When it comes to planning, producing, and publishing content, seasoned content marketers know that manual systems just don’t cut it.
Version control, streamlined approval processes, and up-to-date editorial calendars are essential ingredients of successful content marketing efforts. Leave one out, and you risk dismantling entire campaigns.
To succeed, content marketers need software.
Many organizations have identified this need. To fill it, they’re often deciding between project management tools and content marketing software.
Project management tools—like Basecamp, Trello, and JIRA—are great at establishing processes and prioritizing tasks. But for marketers—particularly revenue marketers—there are important limitations to consider with PM software.
Even though there’s overlap in features and functions, content marketing software and project management software were built to achieve different goals and serve fundamentally different purposes. So when choosing between one or the other, ask yourself these three questions to decide which is right for your organization.
Do You Build Content Campaigns Around Themes or Business Objectives?
Project management software is all about getting things done in the most efficient way possible. These tools identify tasks, who is responsible for submitting, editing, and approving the task, and when that task is complete. Bing. Bang. Boom. But in the crazy world of content, things are a lot more complicated. It’s not just about getting content out the door.
Content marketers must identify appropriate themes that align with business objectives, the type of content that will support those themes, and the detailed tasks associated with those content types. They’re responsible for keeping track of versions, optimizing content for SEO, scheduling content delivery, identifying design needs, implementing paid advertising campaigns, maintaining and promoting across social platforms, among other tasks. Trying to cram all of these moving pieces into a system that isn’t built to support them is impossible, and will frustrate the most well-intentioned marketing teams.
Content marketing software provides the right tools to manage content marketing efforts from beginning to end and valuable insight into your marketing KPIs. It reveals how your content is performing against your business goals—such as lead, opportunity, and revenue generation—and allows you to adjust your strategy accordingly.
Do Integrations with Different Marketing Tools and Channels Matter to You?
For managing workflows, project management software does a fantastic job. But to actually complete each of those tasks, you’re often maneuvering between multiple platforms and tools. For example, to create a blog post, you need to log in to a CMS like WordPress. To share content on social media, you need to log in to your social media platform. To analyze how well content is performing, you need to head into a tool like Google Analytics.
CM platforms integrate with the tools content marketers use on a daily basis. Kapost, for instance, integrates with Hootsuite, Google Analytics, Traackr, Salesforce and Marketo, and many other platforms. This kind of integration provides one home for each piece of content, lets any team member manage their tasks in the same place, and allows for easy distribution and analysis of efforts.
Is Content Important to Your Marketing Strategy?
There are a lot of excellent project management tools out there that are tailored to certain types of teams. JIRA is great for developers. Pivitol Tracker is great for product development. Basecamp is an excellent project management tool. Trying to adapt these industry-specific tools to content marketing is like trying to fit a round peg into a square hole. Instead of delivering streamlined content processes, these tools will foster content chaos.
None of this is that surprising. I don’t shop at Best Buy for groceries and you shouldn’t rely on Trello to streamline your content campaigns. Identify what you need, and invest in the tool that will provide it.
In 2014, companies will invest more of their budget in developing content than ever before. If they don’t invest in software to help manage all of that content, they risk wasting valuable time, money, resources, and effort.