Monday, September 29, 2014

5 Money-Saving Tips for Quality Content Creation - Part 2

content creationIf you need help increasing the quality of your web content without dramatically raising your costs, here are five content creation tips that will help you do just that:

1. Run a Brand-Wide Content-Audit: The goal is to analyze what content is working effectively, what is outdated and find any data or links that are missing from existing offers. While you’re going about this, you’ll want to ensure consistency across your entire brand’s content.

  • Make an inventory list in excel all of your content to keep track of what you have: Include posts and content from all platforms including: blog, social networks and special offers/landing pages on your website. If you utilize a social media management tool like Hootsuite or Sprout Social, you can keep all your social activity in one place but sometimes I still find that organizing all your content in one excel sheet on the side, can help you keep everything straight.

  • Do you have useful information waiting to be used inside a company proposal or brochure? You could re-cycle that content and re-use within an article or post.

  • Analyze each content piece to determine what needs to be deleted, what needs revising, and what is currently working well: Study your content with an outsiders perspective. Ask yourself: “What are some affordable ways to enhance what you already have make it a greater impact?”

  • Locate and Fix Any Gaps In Your Content Creation Plan: What topics have you covered thoroughly? What topics haven’t you covered? What new information can you share that will be useful to your readers? Put together a list of content topics, titles and purposes along with where you plan on posting/sharing them.

2. Utilize a Company Content Calendar: Many companies, big and small use an editorial calendars to manage and track their content marketing efforts. To help make your content marketing even more cost-effective, develop a content creation calendar to track your content across your entire company. Having an eagle’s eye view of all your content will help you identify opportunities to utilize the resources of teams, reduce the chance of duplicate tasks, and most importantly, increase the quality and impact of the content your brand creates.

Begin with these three steps to build an editorial content calendar that will function across your entire company:

  • First decide what forms of content will be needed to reach your marketing goals efficiently.

  • Be sure to analyze all the content you currently have available and make appropriate changes as needed.

  • Examine each area of your company where information is shared, such as sales, product development, support, service staff, resources, and career opportunities. The main goal here is to transform all communications into effective content marketing pieces, therefore boosting content creation without adding more costs.

For example, Warby Parker found a excellent way to transform a boring annual report into an engaging and informative piece of web content:

3. Save Time & Resources – Plan Your Content Ahead of Time: The goal we’re looking to achieve is creating several pieces of content on similar topics all at once. Where you can, develop both blog posts and social media posts simultaneously — it helps reduce costs because you are combining your efforts and interlinking between content. It’s also a great idea to break larger pieces of content into various, smaller pieces, helping to extend your marketing budget even further.

A fantastic example is, Kelly Services, they repurposed one of their white papers as three SlideShare presentations, each one focused on a separate part of the presentation. Overall, these three slides brought in 10,000 views, 1,000 brand new people to subscribe and 250 sales leads. Now those kind of results can really take you to the bank!

4. Form A Distribution Plan To Publish Content Simply & Easily: Don’t just post your content willy-nilly! Create a plan to make sure your content reaches your target audiences.

  • Ensure that each piece of content is relevant to the site to which it will be posted:

  • Make sure your content will be able to be seen across all mobile devices

  • Remember a call-to-action: And make sure it’s relevant to your readers and marketing goals.

5. Prepare to track your content marketing efforts. Analyze your content efforts on a regular basis to ensure you are increasing your effectiveness with readers while decreasing your marketing costs in other areas. Be especially mindful to how many leads your content generates, as well as measure how many qualified leads & sales versus your expenses.

Finally, streamline the process. Once you’ve completed your company-wide content audit, created your content calendar, planned out your tasks and formed a publishing plan then you’re ready to streamline the entire content creation process to eliminate wasted time and resources. This step may also include finding social media management tools, hiring writers, finding guest bloggers, graphic designers or freelancers to help you make your content marketing efforts more efficient.

What techniques has helped your company streamline your own content marketing strategy? Has it helped you lower your costs on regular content creation?

5 Money-Saving Tips for Quality Content Creation - Part 2

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