Consistency is key when it comes to content marketing.
Often brands expect quick results and their campaigns fade away with time. They don’t prepare for the long haul. Coming up with good content regularly gets overwhelming after a period of time.
A well-defined content creation process keeps everything from falling apart.
I often stumble upon abandoned blogs. In a way, ‘abandoned’ is still better than ‘barely updated’. Scarcity of content act as a big constraint for retaining the audience.
The only blogs people return to have a good supply of content.
Consistent customer experience helps build a trusted brand.
We’ve all learned that quality is better than quantity but tough competition asks for both.
Content marketing strategy Vs content creation process
The content creation process can easily be confused with a content marketing strategy. A content marketing strategy rather deals with defining your content marketing goals, developing buyer personas, competition analysis, etc.
Here we are concerned with generating content.
In other words, planning for the upcoming content, creating or outsourcing and repurposing it across multiple platforms.
A quick note
Before we move forward…
- Content marketing takes time. Insane expectations quickly fabricate a false sense of failure, it best to abandon them now instead of your campaign later!
- Secondly, you’ll have to experiment in order to figure out what works best for you. No one gets results by simply using templates.
- Also, don’t skip on developing a well-documented content marketing strategy before actually starting or else things will get tedious quickly.
Alright, now we are good to get started.
Planning an editorial calendar
The content creation process is all about devising relevant topics, creating compelling content and publishing it strategically.
Start by brainstorm topics that might resonate with your audience and research them further on the web. What are their prime concerns and pain points?
Aim for an in-depth post and over-deliver without losing the track. The severe competition calls for hard measures.
Mediocre content doesn’t stand a chance – if you opt for content marketing don’t waste your time by producing average quality posts.
The most organized marketers are 397% more likely to report success and marketers who proactively plan projects are 356% more likely to report success.
This is also a good time to allot content to different stages of the buyer’s journey. In other words, Do you want to focus more on attracting new customers or to keep the existing customers engaged?
The content creation process heavily relies on the buyer’s journey – using it as a reference allows you to bridge potential content gaps.
Lastly, conduct competition research and analyze what’s working for them.
Working with a team of writers can be a hassle, an editorial calendar keeps everyone on the same page.
Well, maintaining a calendar isn’t the most interesting thing in the world. You don’t have to be enthusiastic about it but it’ll keep things in place.
So what do you plan to include in your editorial calendar?
A detailed version may even assign targeted buyer persona and stage of the buyer’s journey to every scheduled post.
Editorial calendars enhance productivity by displaying prominent deadlines. You may have all hard-working people onboard still they will accomplish much more with visible due dates.
All set to get started?
You can simply begin with tools such as MS Word or Excel and later upgrade to online tools such as Coschedule.
I get it that you have a business to run and you can’t spend everything on content marketing. Still, compromising the content will bring down the whole campaign.
Remember we are leveraging valuable information in exchange for attention. What if your information isn’t valuable at all? The deal will go south pretty quick.
Go through your existing content and check does it lend a helping hand?
There are two approaches for content creation, we’ll explore them one at a time.
Do it yourself
Taking things into your own hands?
Don’t miss out on the free resources to supplement your writing skills. Grammarly is a lifesaver for inexperienced writers.
Hemingway Editor is another handy resource enabling you to improve the readability. Although the tools mentioned above are highly useful, it’s best if you don’t rely on them entirely.
You could also opt for Udemy courses, here are some of the best ones to get you started:
- Writing With Flair: How To Become An Exceptional Writer
- Ninja Writing: The Four Levels Of Writing Mastery
- Productivity Hacks for Writers (Writing Mastery)
- 7 Lessons on Writing for Becoming a Standout Writer
Let’s consider the alternative path now – outsourcing.
Probably you don’t have that extra space in your schedule or dealing with words isn’t your thing – well, in either case, you have the option to outsource the work.
86% of companies that are ranked as “highly effective” have used outsourcing.
Apart from being a productivity hack outsourcing has other benefits too. For instance, industry expertise doesn’t always come with writing skills – it can make your content more interesting and readable.
Moreover, you’ll have time for other tasks.
Freelancers or agencies
Since the outburst of content marketing many freelancers and content platforms have rebranded themselves, their service, however, remains the same. Avoid falling for false claims.
You might be wondering – should I go with an agency or an individual? Well, it depends.
Hiring an individual is economical, you can get much more done at the same price. Agencies, on the other hand, are much more dependable as you can reach them more easily.
You’ll have to experiment in the beginning to find what works for you.
Editor and guest posting
That being said, you could also hire an editor. They’ll handle the complete hiring process, produce content themselves and edit the pieces that you might do occasionally. This position calls for a highly responsible person.
Also, consider accepting guest posts – it’s a great option for encouraging multiple perspectives and publishing more content. As your blog grows it’ll attract top influencers of your industry. Although usually, people guest post to create backlinks, it’s in exchange for the piece of advice they offer. It’s a win-win for both the teams.
You may choose to pay or not pay guest bloggers but it’ll definitely affect the quality of the submissions you receive.
Repurposing refers to the recycling of existing content.
People have their own preferences for information consumption. Few may prefer videos while others might stay with the traditional practice of reading. Your content has to come in a variety of formats to attract prospects from every corner of the internet.
Repurposing works in a number of different ways. Podcasts, interviews, research data all can be converted into blog posts, which may further be fragmented into slides, tweets, comments, newsletters, etc.
Alternatively, the process works even the other way – that’s the beauty of repurposing. It all depends on your existing content.
Often businesses neglect the practice of repurposing and fail to maximize ROI. This is a great way to generate more leads with few efforts.
It’s been a long day
Soon you’ll have an accomplished process of content creation. Finding the compatible people and resources takes time for everyone and directions mentioned here will simply speed up the process.
Feel free to remold every tactic of the process to fit in your framework.
Once you have valuable content rolling out frequently it’s just a matter of time.
Few extra guidelines to help you stand out from the crowd.
Do not forget SEO
SEO and content marketing work side by side, if you haven’t integrated it in your content marketing efforts, make it a priority. SEO supplements content marketing with the much-required exposure.
On a bigger picture, they belong to a vast ecosystem made up of various marketing tactics.
Don’t go about trying to build it in a day. You have to start somewhere though – content marketing is a good place to start.
Here’s a fact about spun content – Google and your audience both equally dislike it.
Plagiarism checkers are a good solution to this but they don’t cover the complete ground. They can’t capture rehashed information. How often have you had that vague feeling of two or more articles being somewhat similar while researching online?
Disguised plagiarism is spreading fast. You can avoid it by asking yourself:
- What specific questions does this piece of content answers?
- How is the information unique?
Uniform tone establishes authority and trust among readers – also it makes reading more convenient.
Usually, editors look after the stability. Blogs accepting guest posts have an entire page dedicated to writing style, tone, and other similar directions.
A brand must not have two voices.
Optimizing existing content
You don’t want outdated information on your blog, do you? It’s best to timely update all the post, You may notice a lot of top-ranking blogs update there previously published material timely.
This idea even applies to all the content that has performed average. Update the information, give it a makeover, maybe add some new images and republish them.
Understanding the behavior of your prospects holds great benefits hold and content audit provides valuable insights when executed properly. It simply refers to going back and having a look at all the old content and analyzing their success.
What posts did not attract your audience?
What kind of pieces performed best?
A content audit can easily answer all of it.
Although auditing takes time the outcomes are worth it. Make sure you know what you want of it. Based on the data all the upcoming tactics can be optimized.
It’s time for you to get started… alright, maybe have a coffee first. Then you can go on and develop your content creation process and attract a lot more leads.
Before you leave, what’s your take on the content creation process?
Let me know in the comments.