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What is a Content Management Workflow? Why You Need One in 2022

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What is a Content Management Workflow? Why You Need One in 2022

Creating an effective content workflow is a lot like baking a cake. If you accidentally pour unfinished batter into an unprepared pan, the damage is done. You can’t go back and prep the pan after the fact.

Imagine your cake batter is your content, and the cake pan is its publication. If your content goes straight from the writer to your consumers, you are running a lot of risks. You must first edit and fact-check the content before publication and distribution. Readers become disinterested or upset at careless, incorrect content. And once the information is out there, it is nearly impossible to recover.

Having the right people in place on your content team is not enough. To create quality content every time you post, your company needs to outline its processes in a content workflow.

In this post, we’ll cover the topic of content workflow — what it is, how to manage it, and how you can create one for your business.

Strategists, writers, editors, and managers are people you would have on your content team. Their tasks, seen in a workflow, include planning, writing, editing, publishing, and more; however, each function is not necessary for every content type.

Depending on the content type, your workflow will change. Businesses can publish various content like newsletters, blog posts, and social media posts. The content workflow is different for each asset. For example, compare the publication of a newsletter and a social media post. The most evident difference in this process is that the content types go through different channels. Once you break down the workflows, you will discover that each may require separate people, processes, tools, and resources.

With so many moving pieces necessary for creating a content workflow, managing the process becomes a top priority.

Content Workflow Management

If left untamed, your content workflow can become complicated and confusing for your team. To successfully manage your workflow, start by outlining the processes, people, and tools involved in the content creation process.

Processes

To manage your content workflow, identify the steps needed to create content. They are:

  1. Strategizing
  2. Planning
  3. Creating
  4. Reviewing
  5. Publishing
  6. Analyzing
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While this is the basic workflow for content, each step has supplementary processes depending on the content type. You can build these extra steps as you create your content workflow. At this stage, it’s helpful to outline a content strategy.

People

An effective content workflow focuses on the processes needed to publish content, but people are arguably the most vital part. One aspect of managing content workflow is identifying and managing key players. These people are responsible for fulfilling the steps in the content creation process listed above. For example, for strategizing, you’d need a strategist. For reviewing, you’d need an editor.

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In conjunction with managing your people and their processes, content workflow management also covers the tools needed to complete the work.

Tools

For your content team to fulfill their roles and work through content creation processes, they need tools. Content has to be created, edited, shared or managed somewhere. Managing your team’s content workflow means managing the tools it needs.

Content management systems, like CMS Hub, are essential for publishing blog posts. Canva and Adobe Photoshop are great tools for design. These are just three of the many tools your company might add to its content tech stack.

As the content marketing industry booms, your business needs to expand to accommodate this growth. This expansion reflects an increase in the people, processes, and tools associated with your content workflow. The more comprehensive your workflow becomes, the more daunting it is to manage; however, integrating content workflow software can solve the problem.

Content Workflow Software

Content workflow software, or a workflow management system, is a program that manages the content creation process through planning, production, and publication. Instead of teams using multiple methods and approaches to monitor the content process, workflow management systems help you create a centralized location for your team to visualize its processes. It promotes the execution of your content strategy in alignment with company goals.

The added benefits of using content workflow software include:

  • An increase in productivity
  • A reduction in errors
  • An improvement in workplace collaboration

Increase In Productivity

Without using a content workflow software tool, team members are left with extra work and time wasted. These issues are removed with content workflow software because it is automated. It eliminates sending email updates because the software sends them for you. Content teams don’t have to guess the timeline of a project because the system manages it for them. Everything happens quickly and efficiently.

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Reduction In Errors

Nothing is perfect, and you can’t expect the same from your content workflow. Even so, content workflow software helps reduce errors. It helps your team stay ahead of deadlines. It allows you to identify what processes in the content workflow need adjustment. Content management software gives your company the tools for improving your workflow.

Improvement In Workplace Collaboration

Content management software improves workplace collaboration between team members and the apps and platforms they use. Executing your content strategy requires many different people who use various tools. Workflow management software allows your team to notify and update another member while the software integrates with several content management systems, email providers, messaging services, and social media platforms.

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To take advantage of the benefits of using content workflow software, learn more about Marketing Hub and how its marketing automation technology simplifies tasks.

Content Workflow Template

Content workflow software is fundamental in keeping up with your content strategy; however, you need the appropriate steps to build your workflow. Only then can you get the most out of the software. Where do you begin? Here’s how you can create your content workflow.

How to Create a Content Workflow

The people, processes, and tools necessary for executing your content strategy are helpful markers in creating your content workflow. To create a content workflow, you need to:

  1. Decide what content to create.
  2. Create a breakdown of actionable tasks.
  3. Assign roles.
  4. Determine the time associated with each task.
  5. Document your content workflow.

Decide what content to create.

First, decide “what” you are creating. Is it a social media post? Is it a newsletter? Your company has the choice of creating many content types like infographics, blog posts, video content, and more, and you will need to create a workflow for each.

Create a breakdown of actionable tasks.

Once you are focused on a particular content type, outline the necessary steps needed to get it from strategy to publication. Consider this sample workflow for a blog post. Its process might look like this:

Strategizing > Planning > Creating > Editing > Publishing > Analyzing

While these are broad tasks for creating a blog, this is where it needs to expand. Strategizing typically includes performing content audits, creating buyer personas, and conducting keyword research. Editing might involve implementing SEO techniques or adding images and links.

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Every step in the process needs to be accounted for so it can be assigned to the appropriate team member.

Assign roles.

After you have the tasks for your content process, it’s time to decide who does them. This step can help identify if anyone is at capacity in their role and if you need to bring in additional members. Using our blog example above, this is how you might assign roles.

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  • Strategizing > Content Strategist
  • Planning > Content Manager
  • Writing > Copywriter
  • Editing > Editor
  • Publishing > Content Manager
  • Analyzing > Content Manager

After assigning responsibility for each task, determine how much time is necessary for completion.

Determine the time needed for each task.

To determine how much time you need for each task, consult your content team. How much time does your writer say it takes them to write a 500-word post? What about a 2500-word post? Use the length of time they give you and build in additional time. It can help your company avoid working with tight timelines or missing deadlines.

After this step, your content workflow might look like:

  • Strategizing > Content Strategist (1 day)
  • Planning > Content Manager (<1 day)
  • Writing > Copywriter (2 days)
  • Editing > Editor (1 day)
  • Publishing > Content Manager (<1 day)
  • Analyzing > Content Manager (Ongoing)

Once you have outlined a process for the tasks, people, and length of time needed for creating your content, your content workflow is complete.

Document your content workflow.

The last step in creating your content workflow is documenting it. Companies typically use standard operating procedures (SOPs) to keep their teams aligned with the process. Marketing Hub, Trello, and Evernote are examples of systems that give teams easy access to documents like SOPs.

Content workflows work, so you don’t have to.

Content creation isn’t simple. There are many elements in publishing content and successfully executing your content strategy. Creating a content workflow helps your team stay on task by increasing productivity, reducing errors, and improving workplace collaboration. The predetermined flow of each process makes it easy, but managing individual tasks becomes increasingly chaotic without content workflow software.

When managing how your content transforms from an idea to publication, content workflows handle the heavy lifting.

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MARKETING

How to Blog When You Have No Time

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How to Blog When You Have No Time

Finding the time to blog is a frequent challenge for many marketers. Marketers often wear many hats and it can be difficult to focus long enough to churn out quality articles when you’re pressed for time.

How to blog when you have no time? We spoke with author and marketing expert David Meerman Scotton how to avoid common time management mistakes by developing a routine.

No matter what you’ve got on your marketing plate, it won’t get done without proper time management. Learning how to make the most of your time will greatly affect your productivity and overall success as a blogger.

Why is blogging time management important?

When it comes to creating content, maintaining consistency is key. This is why blogging time management is so important. You may not always feel motivated to create on a regular basis, but establishing a schedule will help you to stay consistent with your blog output.

For example, you may find that you’re better at writing in the mornings. So you can set aside 2 to 3 hours each morning to work on writing based on how many articles you’d like to produce each week.

Create a content calendar to help you plan your content in advance and set reasonable deadlines. Make note of holidays or seasonal events that may impact your content schedule.

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Getting organized will help you set and achieve goals for your blog. If you’re starting from scratch, check out our guide to starting a blog.

How to Blog When You Have No Time

1. Use blog templates.

An easy way to jump-startyour creative process is to start with a template. Why suffer through writer’s block staring at a blank document if you don’t have to? HubSpot’s free blog post templatescan help you format your article and get started writing faster than starting from scratch.

[Include screenshot]

Templates function as an easy to follow outline where you can organize your thoughts and start to flesh out your content. HubSpot’s offer includes six templates ranging from how-to posts to pillar pages and infographics.

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2. Develop a blogging routine.

In many ways blogging reminds David of exercising. In order to be successful at it, you will need to develop a routine. “It is programmed in,” David says. “It is about building it into your life and making it a second nature, like running in the mornings or doing yoga after work.”

Dedicate time each day to writing or allocate one to two designated writing days per week. Block time off on your calendar and turn off messaging apps to avoid interruptions while you write.

Once you’ve gotten organized and created a routine, you may find you had more time to write than previously thought.

3. Keep a list of ideas.

One way to save time coming up with content is to make sure you always have a running list of fresh ideas to work with. That way you’re not scrambling at the last minute for worthy topics.

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Creating topic clusterscan help you flesh out your blog content strategy. A topic clusteris multiplearticles grouped by a shared topic or related topic. For example, you may have one pillar page that gives a broad overview of a topic. From there, you can create more in-depth, specific articles on related subtopics.

This will not only help you plan content but organize your site architecture as well.

4. Perform research prior to writing.

It’s much easier to write when you have all the pertinent information you want to include in one place. Research your chosen topic before sitting down to write and organize the information in a quick outline.

Include any keyword researchin this process so you can ensure your content aligns with what readers are searching for online. This way when you sit down to write, your only job is to write — not look up new facts.

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5. Don’t edit while writing.

When writing it’s very tempting to want to stop and make corrections. Don’t do this. It breaks your writing flow.

Instead, write a rough draft withjust pops into your mind first. Follow your train of thought without stopping to fix typos or edit. The goal is to just get your thoughts on the page. Once your initial draft is written, you can always go back and make changes.

6. Perform article updates.

Another strategy is to build upon existing content by performing an article update. Giving your older content a refresh is not only good for SEO and your readers, but it can be a quick win for adding new content in a time crunch.

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With older content, you may need to include additional research and update it for accuracy, but it generally takes less time than writing a new article from scratch. Review your existing content. Are there articles you can do a deeper dive on? Have there been industry advancements you can include? Is there a new angle to explore?

7. Find content ideas wherever you go.

By making blogging a life routine, you will come across creative content ideas much more frequently. Keep an open mind, observe new things that interest you personally and find ways to turn them into fodder for a blog post. By noticing world dynamics that get you excited and relating them to your audience, the process of blogging becomes a lot more natural and fun.

Accumulate content ideas from different situations in life and find ways to apply them to your industry.

8. Hire a freelancer.

Sometimes your workload is just too heavy and your efforts can be better used elsewhere. If you have the resources and budget to do it, hiring outside help may also be a great option.

Sites like Upwork, Contenta, and MediaBistro make it easy to find writing professionals. If looking to generate content on a larger scale, consider working with a content agency.

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Blog Like A Pro

Creating content with a consistent cadence is an obstacle busy marketers frequently struggle with. Creating a schedule and mastering blogging time management will allow you to create even when you’re short on time.

This article was originally published in December 2010 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.

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