In marketing your organization online, “content is king” is more truth than cliché. All the advertising in the world cannot compensate for a lack of substance on a website. As Bill Gates observed back in 1996, “Content is where I expect much of the real money will be made on the Internet, just as it was in broadcasting.”
Generating original, relevant content can be a daunting task for many organizations. Transmitting expertise and knowledge, in just the right online doses, can be difficult to start, edit and polish. It can cause procrastination and neglect in building a website beyond something that just looks good. The power to rise above your competitors resides in your own staff. These tips will help shed reluctance and release their inner content marketing superheroes.
Commit to a Content Strategy
At a minimum, everyone should commit to extending your organization’s expertise and value to your online presence. This will help bring the internal perception of your website to something more than just an online brochure and as something that is important to everyone in the organization. This can get staff thinking about what needs to be online to reflect what your organization is really about and how to attract and impress new visitors.
Draw up a Content Calendar
A content calendar is your plan on how your business will deliver its expertise and uniqueness online. It is the details on how to implement your content strategy.
A content calendar describes the topics, details and schedule you will follow to keep an ongoing delivery of your organization’s value online. Content delivery needs to be consistent with no gaps. Visitors need a reason to return to your website. Each time they do is your opportunity to further a relationship. A calendar keeps you focused on your online commitment.
Start With an Outline
Content can be in any form that your target audience finds engaging; blogs, guides, videos, case studies. All of these formats begin with an outline. Begin by answering this question: What is it that you are saying and to whom? Answering this should lead to what would be the most effective format for your message.
After the “what” and “who”, make notes of the major details to deliver your message. Point form is fine. The idea is to capture your ideas without a lot of censoring at this point. Editing and polishing are the last steps.
Get Help if Needed
If your organization has the necessary skills in copywriting/editing, graphic design, video production, website maintenance, and content promotion, you are ready to polish your content and publish it via (or linked to) your website. If not, you’ll need some help.
Many businesses do not have all of these skills. Not having all of these may have held them back from producing original content in the first place. The point is that the guts of original content best comes from your organization, regardless if you have all of the resources to complete the package. Your organization’s expertise and knowledge is the foundation to all original content creation, and original content is the best content.
You may need help with the strategy, or the calendar, or the polish and promotion of the content. Regardless, your own staff can be content marketing superheroes by tapping into the knowledge they have and use everyday. They just need to commit to it and get started. They may be surprised and proud of what it can end up as. Some of the greatest superheroes are those that didn’t know they had it in them.