Content Marketing, Owned Media, Shared Media
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Have you bought into the value of content marketing, only to realize how much of a struggle it is to get the rest of your company on board?

You’re not alone.

With the adoption of anything new within an organization, there are generally the champions of the cause and a lot of people who need to be sold on the idea.

It seems backward, but you’re more likely to find a CEO who understands the value of SEO and social media before they understand why they should adopt a more holistic content marketing strategy. And when they do finally buy into the idea, the challenge of creating a culture of content creation can become a real struggle.

It’s an uphill battle, but over time you can succeed in creating a collaborative culture around content creation. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

Play to Your Strengths

People are probably pretty busy in your office. The staff is probably overworked, so their time is already stretched thin over a lot of other priorities. Management is likely too busy to bother. Chances are, neither of them will understand the value of creating content in the beginning, especially if they aren’t writers.

In both cases, you need to sell them on how content marketing relates to them, and find out how they feel most comfortable in the creation process.

For example, if one of your managers is a prolific speaker and presenter but doesn’t like writing, consider helping them produce short form video or a podcast. Content doesn’t have to be written; it can be anything you want to create that helps tell your story.

Alternatively, if some of your staff members are already active on social media, equip them with the tools to help manage your organization’s social profiles. Empower them to become an elite team of photographers and promoters of special events and daily office life.

You can also repurpose existing assets onto new platforms to fill in your publication gaps. Upload your slide decks or ad reprints to SlideShare, or pull ideas and stats from your completed reports.

Takeaways:

  • Illustrate the personal relevance of your content marketing strategy to each member of your team.
  • Play to their creative strengths, rather than fitting them into one type of content.
  • Repurpose what you already have to build out your content library.

Think Like a Publisher

How you structure the content creation within your company is key to its success. Simply creating an editorial calendar and telling your team to “start making stuff” is not enough. There must be a clear direction to your content marketing efforts.

Every content piece assigned to the editorial calendar should have a specific objective in mind – no matter what medium it is – that will give your message and your team clear direction.

Think deeply about your buyer personas, keywords, and voice. Learn to be comfortable saying no to ideas that don’t align with your focus and editorial guidelines. Your entire team should have a knowledge – and part ownership – of that vision.

Remember, this is a collaboration. Your team should continue to feel like they are part of something meaningful for both your company and for themselves.

Takeaways:

  • Define the story you want to tell and your intended audience down to the finest details.
  • Design your content strategy around that story, and make sure it speaks directly to your audience.
  • Educate your team and empower them to share your vision.

Hold Them Accountable

If you don’t already have one, consider hiring an editor to manage your editorial calendar.

When all ideas and finished content funnel through one person, it ensures your brand’s voice and the quality of the content remains consistent. An editor will carry a deep understanding of your organization’s goals, story and target audience to keep the rest of the content team on track.

Holding employees accountable for content is difficult, especially if they haven’t been tasked with creating it in the past. This is why their belief in the organization’s story and their role in contributing to it is so crucial. By building a culture around your content strategy, rather than simply assigning people “jobs,” they will understand why it’s important and be more willing to proactively contribute to the bigger story overall.

As a business, you must be willing to care about your audience before they care about you. As an employer, it works the same way. If you want your employees to continue to care, recognize them as a vital part of the organization every opportunity that you can.

Takeaways:

  • Find a managing editor to keep your objectives, vision and content aligned.
  • Help your team members understand how vital their roles are in the process by recognizing and educating them with internal content.
  • Build a culture around your content creation engine by empowering your team and holding them to the highest expectation of quality.

With the right motivation and direction, all employees can contribute to the content ecosystem within your organization. Each individual must be empowered to create and share their unique stories, allowing them to become one small part of the content creation engine in your organization working together to drive your marketing strategy toward its goals.

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