What does your content strategy look like? If you’re like most businesses, entrepreneurs, startups and the like, there’s not much strategy to it. Many businesses begin writing or curating content on an as-needed basis. For example, you need content for your website or you need to write up a product description. Oftentimes, these needs are seemingly spur of the moment, which means that little time is left for planning.
When so-called strategies are formed on a whim, it wreaks havoc and results in poor quality. Even content that seemingly should be well planned, such as press releases, blogs, white papers or articles, ends up being rushed.
Maybe nobody realized until the last minute that a press release is a good idea for that charity walk. Maybe the executive director is being pushed by his or her own mentor to create a business blog, and now the best writer on the team is in charge of it — even though that person is actually an admin staffer with no professional writing experience and an already-full schedule.
No matter how early or overdue you are in the content strategy scheme, it’s time to prioritize it. Here’s how:
1. Stop writing and start planning (for now)
Remember this mantra: No writing at all is better than poor writing. If you don’t have a professional writer or writing company taking care of all your content, hold the presses. You need to create a plan and calendar for all your writing needs, ideally with the help of writing professionals. This includes everything from routine website updates to social media posts.
Will urgent requests still pop up? Of course, but they’ll be much more manageable when you can place them in a calendar rather than toss them on top of the pile of quickly growing tasks.
2. Hire well
Would you hire just anyone to take care of your accounting? No, and the same care should be taken with your writing crew. If you want SEO writing for your website (and you should), seek out a reputable SEO writing firm. If you want a daily blogger, hire someone with that experience. If you can’t afford to hire a writer, don’t expect anywhere near the same professional quality when you ask a non-writer to take on the project. (Ideally, hold off writing at all until you can hire a pro!)
3. Set realistic standards
Developing content strategy is like developing a business plan. This is how and where you identify your strengths, weaknesses and opportunities. It might sound fantastic to post on four social media platforms daily, but is it realistic? Is that going to give you the best results? Do you have the manpower to make that happen?
4. Declare challenging, yet reasonable, goals
What are you writing for? If you rewrite all your product descriptions, how much of an increase in sales or organic traffic do you hope to achieve? If you decide to write a business blog, how are you going to judge its success or failure? What analytics are in place to gauge if rewriting your website was a worthy endeavor?
If you want to make the most of your business’ writing, it needs to start with a plan. Everything needs to be written down and shared so everyone is on the same page. If this sounds overwhelming, it’s because it can be. Call Be Locally SEO and let the experts help with your entire content needs, from the early planning and strategy stages to execution and easy-to-understand analyses.
Want to learn more about blogging? Our expert recommends: