Storytelling has been around for a while. It’s not that new at all, despite its headline-grabbing ability in the content marketing world right now. It’s not even new for businesses. Organizational storytelling has been around for over 100 years.. Unfortunately, the latest iterations of organizational storytelling seems to make processes harder, more cumbersome and sometimes even obstructionistic than ever before.
Content creators have to go through unnecessary steps to get stories approved and systems are outdated. Consequently, we stick with publishing less-than-useful content because it’s easier to get approved and published.
Certainly life can and is complicated. Content marketing can be as well, but that doesn’t mean we can’t make it simpler. With that, let me explain how I know we can get there together.
Sign up in the sidebar of this post to receive weekly Rock Content Newsletters by email!
My pillars of efficient content marketing
Once you have a solid content marketing strategy in place, it comes down to the right mix of three pieces. Let’s take a quick look to give you an idea of what we’ll be covering during my weekly posts and monthly webinars.
Strategic, useful and efficient workflows
To tell the best stories, it’s highly important to have a strategy. Why would we ever create and share content that doesn’t have some kind of purpose? But people do. All the time.
On the flipside, don’t let this stop you from creating useful content! Strategy and goals are important, of course, but so are the workflows to actually implement the strategy.
No one wants workflows and processes just for the sake of having them. If a workflow doesn’t help us achieve our goal of publishing stories to reach our business goals, why would we ever stick with them? But if they help us be more efficient and productive, then there’s definitely a time and place for them.
Team members’ skills
Of course, the best strategy and best workflow only work when team members’ skills align and are used to their strengths. While it might make sense from a budget perspective to have generalists, for many strategies, even generalists need to have specific strengths. Having the right team members and mix of strengths can create an optimal and well-rounded content marketing team.
The trick is to align people’s strengths to the strategic goals of the overarching team plan. So for example, you might have a really good writer and good content gatherer. In a traditional model, we might think that both jobs can easily be done by one person, but when you have the luxury of having one person who’s really good at getting those unique stories and one person who is really good at putting them down on paper, that can actually help your team be more successful long-term.
That’s just one example to share with you. In this series, I’ll cover many more stories around how to set up teams, how to align strengths, and how to make sure everyone is using their specialties for the greater strategy.
The best technology
Technology is great or annoying. When it helps us reach a goal and is easy to use, it’s loved. But when it gets in the way of things, content marketing teams hate it. Unfortunately, there are way too many content teams out there that use outdated or ineffective technologies. Of course, on the other hand sometimes technology changes so fast that it’s hard to keep up. But it’s not actually about keeping up it’s about using what helps us achieve our goals in the most effective and efficient way. There will be many more blog posts around this topic as well.
How we’ll share information around content marketing workflow issues
So those are the overarching topic areas that we will cover here in weekly blog posts. In addition, we will be offering workshops for companies to help them dive a little deeper and solve the specific problems that they have.
Finally, on the fourth Thursday of every month, we’ll offer a webinar where I’ll be answering your questions. The first one is next week. Check it out here.
Why do I care about these topics?
You might wonder why these topics are near and dear to my heart. The answer is that I grew up in the publishing world of newspapers and TV stations. I then moved to corporate storytelling.
My entire career has focused around storytelling. First I worked on telling my communities’ stories. That was as a newspaper reporter and then I started going on TV. As you might imagine the media world has changed quite a bit from when I first started in it.
As digital channels were added workflows also had to change. While I didn’t initially think of myself as a workflow guy even when I worked as a storytelling reporter a lot of things came back to workflow. How do I work with people I’m interviewing, how do I get video and how do I get that video edited. And then how would I find time to write my stories. So with all these things it was important to figure out a way to tell the most relevant stories to my audience – at that time newspaper readers for the most part.
I then moved my art and science to the business world. I started my own local startup media company which penetrated about 25% of the market in just a few months. I trained journalists on having some of the same entrepreneurial spirit. I helped nonprofits tell better stories – especially digitally and help them connect with their target audiences – usually donors, volunteers and advocates through relevant storytelling. My last stint before coming to Rock Content was in the healthcare industry. I worked with hospital systems around the United States on their content marketing strategies.
The organizations that tell useful and results-driven stories well first live them, then spot them and then share them. Basically it all comes back to workflow, strategy and of course technology. All the things I mentioned above. So now I’m pleased to say that I’ll be continuing my quest for better content marketing workflow and the most useful stories out there at Rock Content and I hope you’ll continue with me on the journey.
I hope you’ll join me on the blog every Thursday and if you have any questions or problems you like me to address just send me an email and will try to add your topic to our editorial calendar.
Christoph is Rock Content’s Vice President of Content Marketing Strategy.
He helps businesses and organizations in the Americas develop and implement strategic content marketing plans and practices by combining efficient workflows, content marketers’ skills and useful technologies.