Does your content marketing process look like something out of NASA? Is it too complicated? Too time consuming? Relies on too many tools and systems?
It may be time to get back to the basics.
Producing high quality content can be accomplished much more efficiently if you simplify. Actively avoiding complexity and keeping your eye on simplicity will free you and your team to create better content.
Late last year, Entrepreneur Magazine ran a Growth Strategies story written by Philip Davies, President, EMEA at Siegel+Gale. In the article, Davies quotes a line from a book written by his company’s founder, Alan Siegel, on simplicity:
“It’s never been more critical for companies to simplify… But to do so requires a commitment from the top, clarity of purpose, and a ‘culture of simplicity’ that permeates the entire organization.”
– Alan Siegel – Founder of Siegel+Gale
Author of Simple: Conquering the Crisis of Complexity
We’re Drinking That Kool-Aid
At DivvyHQ our motto is “Simplify.” We ingrain this into our product design, we wear it on our shirts, we talk about it in meetings and we preach it to customers. Why? Because it helps you focus on what matters.
Sure, your content marketing strategy may require granular detail and a hyper-defined plan — but let’s not make the plan hard to follow or accomplish by teams. Your process software should help you work faster and smarter by reducing friction and increasing efficiency through easier collaboration.
Where to Begin
Here’s what we recommend to keep your content marketing simplified: (Don’t overthink it!)
- Develop a simple strategy document that includes:
- A list of the target audiences you are trying to reach
- A list of topics/categories/initiatives that are important to those audiences and your organization
- A list of related keywords that you should include in your content
- Create a content calendar that the entire team can view.
- Map out a basic workflow that defines the major steps in your content production and approval process.
Once you have these basics — your team will be more unified by the beauty of simplicity and a structure that make sense. Turn your company mission and major initiatives into a broad roadmap you and your content producers can follow. That will help define your strategy and provide clarity for your content marketing efforts. If ideas presented are outside the scope of your mission or initiatives — consider scrubbing the launch! Consistent, on-point messaging will help give your content the much desired clarity your audience desires.
Choosing the right software to help you plan and produce content is critical. Do you really need all the bells and whistles of the complex content planning tools?
Complexity is Expensive
In a blog post earlier this month, Sifter suggests simplicity to companies considering software purchases.
“The longer your team needs to gain a working knowledge of the software, the more their education costs. The more their education costs, the longer it takes to recoup your investment in the software. Complexity creates mental drag, and mental drag discourages adoption.”
So, choose your content planning software wisely! As you work to “Simplify” your content marketing process… here’s what to do next.
Get your team together to discuss the new things happening in your company (product launches, new initiatives, upcoming events, etc.). Start a list of content ideas for each initiative. For each content idea, identify the following:
- A target audience who will care
- A primary topic/category
- Any relevant keywords
- A target publication deadline
- An owner who is responsible for hitting that deadline
Oh look…You just created an editorial schedule! It’s just that simple.
Great Content is Your Rocket Fuel
But the broader mission will be easier to accomplish — if it’s clearly defined. The key is to lay out the flight plan in simple, easy to understand, bite-sized and actionable pieces.
With this plan to keep your content marketing simplified… you can restart the launch countdown to your revised content marketing plan and see greater success.