CMOs say that building out content marketing is the second most important initiative, only falling behind measuring ROI. (IDC) Yet, most marketing organizations don’t have a culture that reveres content creation. If you truly want to succeed at content marketing, you have to transform your marketing team’s culture to be truly content-creation focused.
If you are questioning this statement, then do me a favor and answer these questions.
1) How many people are on your marketing team?
2) How many people are responsible for creating content?
3) What is the ratio of marketing team members to content creators?
4) How many pieces of content did these folks create this year?
The ratio is pretty dismal at most organizations with which I have worked. For example, I worked with one client that had about fifteen marketers, only one of whom was really responsible for creating content. Another client had seven marketers and none were responsible for creating content. Both of these companies stated content marketing was their core strategy, yet their structure seemed to say otherwise.
In the first two posts of this series, “How to Start Building a Continuous Content Pipeline” and “How to Meet Your B2B Content Needs,” I explained that the first steps to producing a consistent flow of content were simply to get started writing and to do so on a regular rhythm. These posts asked the reader to start writing on a regular rhythm, but for a marketing team to be successful, the whole team must create content on a regular rhythm.
If you truly believe content is a critical aspect of your marketing strategy, then everyone on the team should be responsible for ensuring that you are producing a consistent funnel of content. Otherwise, it is too easy for those trying to create content to be distracted by meetings and fire drills.
The easiest way to do this is to block off the first hour of every morning for content creation. Just like brushing our teeth is the first thing everyone does when they wake up, creating content should be the first thing everyone does when they come into work.
This doesn’t mean everyone is expected to write a whitepaper or blog post. Today’s marketing requires teams to have technical people who simply may not be good or practiced at writing. It’s quite possible the marketing automation manager doesn’t have intimate knowledge of the company’s product or industry, but that doesn’t mean they can’t help with the content creation process.
Team members who aren’t good at writing could help conduct research for an infographic or interview an industry expert. Team members who are skilled in grammar but who are not necessarily the right person to be writing an eBook could proof during this time. Designers could create custom images for blog posts, infographics or videos. All the different possibilities will be touched on in later posts, but for now it is paramount that you make a conscious decision to do your part to transform your marketing team’s culture to be truly content-creation focused.