There’s usually one of two problems people tend to have in their business: a lack of content or an abundance of content that they’re not sure how to manage. If you’re dealing with the latter, you might feel like your content strategy is a mess… which can put you off from launching and growing. An effective content management process can solve that for you.
The thing is, having a backlog of content shouldn’t knock you off your game. Instead, look at it as a big win. With a little intention and strategy, you can take your content backlog and make it into a treasure trove of value for your site and your audience with a solid content management process. Plus, if you’re dealing with the opposite problem, you can learn how to build a strategic backlog that works for you… instead of the other way around.
Start With Your Content Pillars
So much of a great content strategy comes back to the idea of content pillars, which can give you guidelines, touchpoints and a road map for your entire business. It’s really all about asking yourself these questions: what do you want your business to stand for? What tells your brand story? What excites your audience? What gives your audience the answers they need?
When you define what you stand for as a business, finding content pillars that resonate becomes easy. After all, it’s all about creating content that speaks to your brand and gives value to your audience. Take the time to define your content pillars and tailor your existing content down to fit in on those content pillars. This is the first step to a solid content management system. This might mean that some of your content might not be so great for your business… but it also might mean that the grand majority of it is. It might just need a little bit of tweaking, and that’s doable.
If you’re in the “no content, please help” camp, work to create content that fits only into those pillars. It works — I promise — and it’s my #1 tip for those looking to create a strategy that people can actually, truly benefit from.
When It Comes to Content Management, Make Small, Simple Fixes
If you feel like your entire batch of content needs tons of tweaking, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by your entire backlog. Instead of focusing on the tough pieces of the puzzle, take your time to help your content inform your business. Don’t jump into throwing away mountains of old content, but rather work to create relevant freebies that align with your brand and can intermingle with your content. Don’t feel anxious about off-brand past blog posts. Simply edit them with a call to action that fits your current goals.
Create an action plan as part of your content management process with small, attainable milestones as you work through those little fixes and adjustments. It’s not about throwing away piles of hard work — it’s about honing them down to align with your business so that they can work as hard for you as you did to create them.
Keep Creating Content to Manage
Regardless of how much content you have (or don’t have), never stop looking for inspiration. The best content strategies grow right alongside you, which means that they’re always evolving and unwinding. Whether you keep a notebook by your desk or have a shared note with your team, let inspiration come when it does. You can write or shoot something in December, and publish it in April. There’s no rules except the ones you create. Just make sure you have somewhere to host all of your ideas as they come to you! A project management tool like Trello or Asana can also act as a great content bank for you to store ideas until you’re ready to use them.
If there’s one thing I’ve learned in business, it’s that nothing will ever be perfect for a launch. There will never be a perfect time, or a perfect content strategy, or a perfect website. Everything’s always a work in progress — that, my friend, is business! Take your content backlog and make it into the powerhouse you know it can be. If you’re looking for a little help in the strategy department, my 12-page content strategy checklist will help you create purposeful content that aligns with your goals and unlock the brand stories in your head so you can launch (and keep launching!) with content you’re proud of.