Remember that fateful night in October of 2006 when Google Docs hit the scene? It’s okay if you don’t—I’ll admit I had to Google it.
The web-based Docs and Spreadsheets were the hottest tools in town. Well, at least compared to their clunky ancestors Microsoft Word and Excel. Yet while these readily available apps may be helpful in a pinch, the Google Suite is no way to adequately execute an ongoing content strategy. And that’s what we’re here to do.
3 Reasons Google Docs Can’t Support Your Content Strategy
Keeping in mind that Docs need to play nice with other Google Apps and is free to use, the subsequent result is a product intended for the common Google user. If you’re a forward-thinking marketer corralling content from the nooks and crannies of your organization, chances are good you graduated from common Googler status many moons ago.
It’s time to step up to the plate and use a platform designed with content creation at its core.
If you’re still not convinced, here are a few concrete reasons why you should ditch the Docs for the sake of your marketing content.
1. Process Leads to Improvement
Creating and implementing a robust content strategy means there are a number of stakeholders contributing to a given piece. If you were to use Google Docs, this means manually sharing a document with said stakeholders and the onslaught of accompanying questions:
- Should I use their company email address or ask if they’ve got Gmail?
- Do they know how to track revisions?
- Will they even see the invitation to edit?
- When is my feedback due?
- Will I see the final draft before it’s published?
On the contrary, using a platform built for multiple contributors and a streamlined process eliminates all of this confusion.
You can swiftly invite the right contributors for the piece. Then, once all stakeholders have chimed in, a content marketing manager or editor is able to take the stage. Their role in the chain is to review the information and ensure that tone and style are on-brand, among other duties. This systematic contribution cycle is nowhere to be found when using Google Docs.
2. Content Needs a Calendar
Timing is everything. You’ve heard it in love and life, and the same is true for content creation. If your organization needs to publish a new piece on a specific day and time, there are generally five or more things that need to happen before it goes live. This is where utilizing an editorial calendar comes in handy. Maintaining one will also provide the roadmap needed to consistently produce top-notch content.
Since Google Docs and Google Calendar are mutually exclusive, it’s paramount that your content team is operating outside of Google. Otherwise, deadlines (if set) will be missed and the struggle to be consistently great will become very real.
3. Docs Aren’t Actionable
As mentioned earlier, Google tends to play nice with other Google Apps, but not with external applications or platforms. Even if your company is able to create a worthy piece of content within Docs, you’ve still got a ways to go. Someone will have to format the piece, then export to the proper platform, and finally hit publish. That’s a lot of responsibility.
On the contrary, a system built for publishing content will have workflows and integrations in place for these actions. They’ll play nice with your social stream, allow for added SEO tagging, and more, so that your content is working for you, not against you. You can’t afford otherwise.
The truth is, Google Docs, while convenient for informal collaboration, is not suitable to handle the content needs of your organization. You’ve spent the time sourcing SMEs and have likely coordinated your strategy with marketing and sales, so why drop the ball where it matters most?
There’s a reason that salespeople have graduated from spreadsheets and it’s time content marketers did the same. You owe it to yourself. As creating and publishing content continues to prove worthy to the bottom line, you’ll want to look past Docs and find a product meant for content.
Your organization will thank you.