Content Management & Strategy As Pieces Of The Digital Marketing Puzzle
The state of the content ecosystem is ever changing. As the practice of curating captivating content continually evolves, marketers in the industry are learning to adapt and evolve with it.
Between keeping up with web content management and developing successful content strategies, navigating a content-driven path is a winding one.
Luckily, in the latest #FlipMyFunnel episode featuring Content Matters, guest host Barb Mosher Zinck digs deep into content strategy and management where digital content and marketing pros talk shop.
Cathy McKnight, VP of Strategy at Content Advisory and Partner at Digital Clarity Group, guides us through building the right foundation to support content and the critical role content operations plays in building successful content-driven experiences.
“My personal obsession right now is content operations and strategy, and the impact that it has on overall content success. So whether you’re looking at straight content or content marketing, I’m really finding that getting that baseline strategy and operational element sorted out, is a critical component,” Cathy said.
“It’s important to have someone on your team who understands both technology and its impact on content and business.”
Cathy knows her stuff when it comes to consulting content management. She explains that having a solid grasp on both the technology side and the business side of content is fundamental, but so is understanding the best implementation of both.
She helps companie’s build their “stack,” pointing out what pieces are missing, and how to not over or under invest in it. A marketing tech stack (MarTech Stack or ‘stack’) is the technology marketers leverage to plan, measure and execute content marketing activities.
No matter how you’re managing your tech, you want it to be easy to support. A good stack should be organized and purposeful — with all its pieces working together.
Cathy stacks it up like this:
- Content Management System (CMS)
- Digital Asset Management (DAM)
- Google Analytics (GA)
- Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
“Manage your content assets in a way that makes it easy to respect parameters of use.”
Content Management System (CMS)
“I do believe content management is still the anchor to good content and content marketing,” Cathy said.
WIth content management systems like WordPress, SquareSpace, and WIX, content can rest on an interface. But it’s important to find a CMS that best suits the individual needs of your company.
Typically, most CMSs offer user-friendly and flexible solutions to hosting content. It’s simply a matter of knowing your requirements before you seek solutions.
Digital Asset Management
Today, DAM is becoming an important second to CMS and is a key piece of the stack.
Digital assets are everywhere. Whether it’s your company logos, images, videos, or newsletters, having a central source to easily store, organize, manage, and distribute digital content is crucial.
Several different components make up a great digital asset management. However, before jumping into investing into a digital asset management system, it’s important to obtain the right requirements.
- What your organization is looking to achieve
- What is needed from the system
Not only is DAM essential for asset storage and brand management, but companies need to be able to manage licensing and make sure that when assets are acquired, there are parameters around their use, making it difficult for an organization to abuse that.
Cathy recommends OpenText for setting a bar when it comes to media management. They’ve got excellent systems for indexing the management of licensing, the capabilities of versioning, and tracking.
“Find out what’s working and what’s not, today. Don’t change things for the sake of changing.”
Managing and tracking high-volume content can be a struggle to keep up with. Google Analytics allows content managers to track website traffic to see what content is most effective, and what’s not. It also analyzes customer behavior and gives insight to keywords and what sources website traffic is coming from.
“Google Analytics gets better all the time,” Cathy said. “I can’t think of a single client that I have worked with over the last probably five years that doesn’t have Google Analytics in their system somewhere because it is so accessible.”
Outside of GA, CMSs like Adobe and Sitecore have built-in analytics components. Again, it’s about choosing which solution works best for your company’s particular needs and goals.
Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
Think about the users and who you’re trying to support.
Improving business relationships is the main goal of CRM. Staying connected to customers and potential new customers helps companies both maintain retention and improve profitability.
Whichever approach you chose to take when finding the right content strategy, Cathy says it comes down to that primary research internally.
- Find out what is working by gauging with different parts of your organization outside of the content or marketing team.
- Get people engaged with the content to be able to provide the feedback.
- Go out and ask: “What do you need from the website?” Make it as simple as that for people who aren’t going to be actually managing the content themselves.
Find out what’s working, what’s not, and don’t change things for the sake of changing.
Owning the Process
Creating a content strategy is about providing the ability to be efficient and effective at scale. It boils down to putting parameters and processes around the implementation to make it more efficient and effective in order to take content operations more seriously.
You can take Cathy’s word on it: “Whether it’s a small 150-person organization or it’s a 1000’s multinational person organization, having a focus on how content works and contributes to the organization and a process for getting it out there is supercritical, as painful as it is to put in. It really needs to be a strategic initiative and aligned with the corporate goals.”
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