In our previous article, we shared the current state of content organization and the various models one can implement to move away from content chaos. The question remains, how does one determine which model is right for their organization?
The best way to get this answer is by taking a dive into your detailed customer journey. This will help you determine what your customers need, and how your content can uniquely fill those needs. Once you know what kind of content excites your target audience, your organizational approach will play the role of ensuring that your content creators are consistently inspired by audience insights.
A Successful Content Enterprise
There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to build a successful content enterprise. However, with a healthy combination of content integration and focus on audience needs, success is sure to follow. Choosing the right structure is key in reaching this goal.
- People: Placing the right people in the right roles with aligned goals and incentives is the foundation for content enterprise organizational success.
- Process: Top business outcomes should be at the core of all development strategies and tasks, with a well-defined measurement framework. This process should constantly be optimized and refined based on changing needs.
- Platforms: There are four main pieces of content: creation, distribution, measurement, and scalability. Under each category, identify activities that can be automated through platform adoption to increase efficiency and save time.
The Culture of Content
Industry Analyst, Rebecca Lieb shares, “When done well, a culture of content will emerge where the importance of content is evangelized enterprise-wide, content is shared and made accessible, creation and creativity are encouraged, and content flows up and downstream, as well as across various divisions. A formalized yet not immutable content strategy is the framework upon which to base culture. Organizations that foster a culture of content can better ideate and create useful, meaningful content at scale that addresses numerous goals and serves a wide variety of internal, and well as external, constituencies.”
Here are the ingredients you’ll need to build your unique organizational formula:
- Audience complexity: The more diverse the audience, the greater the amount and types of content needed to meet the specific needs of each audience in their preferred channels.
- Product breadth and complexity: The relative simplicity of the product offering from a single product start-up to broad and complex portfolios of products from a national retailer will determine the nature and frequency of your content. Also, for more technical products, you may need to lean on subject matter experts both inside and outside the team.
- Length of customer journey: Your product defines this for the most part. The journey for an impulse buy like a snack is starkly different from a more thought-out purchase like that of technical equipment. The more complex your product, the more evolved and nuanced your journey will need to be. It could also demand an increase in customer touch points.
- Channel preference: Building on audience complexity, is the number of channels that your audience uses. Be mindful in choosing the channels, because you’ll need to create channel-specific content for every channel that you choose.
- Quantity of content: Some of your content will be evergreen, and can continually be repurposed and reused. Some will be more specific and will possibly be used once. The generation of new content will be determined by the nascency or maturity of the content team, and the need and consumption of your audience. In addition, the competitive content arena in your industry can also be a deciding factor.
And while you may look to other brands to inform your strategy, be sure to look inward to evaluate your own team structure and resources before you commit to a content cycle. Beth Traglia, Sr. Director, In-House Creative Agency Farmers Insurance, shares, “We take the approach to craft a core investment piece that’s well researched, stands the test of time, and is highly measurable. There’s no need for us to create multiple blog posts a day.”
- Personalization: As your organization moves towards personalization, your content needs are bound to change. Keith Weed, former Chief Marketing and Communications Officer, Unilever shares, “Marketing is magic plus logic, art plus science. Never before have we as marketers had the ability for the logic half of the equation that data affords us today. At the same time—as consumer attention is more selective—never before have we had such a need for the magic. At Unilever we have an ambition to have a billion one-to-one relationships—I don’t believe that a focus on the individual has to mean “niche."
Content Enterprise by Design
Organizing for content is both a strategic and tactical undertaking. Businesses that fail to seriously evaluate how and where content fits strategically and operationally within their organizations will surely suffer in the short term as they strive to create content without cohesion. They will be at an even greater disadvantage in the months and years to come, as content demands accelerate for owned content and converged content hybrids in social media and advertising.
We hope the aforementioned factors can guide you in carving out a unique organizational structure that best suits your content needs. We’re also hosting a hands-on workshop, The Future-Proof Content Enterprise, on May 13, where leaders at BlackRock, Philip Morris, Citizens Bank, and Farmers Insurance will share their insights and learnings. Save your spot by registering here.