What Does a Content Operations Manager Do, Exactly?

An enterprise content team includes many different roles, all working together to get relevant content in front of your target audiences consistently. One role that is instrumental in keeping your content pipeline moving is a content operations manager. So, what exactly does a content operations manager do? Let’s find out.

What Is Content Operations?

First, it’s critical to define content operations. Content operations describes the people, processes, and technology an organization uses to maintain the content lifecycle from start to finish. It includes every stage:

  • Strategy and ideation
  • Creation
  • Publishing
  • Distribution and promotion
  • Management of content (e.g., updating it as needed)

In the three facets of content operations, you have:

  • People: All contributors to content who have defined responsibilities.
  • Processes: The workflows and tasks needed for every content project, which will vary depending on the format.
  • Technology: The platforms you use to manage the content lifecycle, with the most important being content marketing software.

Content, just like any other area of marketing or your business, has an operational side. Creativity is a strong component of content, but the functional aspects are just as important. Here’s why.

Why Do Content Operations Matter?

The short answer is that without the operational elements, you may never bring a project to fruition. Even if you do, it likely takes longer, has no guardrails, and frustrates all involved. Remember that meeting throughput defined in your content strategy is how you feed the engine of attracting and converting.

Everyone on your enterprise content team and the entire organization can benefit from content operations. Even your audience will because they’ll have more information to review as they move through the buyer’s funnel. They are eager for this, as 71 percent of B2B buyers consume blog content as part of their research.

The key advantages of content operations include:

  • Saving time: You can measure how much time you’re saving in your content marketing platform.
  • Improving productivity and efficiency: With content workflows, there’s no ambiguity about what needs to be completed and by whom.
  • Improving the quality of content: With standards to uphold, your content will have consistent messaging and follow best practices.
  • Producing content faster: When deadlines and timelines are fast because content has an expiration, content operations moves it through the process quickly.
  • Better aligned and happier teams with a process to guide them: If your team is on the same page and there’s consistency in operations, everyone will feel lots of relief.
  • Easier onboarding of new content team members: Documented processes get people up to speed faster.
  • Production of a diverse type of content is easier: The top four formats that companies use in content marketing are videos, blog posts, images, and infographics. Each has a different workflow; when you have these workflows defined, you can manage output more effectively.

To realize these advantages, you’ll need a content operations manager. Next, we’ll explore what the role does and how they support your marketing and communications organizations.

A Content Operations Manager: What Do They Do?

content operations manager

The main objective of this role is to oversee the daily operations of a content team. Their focus is to ensure that the group has the right people, processes, and technology in place to execute the content strategy and plan successfully.

The primary responsibilities of these objectives include:

  • Choosing the technology that content teams use to manage content production.
  • Creating and updating policies and procedures for content operations.
  • Streamlining or defining content workflows to ensure maximum efficiency, appropriate timelines, and inclusion of all necessary tasks.
  • Training new hires on processes and technology tools.
  • Measuring the performance of the content team against throughput goals and finding insights in the analysis about roadblocks.
  • Collaborating with other team members to identify processes that are out of sync and need a revamp.

This isn’t an exhaustive list of what a content operations manager has purview over. To dig in a little deeper, here are some areas they may lead, participate in, or manage.

Content Planning

Content planning involves building out the schedule of all content deliverables. These will be part of your content calendar. Planning is a proactive, ongoing effort, and most companies should have their plans scheduled six to eight weeks out. Of course, real-time events occur that can move priorities.

The purpose of a content operations manager in these activities is to standardize the processes for content development. The person may also provide opinions on timelines and anything that could prevent the project from on-time completion (e.g., multiple approvals from different parties).

Content Workflows

The content operations manager is the content workflows guru. They define workflows to include every step. They may do this by interviewing creators and other stakeholders. They can also audit existing workflows to determine anomalies. If content workflows need changes, the content operations manager should make these adjustments.

Content Quality Consistency

Content operations’ goal is to produce and deliver engaging content. An ops manager sets the standard of quality, typically related to style and formatting parameters. Those can include things like:

  • Minimum length
  • Keyword usage
  • Syntax rules (e.g., Use active voice, not passive voice)
  • Citations
  • Formatting requirements (e.g., use of headers, bullets, imagery)

A content operations manager can review content based on these guidelines and kick back versions that need improvement.

Content Collaboration

A content operations manager can be a liaison between your content creators and other parties, such as SMEs (subject matter experts), legal, HR, sales, or compliance. Content collaboration is necessary for many projects, and this role can take the lead in facilitating meetings, creating documentation, and ensuring that all involved can work together without roadblocks or bottlenecks.

Content Production & Performance Insights

A content operations manager is also the data-driven leader, reviewing content analytics and reporting key findings. Does your upcoming content schedule align with your content strategy? Is your recent published content performing as expected? Those insights can help future content be more engaging and reveal what your audience most wants to consume (formats and topics).

A content operations manager has a full plate, but yours can get more done with the right technology. The award-winning DivvyHQ platform has all the tools necessary. See how it works by starting your free trial.