a question you’ll likely face during your content marketing strategy session, depending on who’s in the room. You’ve already convinced the CEO that content will work; now you have to convince the people who may help you generate content—like product managers, for example—and they may not understand its purpose.

Your job is to convince them to get on board. Here are a few ways to make that task a little less daunting.

Get Buy-in Early. Take a lesson from change management consulting before your content marketing session: Rather than pushing change or new ideas onto people, pull people in the direction you’re headed. Identify some allies who know something about content marketing, or are usually open to new ideas, to help you increase awareness of content marketing’s importance. Arm them with some power statistics that show how content marketing helps businesses succeed and ask them to continue the conversation with stakeholders whenever they can. This will help you get buy-in and keep content marketing on people’s radar.

Establish Goals. Yes, we know that content marketing is becoming an essential component to marketing. But what’s your specific business goal? Are you building awareness? Driving traffic for lead generation? Nurturing leads? It’s important to figure this out before you get started. The goals you establish can dictate the types of content you want to produce—from blog posts, to whitepapers, to infographics—your distribution channels and your schedule or frequency, as well as how other curated content may play into your strategy.

Of course, you should review these established goals during your strategy session to ensure everyone is on board and you’ve considered other ideas, but it’s most effective to go into the session with goals.

Go in with a Plan. When you’re scheduling the content strategy session, don’t just send people a two-hour meeting notice with no description. It’s your job to, once again, reiterate why content marketing is important to your business, and why the people invited should really attend (for example: they are experts at part of your company, you want them to help you generate ideas, etc.). You should also include your objective for the meeting and your just-developed goals for the content marketing initiative.

During the meeting you should review the purpose of content marketing and get input for the goals you’ve already established. Then, review your target audience and create personas. Leave some time for brainstorming content ideas. If you’ve already gotten buy-in from people and you’ve given them a good idea of what to expect during the meeting, they’ll probably arrive with a few ideas.

Hold People Accountable. You’re the content strategy owner, and you may be the editor, too.  You likely can’t meet all of your content marketing goals without the help of your intelligent colleagues, whether they’re going to contribute content themselves, or you’re going to interview them as subject matter experts. Reiterate why content marketing is important, ask them to help you out, and give them a specific deadline.

A little planning and thought can go a long way in launching your content strategy.