How to Create A Content Creation Workflow for Your Team.
By Stacy Ketiku
The expansion of digital technologies in the 21st century has placed concepts like content creation and marketing over other forms of traditional advertising. From statistics gathered, 93% of B2B marketers use content marketing and many of them spend about 80% of their time in creating content, while only 20% goes into the distribution or promotion of it. These figures have birthed reasons for brands to work with a content creation workflow to reduce the amount of time spent on content development alone.
Every content developer has their own sets of activities they do before, during, and after creating content for their brand or that of other clients. It is safe to call those set of activities the content creation workflow. In Kristina Halvorson’s book (Content Strategy for The Web), she projects that a content workflow determines how content is requested, sourced, created, reviewed, approved, and delivered. For the purpose of this article, we’ll stick with her projection.
Apart from the evident fact that the implementation of a content creation workflow helps to produce more pieces in content in a shorter time frame, it also does a couple of other things. Having a workflow is particularly useful in large teams where more than one person is in charge of the content creation process, that is, when working with senior and junior writers, graphic designers, SEO experts, project managers, and others. In simpler terms, it helps in indicating who is working on a particular content, what stage such project is at, and ensures you all meet up with a given deadline. From a recent study carried out by Coschedule, they discovered that organised marketers are 397% more likely to report success than others who are not. Furthermore, a workflow helps you establish content expectations which on the long run reduces the likelihood of going back and forth in an attempt to rework a piece.
A good content creation workflow is one that is replicable and easy to implement by all members of your team. Starting from topic allocation or selection as the case may be, teams can make use of 3 labels (In-Progress, Completed, and Published) to know what stage a particular content development project is at.
The Content Creation Workflow
There are six major steps in the workflow when creating content for any type of project.
At this stage, you either have a topic allocated to you or you are searching for a topic or theme to write about. Once you are sure of what topic you are working on, start the proper research process to get information that will be useful for your project. Researching is an important step in the workflow that should never be omitted. While you are researching on your topic, you are trying to find facts, statistics, other people’s opinions, as well as areas of the topic that haven’t been properly explored. Note that the effectiveness of your research rubs off on the quality of your content.
Your draft serves as a roadmap, it should highlight the scope of the content you are creating and points you will love to include in the main write-up as well as references to quoted texts if used.
Once you have come up with a full draft, the writing aspect becomes way easier. Here you are expected to put out your message using writing techniques depending on the purpose and aim of the content; it should also be written in the brand’s voice and void of sensitive or derogatory statements. While writing, pay more attention to the content of your message, rather than the correctness of your grammar, spellings, or punctuation.
Review and Edit
Now is the time to read over your written content, check for grammatical errors, wrong punctuations, inconsistent use of British or American spellings, and other issues that could cause friction when your audience reads your content. This is a very important stage of the workflow, and no matter how well you write, never skip this stage. In fact, review your content not less than two times; you could pass it on to an editor or another writer to also go over it one last time.
Upload to A Content Management System
If the content you prepared is a blog post, web copy, or even case studies for your website, now is the time to upload it to your Content Management System and save it as a draft till whenever you are ready to have it published. With the aid of some SEO plugins, you can check the SEO and readability score to ensure they are good; don’t hesitate to rework the content if you need to.
This is the final stage of the content creation workflow where your content leaves you and get into the hands of those who it is targeted towards. Never publish a content you are not satisfied with, in a bid to meet a deadline; quality should never be compromised.
Now that all members of your content creation team understand the workflow, they can now consistently churn out more content, and create room for better content distribution. In a previous blog post, we discussed extensively on some content distribution channels your brand can leverage, you should check it out.