Want to know the key to efficient marketing workflow? Simplicity.
How can your organization get there? Start with an honest review of your marketing workflow in play right now, then rethink and rework pain points by asking one question…
How does this contribute or take away from making marketing workflow more efficient?
91% of B2B marketers claim to use content marketing, but only 42% say they are effective at it. So, focusing on the latest and greatest marketing strategies does nothing for B2B organizations unless there’s a clear, simple, mindful workflow to execute those strategies company-wide.
When various departments are involved in the same marketing effort, teams need an easy way to stay coordinated and on track towards a common goal, while reducing bottlenecks in the content development process. It’s easy for teams to get confused, mis-communicate, or wander “off path” once ideation is complete, because it’s the creative, fun part of the process that’s all possibilities and no expectations or tasks.
There is a way to turn things around, get focused and ditch the workflow bottlenecks that loiter like bored teenagers on summer evening.
Give your workflow a make-under to shape it into a lean, mean, action-oriented internal marketing tool. How? Craft a one-team mentality kind of process centered around building efficient marketing workflow, and use that same process to prepare for each marketing campaign.
Creating a No-Nonsense, Efficient Marketing Workflow
Taking the pain out of marketing workflow is possible—if you can give up the way your organization is doing things right now. Get ready to rework the sequence of processes that govern the tactical elements of creating and executing campaigns, otherwise known as workflow.
A few insider tips to help get you started:
Content marketing needs a purpose, so get clear on the purpose behind the marketing from the start. What’s the “why?”
Nothing is more inefficient than marketing waste. Documents developed for a 1-time purpose or use, or created by several individual departments yet serve the same purpose, are a common example of wasteful marketing. To maximize time and effort, bring company team leads together to develop themes for content and immediate marketing needs.
Clarity and agreement on content themes that integrate insights on business goals, customer needs and industry trends from all departments is key for clarity. Call together a team lead “editorial board” to discuss topics such as:
- What are customers asking for?
- Are there key information loopholes irritating customers?
- What content is needed to drive traffic and support the latest product/service?
Tackling key questions as a team is the best and easiest way to create content that’s both useful as well as filling a specific need for customers and employees. Then, you can build a workflow around those specific types of content.
Create content pillars focused on a single content theme per campaign, but flexible enough to repurpose into different marketing assets.
Once the team has identified key content themes, it’s time to talk content pillars. A content pillar is the most substantial part of a marketing campaign. Like the entree of a meal, it’s the main draw for people and needs to offer value, tips, or insight to educate customers on an product, service or topic.
Choose a topic for the content pillar that can easily be repurposed into different assets such as an e-book, webinar, blog posts and more. Some people dig social media while others get giggles from videos. Define your asset list and the repurposing options available that make sense for the business and target market. Use it as your bible.
Make note of workflow patterns for specific content types and build a reusable template.
Each content asset has key tasks that will always repeat. Note what they are and create a workflow template for them to make future creation of similar assets easier and faster. Webinars, for example, have core steps that always need to be managed, including choosing a topic, date, presenters. etc. Templates are also great groundwork for determining which tasks may benefit from workflow automation through content marketing software.
Lock down project management flow and tasks by assigning dates and responsibilities to specific people and tracking progress.
Project management can sometimes feel like a runaway train. When this happens, teams are out of sync and content suffers, especially when content pillars are managed with a silo mentality. Assign a “campaign owner” as a project lead to help manage details like assets and asset owners, content schedules and status updates and hold people responsible. The added bonus? One person keeping an eye on all the moving parts can easily create a pre-launch checklist with everything needed for a successful launch. This helps eliminate bottlenecks before they start.
Create a clear approval process and content schedule, and stick to it.
A little planning and strong communication between the campaign owner and essential team members goes a long way in meeting deadlines. Bottlenecks in the approval process are one of the biggest influences on a launch date, so establish a clear checklist, including the number of drafts as well as who gets final approval. Establish an agreement with key content stakeholders and share it with everyone on the project.
In addition, it helps to merge editorial calendars among teams to eliminate any confusion. When the whole marketing team operates on the same schedule, something magical happens: clarity, solidarity, and productivity!
Building efficient marketing workflow can be simple—if you keep it simple. These insider tips make the entire content development and management process more targeted from the get-go, while offering key tools and checkpoints to keep efforts not only on track but also on deadline.