Jennifer Bourn, Creative Director and Digital Strategist for full-service digital agency Bourn Creative, is of the opinion that, “If you’re not using content marketing as a primary strategy to reach your audience, you’re already behind.” These facts should convince you that what Bourn says might just be true:
- Conversion rates are 6 times higher for content marketing adopters than non-adopters
- 86% of B2C marketers use content marketing
- 95% of B2B marketers use content marketing
- 60% of marketers create at least one piece of content per week.
Not leveraging the immense power of content marketing yet? You’ve probably heard the motto that content is king, and you’re likely aware that content generation and promotion are extremely important.
What you might not know is how to go about developing a fool-proof content schedule and managing it without losing your mind. For this reason, we’ve given you a simple-to-follow, effective framework for your own functional content-generation system below:
Step 1: Develop a strategy
An article on content creation systems from winbound.com discusses what digital content generation is, why content systems are important, and provides five points to check off when developing your content marketing strategy:
- Set realistic, clear, achievable goals for your content marketing. Decide if you’re hoping for more website visitors, or phone calls, or feet through the door.
- Build accurate target audience personas so you are able to craft content that speaks to people. This is done by speaking to your existing audience and getting to know them.
- Plot out your customer journey, for example: A potential customer might see a Facebook post, click through to a service page, download a free resource, then enquire through a contact form.
- Set up your channels of promotion, and create (or outsource the creation of) content to be shared across them. Use an online social media management tool to integrate multiple channels.
- Establish a content calendar, and schedule the uploading of content on specific days and at specific times.
Step 2: Implement processes
Once your content has direction with a solid strategy in place, the next step is to establish processes that you and other stakeholders will follow. For example, a marketing manager can conceptualise content topics and send them to the decision makers for approval.
Once approved, the topics can be sent to a freelancer who needs to quote on the work. The freelancer might need to design graphics, which might require uploading to a specific shared folder. With processes, workflow is systematised and minimal input is required from management. This also enforces accountability, but only if all stakeholders are aware of the processes.
Step 3: Find content creators
With the strategy and processes finalised and in place, it comes time to source the individuals who you will task with creating your content. If you’re doing it yourself, consider investing in content creation tools like design software and powerful word processors.
Should you be outsourcing your content creation, browse marketing groups on social media for freelancers, or approach freelance regulatory bodies like the Southern African Freelancers’ Association (SAFREA) should you wish to use the best of the best.
Step 4: Establish timeframes
Step four in building a content-generation system requires careful consideration of the time you’ll have to complete content. Developing the material is only half of the job. Planning, approving, editing, posting, and learning from content marketing all takes time.
Work with calendar and clock in hand to plot timeframes for these activities. Speak to your creators about how long items of content will take them, and remember to plot clear deadlines for every stage of the content generation process.
Step 5: Automate promotion
If you are tasked with both the generation and promotion of the content, there are certain tools that can save you a ton of time and prevent more grey hairs. Content automation tools like Buffer and Hootsuite allow you to integrate, for example, multiple social media accounts on one dashboard.
By scheduling content for the entire month in advance, you can upload all of your material in one sitting. Many management systems of this nature even allow you to invite clients or decision makers to log in and approve or reject content before it is automatically uploaded.
Learn how to establish marketing systems, and effectively manage a marketing department, with the DSM Marketing Management Course. Those keen to find out more about the courses and qualifications we offer, have a look at our digital marketing courses page!
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