Research from the Content Marketing Institute indicates that content creation is the key area in which the majority of B2B marketers increased their spending over the past year.
But more content produced means more content to be managed and without a well-oiled content marketing workflow, seeing a meaningful ROI on this content becomes almost impossible.
If you’re investing in content production as a way to build your brand’s profile and better connect with customers, you need to have a plan for developing, distributing and evaluating your efforts. Here’s our advice on building a content marketing workflow that works for your team.
Understand and identify your audience
Obviously, creating content for Baby Boomers is different than creating content aimed at Gen Z in terms of messaging, voice and tone, channel, etc. Make sure step one in any new content initiative involves clearly outlining your intended audience and indicating how the content aligns with the needs of your key customer personas.
Develop once, distribute widely
If you’re part of a marketing team that has unlimited resources at its disposal, congratulations! For most marketers, however, bandwidth is limited and any content developed should be multi-purpose. Your workflow should detail out how a particular content piece (an ebook, for example) will be broken down and repurposed (as a series of blog posts, a Slideshare, etc.) and used across multiple channels.
Keep things moving
Write clear documentation about the boundaries of responsibility for your team. Use automation to move content from one stage (say, from copywriting to design) to the next and to make the revision and approval process run smoothly. This will minimize delays and bottlenecks, making sure that you’re meeting content deadlines and your production schedule is consistent.
Create the editorial calendar as a team and stick to it
There’s nothing worse than operating under chaos, so make maintaining and following a robust editorial calendar a top priority. This will help your team head off ad hoc requests for content that you haven’t planned for. If it isn’t in the calendar, it isn’t scheduled for production!
Archive and document as you go
Your team should have no question about who has to save what where, and how it will be named. Your assets should be organized and easy to find, and everyone should be in charge of keeping it that way, so that when you need to reference or refresh older content, you aren’t setting off on a wild goose chase.
Regularly audit performance and make tweaks as needed
Content should not be created in a vacuum. By tracking the performance of your content (by medium, channel, topic, etc.), you can find out what’s resonating most with your intended audience. Accurate data will allow you to stop operating by gut instinct alone (no one’s gut is that good!) and allocate your limited talent and budget resources to developing the type of content that provides the most bang for your buck. Look at results on a monthly basis and devote some attention to quarter-over-quarter changes. Don’t be afraid to pivot away from channels that just aren’t driving the results you’re looking for.
Great content can help your brand stand out from the pack, but great content doesn’t happen by accident. Developing a strong content marketing workflow makes it easier to develop, distribute and evaluate high-quality content that truly speaks to your customers and to do it at scale.