It’s no secret that content is having a moment. Over the past few years, marketers across verticals and industries have become hip to the idea that in order to have a successful marketing program, they need a strong content strategy to propel it.
The intent of a content strategy is to generate relevant, unified, engaging and, ultimately, sustainable content that resonates with your target customers. Your strategy should answer why your company is creating content, who you want to reach with it and what differentiates your brand from your competitors.
But having a strategy is only the beginning. More often than not, brands go through the exercise of creating a strategy, but they fail to create an action plan for how to execute it. There’s nothing worse than consistently pumping out content for four months and then going silent for three because you don’t have a sustainable process for continuing to create new content. It happens, but it shouldn’t.
If you find yourself struggling to stay organized and on track, then you need a content workflow. A content workflow establishes team member roles and responsibilities and defines each step in the content creation process. The first part of your workflow should be determining who’s in charge of what.
Defining the tasks that need to be completed and who on the team will own each deliverable is key to keeping your content production rolling and efficient. While each team and process may vary depending on your organization’s unique content needs, at a minimum, most teams will have the following roles:
Once you’ve identified the key players, a documented workflow should be defined for each content format. You may have a slightly different process for creating blog posts, whitepapers and case studies, but the core steps will be the same.
So, now that you have a team assembled and a process defined, there’s still the question of how to pull all these parts together in a way that’s easily managed. Lucky for you, there are plenty of tools out there to help with just that.
Editorial calendars aren’t just for social media. Having one comprehensive calendar that captures your entire content process is a must. A few things to be sure to include on your calendar include:
Editorial calendar tools such as Asana or AirTable offer affordable options for smaller teams just starting out, while more robust tools like CoSchedule and Desk-Net are great options for larger, more sophisticated teams. Not exactly sure what to add to your editorial calendar? Never fear, Convince and Convert has more than 100 ideas you should consider.
Having a plan for creating and distributing content will ensure your content is the best it can possibly be.
Lizzie Thornton is a Content Marketing Specialist at thunder::tech. When she's not writing strategic content she spends her time watching true crime documentaries and saying "hi" to every dog she meets.
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