Content Operations: Making Content Work For You

Inflation reached a 12-month high of 9.1% in June 2022 before dropping to 6.4% in January 2023. Despite inflation concerns, 53% of marketers anticipated a budget boost in 2023, including half of B2B companies.

Though prices for content marketing increase along with the rest of the economy, the positive return on investment for this type of marketing creates opportunities for teams to do more with less. However, maintaining a flow of high-value content requires a comprehensive approach to content marketing.

Your team must consistently produce, publish, promote, and analyze assets across all channels. It’s a juggling act that involves creative and operational elements, from imagination and ideation to workflows and processes.

Falter at any stage, and you risk dropping the ball, delivering subpar content that doesn’t resonate with your target audience. Content operations gives you a solid foundation that allows you to formalize and streamline project conceptualization, creation, and execution. It’s how today’s top companies publish high-quality content that attracts and converts customers consistently.

Let’s explore content ops, the importance of its many facets, and how to build a successful program.

What Is Content Operations?

Hands hovering over a keyboard with a diagram showing the components of content operations.

Content operations describes the set of processes, people, and technology required to plan, create, manage, and analyze content marketing across all formats and channels. It’s the framework for the entire content creation funnel.

Why Is Content Operations Important?

Implementing a broad-scale, yet well-defined, framework improves your team’s efficiency, instills confidence, and ensures you produce assets that align and resonate with your target audience. Your brand needs an entire library of content resources to meet customers at every step of the buyer’s journey.

Prospects continue to consume more content in various channels before they’re ready to purchase. You need a structure that allows you to quickly create and publish the quality content your audience wants along the way.

The operational side of content marketing is also the backbone of your content strategy. Without content ops, all the goals, objectives, and guardrails for content aren’t achievable.

Furthermore, developing and streamlining processes, people, and technology establishes visibility around every project. Standardizing the tasks and steps needed to get from ideation to publication to promotion will make your team more productive and accountable.

What Are the Steps in Developing Content Operations?

This framework is tactical in nature, consisting of all the actions required to keep a content project moving throughout its lifecycle. It involves your people (i.e., creators, subject matter experts, strategists, reviewers, etc.), processes or workflows, and technology.

To get started or improve what you’re doing, follow these three steps.

1. Implement the Right Technology

Technology forms the basis for efficient operations. You need to provide your content ops team with the tools and technological resources it needs to manage the extensive tasks involved in creating content.

Instead of using all your resources piecemeal, use a platform purpose-built for content marketing, providing everything you need in a single application. It should be able to tackle planning, creating, scheduling, collaborating, and measuring.

When comparing options, look for these must-have features:

  • A dynamic content calendar, which is your content plan blueprint and includes every task for a project
  • Content workflow builders that define the steps for projects, who is responsible for them, and timeframes
  • Content collaboration capabilities that allow for different teams to contribute and fulfill their responsibilities within the project
  • Integrations with other applications to automate things like publishing and promotion
  • Content analytics hub that aggregates data from multiple places into one easy-to-understand dashboard

A platform that combines content and project management in one place increases the efficiency of your content ops.

2. Develop Your Content Workflows

content operations - example workflow

Screenshot: DivvyHQ workflow builder

Once you have a content marketing platform, you’ll want to design your content workflows. To establish your processes, you should look at the content types you create and determine the steps for each. For example, blog post creation would include ideating, researching, writing, editing, reviewing, and publishing. Making an infographic would consist of all of these plus graphic design.

In building these flows, keep these things in mind:

  • Consider all parties needed for each type of task, such as writers, editors, designers, and approvers.
  • Cover everything, even though it may seem too granular; you don’t want to forget important things like creating tagged links.
  • Anticipate bottlenecks in the review process — especially if legal or compliance must approve  — and how to avoid them.
  • Ensure that contributors to a task understand their roles and expectations.

Your content ops processes should also align directly with your content plan and strategy. They are the tactical part of the ecosystem. Misalignment here can impact content operations.

You should provide support systems and tools to ensure your processes and workflows are effective. Training, templates, style guides, accessibility tools, and governance models promote consistency and maintain accountability across the content lifecycle.

3. Assess Your People

The last part of operations is the people. They are, of course, your most valuable assets. Your enterprise content team includes those with niche skills and others who are generalists. Now that your processes are in place, you need to align your people with them.

Four people working together on laptops, demonstrating the collaborative element of content operations.

The most common roles in content ops are:

  • Creators: Writers, designers, developers, and producers
  • Strategists: SEO, competitive insights, PR, social media, and amplification
  • Collaborators: Product marketers, sales, customer service, and SMEs
  • Reviewers: Editors, brand marketers, legal, compliance, or executives
  • Operations specialists: Those who build out channels, set up tracking, define targets, and manage the technology

Content production roles consist of people inside and outside your content team. An essential element of content operations is developing strategies and workflows to encourage collaboration and communication between all those responsible for getting content from planning to performance analysis.

Roles should be clearly defined, with established responsibilities. You’ll want to avoid overlapping roles as much as possible, such as having writers edit their own work.

Can You Get the 3 Parts of Content Ops in One Platform?

Content operations merges technology, processes, and people. When you get it right, your throughput and quality remain steady. When you’re at this level, content marketing contributes to leads, conversions, and revenue.

Developing an efficient and effective content operation gets a lot easier when you can centralize all functions within one powerful platform. DivvyHQ is specifically designed to be that central hub. Request a demo to experience how it works!

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