Newfangled works with independent agencies to create lead development web platforms for their clients.

Newfangled works with independent agencies to create lead development web platforms for their clients.

The Content Commitment

at 2:00 pm

Here I am going to indulge myself, and with language fit for Tarzan, Frankenstein or Tonto, get right to the bottom line about content strategy:

"You, write."

Sure, this is a reduction, but the necessary commitment needs to be realized, not forgotten or postponed, if your site is expected to improve in search rankings, attract the right visitors and keep a growing portion of them coming back as interested leads ready to take the step and convert.

In A Website that Works, Mark O'Brien succinctly explains what's needed to maintain a content strategy for a healthy lead-generating website, outlines why a strategy is needed in the first place, and clarifies the advantages of various content strategy platforms. 

Chris Butler's January newsletter justifies the time that writing will take, and he suggests limiting the scope of a strategy, delegating work to set goals and enforce editorial quality and to keep fresh ideas coming.

I have worked on many projects where, through the collaborative prototyping phase, we discuss the resources required to begin and continue content creation.   Many client plans to start a blog and/or a newsletter, and we often hear about what a challenge that this can be.  Blogs can be abandoned, newsletters that were planned can be left unpublished. Even news items, (not generally as great for lead generation, but new indexable content at least) after the big plans made while prototyping, can dwindle and the same featured few can linger on a homepage.

So, back to the basic message: Content Strategy means writing, on a schedule, pieces that will engage your intended audience. In most cases this means that someone in your organization will have to write, and ideally someone will have to act as editor--not necessarily revising the content, but establishing a schedule and keeping writer(s) accountable. Someone needs to act as CMS administrator too, to get the content onto the site and make it pretty, probably with images, and to apply useful meta data.

Here are a few more resources to keep make this easier:  

Newsletter: Four Stages of Content Marketing 

Blogpost: Three Common Content Strategy Platforms

Blogpost: Some Newsletter Formatting Tips

Or, just search our site for "content strategy"

Comments

Steve Grothmann | October 4, 2012 10:01 AM
Hi Henry,

Thanks for the comment. Promotion of web content is definitely a piece of the process. In this post I'm concerned with simply reminding about the commitment to production that it takes for a content strategy platform to work. But, of course, the more one can spread news about new content the better. Announcing and linking back to new content on any satellite social media sites certainly helps. Twitter, FB, a Linked-In Group? Taking part in conversation--like commenting on blogs--can also get people linking to your site and seeing new content.

On the site itself, new content can be featured on the homepage and/or sectional landing pages, and there can be a secondary level of navigation between related content via suggested related resources, which can work by a CMS controlled tagging or category system. This is kind of internal, on site promotion.

Of course, all new content should be nicely framed with search-conscious meta titles, H1 titles and link names, to help its visibility to Google.
Henry | October 3, 2012 2:32 PM
Newfangled frequently recommends that business websites include an ongoing stream of fresh content, and the points made on this blog make sense. The focus here seems to be on the generation of content, especially for blogs. But is simply writing and posting the content enough? Or does one also have to do an active job of promoting it? If so, what are the most effective ways of promoting content and how deep into promotional efforts does one need to go?

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