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Conducting Content: From Dissonance to Harmony
With today’s pressing content demands, every organization with a website, blog and marketing communication documents needs a content marketing strategy. Below are a few questions to consider when developing your own strategy.
- Do you know everyone in your organization who creates and/or publishes content?
- Where are your organization’s creative assets stored and managed? (“My Inbox” and/or “My Desktop” are not correct answers.)
- Do you have an editorial calendar?
- Do you have content specific metrics?
- Do you have a channel strategy?
You’ve heard it a million times by now: every brand is a publisher. But no one said it’s easy to be a publisher. Publishing comes with a real need to “feed the beast.” And, that beast is hungry on pretty much a daily basis. Some brands, such as Red Bull, tweet up to 200 times per day.
Content demands have become near-constant and must increasingly be executed in real-time or near-real-time.
Yet, on the organizational level, content tends to be created and managed in silos. The social team does this, marcomm does that, and PR has its own concerns; meanwhile, community, customer support, creative and advertising teams are each on separate missions. The inevitable result is duplication of efforts, wasted resources, and inconsistent messaging.
At the same time, an ever-increasing number of channels and platforms demand both new skills and increase the need for cross-functional coordination and orchestration.
As an analyst, I’m very close to publishing new research on how brands are organizing internally to meet the demands of content marketing, the result of dozens of interviews with senior marketing and content executives. My report publishes this month. Below is an advance look at the enterprise models we’ve identified for orchestrating content within organizations to ensure that it’s created in harmony with strategic goals, as well as properly resourced across departments and divisions.
Descriptions of the various groups in the model are provided below.
Content Center Of Excellence
A consortium of experts from a variety of organizational divisions, generally spanning marketing, advertising, communications, community, social media, IT, analytics and creative groups. This group provides leadership, evangelization, best practices, research, support, and/or training.
Editorial Board Or Content Council
Content creators and/or marketing, social and communication executives who meet regularly and with relative frequency to align content around an editorial calendar, plan workflow, and make assignments, coordinate initiatives, and share and repurpose assets. Tends to be more tactical than strategic.
An executive within the marketing organization who leads content initiatives editorially and/or strategically. Often, this person is a seasoned journalist, editor or producer. While this person may oversee direct reports, they do not possess cross departmental authority.
Executive Steering Committee
A cross-functional strategic group comprised of senior executives, focused on gut checking and approving content from the perspective of product/subject matter expertise, as well as, marketing/creative. A core function is to ensure content is aligned with high-level strategic goals. This group tends not to focus on tactics or day-to-day management.
Cross-Functional Content Chief
A senior executive with cross-departmental authority, able to set a global content strategy for the organization. Does not necessarily oversee a significant staff, but does possess authority and buy-in from senior management. The title of this role varies. It may be chief content officer, but this is more likely in an agency or editorial setting. Brands are disinclined to create new C-level appointments.
An in-house or agency department that is charged with the ongoing delivery of large scale content creation. Often this is heavily technical, meeting a high demand for mobile, video, and visual content. Frequently, this group is charged with localizing content for regional and global territories.
Demands around content strategy, creation, production, management and measurement of content are increasing at nearly every organization. While it’s not realistic for many to engage dedicated staff and full time resources, it is critical to develop plans and infrastructure to effectively and efficiently address this growing reality.
Some opinions expressed in this article may be those of a guest author and not necessarily Marketing Land. Staff authors are listed here.