- Strategy — Start with the demand gen plan and the customer lifecycle (buying journey) and work backwards to a content plan. Do not start with the product/service and go forward.
- Ideate — Provide a central location to share and house ideas across the firm.
- Produce — Provide one or more centralized functions for planning and production of content, publishing content calendars, streamlining the production process and driving brand alignment.
- Publish — Have a plan for all the channels you want to support and the content formats needed. Coordinate release of content on different channels. i.e. the blog folks should know what the social team and inbound team are doing, as should the email campaign folks and the sales enablement team.
- House — Provide a central location for all content. Make it easy for sales and channel partners, as well as remote marketing folks to browse the library by topic, format, campaign suitability, and success at driving prospect and customer engagement.
- Curate — Don’t just leave content sitting on the digital shelf. Retire old content, splinter new content, figure out all the places it can be used — audience and channel. Someone should own maximizing the use of these assets.
- Measure — Most importantly, don’t forget to measure content effectiveness above and beyond impressions. I.e. measure engagement, and influence on your pipeline.
Content Operations Technology
If your marketing organization is centralized in one location and you are less than 50 people, you may not need any fancy technology to help you execute the seven steps listed above. You can probably get by with Basecamp, JIRA or spreadsheets. But if you are investing hundreds of thousands in developing and promoting content, and have marketing in two or more locations, you will benefit from setting the content factory up right. Look at products like Kapost or Compendium to streamline the content operations process.
Our firm has less than 100 people, so we are limited as to how much content we can create. So, we want to easily leverage relevant, new content/articles we find on the internet to share with our database. We want to enable the sales team to do the same.
Most importantly, we want to measure the engagement with these articles and even adjust prospects’ and customers’ lead score based on engaging with this content.
We don’t want to have to license the content. How is this possible you ask? Well, we use Grapevine6 to find the articles, we promote them through the corporate and employee social channels, and we enable our sales team with Marketo Sales Insight (MSI) to share directly with prospects. And we tag all of the recipients by having the article first link through a redirect page that we control. After the recipient reads the article, if they are already in our database, we bump their score. If they are not yet in our database, we put them in a remarketing campaign on Facebook aligned to the article they read. We just extended our content reach to 100K new articles every week. Another wow.
Next month, we will continue the conversation on content, but focus more on the actual content strategy specifically for campaigns and demand generation.
Please feel free to share your experiences with content operations and other insights on the above topics in the comments section below or email me at email@example.com.