Content, as they say, is king. Bill Gates noted this in his 1996 essay titled “Content is King.”
In a growing society as we have today, a company has to keep up with providing content for their blog, social media channels, internet communications, press releases, among others. It is no longer sufficient to publish a few bi-monthly posts on your blog. On average, blogs with more than 16 posts a month record about 3.5 times more traffic.
According to the Content Marketing Institute, 92% of businesses and content marketers consider content as a critical business asset. However, less than half believe it has an efficient strategy for managing their content as one.
The question now is, how do you efficiently manage your content across multiple channels? The answer to this is Content Operations, or ContentOps. ContentOps is a new field that has emerged to help companies scale their content teams and processes.
This article covers the basics of ContentOps, why you need them, and their benefits.
The Content Lifecycle Explained
Efficiently managing content from strategy to execution must be a priority for all businesses. The content lifecycle is a systematic approach to managing content in an organization.
The content lifecycle includes a set of best practices for planning, design, development, deployment, management, and monitoring that ensure effective delivery of digital information to customers or end-users.
- Strategic planning and organization: This stage involves the strategic organization and planning needed to create your content. It is where you ask the “why” by defining your content vision, setting up your content direction, workflows, technologies, and other necessary services.
- Content creation: After defining your content strategy, the next stage is to create your digital content. It can take the form of a blog, videos, images, newsletters, social media posts, and other assets needed to support and execute the initial content vision. As a part of the creation stage, you will need to brainstorm, implement, collaborate, review, and approve your content for upcoming campaigns and projects.
- Content storage and organization: This is essential to organize and store your digital content to ensure easy access. It can be through categorization or naming conventions across all your digital content.
- Editing and Publishing: Every content must conform to the highest standards and brand vision of your organization. Here, you can use an online collaboration tool or process to manage communication between the content creators and editors. Before publishing, you should ensure the content checks out for all publishing guidelines such as category, feature image, and brand standard.
- Reports and optimization: Reports help you analyze and understand your target audience and the content that resonates with them. With data from your report, you can optimize and improve your content.
What Is Content Operations?
Content Operations or ContentOps is a process of creating, editing, publishing, deleting, or archiving various forms of content. Content operations are a critical part of every marketing strategy and can be in many different ways.
Content operations specialists are experts in managing digital content, and they provide an essential service for large organizations with many siloed departments.
Who Should Be In Charge of the ContentOps Process?
In ContentOps, there are three distinct pillars upon which all digital content rests: people, process, and technology.
There are several people —both technical and non-technical — involved in content operations now. It will be challenging to produce steady content of great quality without having the right people and collaboration tools.
These people participate in the content operations and ensure the smooth and efficient delivery of consistent content quality.
Examples include content operations managers, content writers, editors, subject matter experts, copywriters, stakeholders, legal advisors, and business managers.
Similar to other industry standards, ContentOps calls for proper organization, design, and structure to ensure efficient management of your content.
Some processes to consider for your operations include pitch clearly defined roles, development strategy and workflows, pitch meetings, workshops and training, reviews, governance models, and auditing tools.
There is countless software available on the market to cater to your content operation needs; however, it can be a daunting challenge selecting the ideal tools or software for yours.
The tools employed include CMS, CRM, SEO tools, email providers, collaboration tools, data storage, marketing automation tools, among others.
As with any technology in general, there will always be new content technology or approaches; some will be a success, some won’t. Therefore, keeping up-to-date with this software and choosing the right ones for your operations becomes vital.
Why Do You Need ContentOps?
To provide an adequate answer to this question, we need to consider the current state of content across the web today.
In the past, it was easier for companies to scale and operate their content from a single blog. Several organizations today spread their content across several channels like blogs, newsletters, special media accounts among others. Additionally, some organizations run multiple websites and services that need to reflect a consistent brand vision and strategy.
The demand for content has never been higher. According to the Content Marketing Institute, 61% of online readers made a purchase or subscription after reading a blog recommendation.
The ultimate solution to these is a set of operations that helps to navigate the content life cycle by managing the entire process from ideas to publication and continuous maintenance and improvement.
Clearly Defined Roles
With content operations, you can clearly define the specific duties of the people involved. It will also help ensure your content goes through an organized pipeline from ideas to execution.
People understand their roles and involvement in the content development process. With this, there are no overlaps or gaps in their roles. Each individual participates and contributes towards content creation only at appropriate times.
Better Content Planning and Strategy
The planning and delivery of any strategy becomes easy when you have the appropriate processes, people, and technology. With these three elements in place, you can deliver a content delivery system that conforms to your vision.
You will be able to understand and maximize your available resources in delivering a realistic scope and outline. You can also collaborate better across several different departments.
Even though you will face daunting challenges, most especially with inevitable changes, getting the foundations and basics of your strategy right is a great way to start your ContentOps journey.
Save Time and Money
Content operations help you save money and time that you can funnel into other operations. Having a clear structure helps you create faster high-quality content.
You can save time through a reduction in back and forth editing and review of content. You can save time this way by developing and delivering content on time.
Through scalable and repeatable processes, your team can create better content with fewer resources. It may not be instantly visible that it saves you money; in the long run, you’ll come to value its importance and how much overhead costs reduce.
Improve Content ROI
Who doesn’t want a better ROI? Through better quality content, you’ll get higher organic traffic.
According to Semrush, 76% of businesses consider organic traffic as a major factor in content success. When you get more traffic, you get a higher ROI on your content investment.
Prevent irrelevant content and duplicates
When you have a problem defining the role and strategy of content, a lot of time can be wasted by producing duplicates or irrelevant content.
It is especially prevalent with organizations where the teams work independently without a clear understanding of who is working on what, how, and when the deadline should be.
Get More Traffic With Content Operations
Twenty-five years after Gates' essay, the words “Content is King” still rings true. Nowadays, success requires more than just the traditional approach of putting out individual pieces of content or having a marketing team.
It has become expedient to set up the people, processes, and technology that makeup content operations. Moreover, organizations can use content teams, workflows, structured content, customer personas, style, and brand guidelines to improve content development. Setting up ContentOps will help you handle the entire content lifecycle of your organization.