The iAcquire blog has come a long way in the past year in terms of content quality and frequency of posting, but we’re striving to do even better. After thinking long and hard about what we want to achieve, we’ve put together this plan for how we can tackle critical issues.
More importantly, we have a feeling that we might not be alone in what we’re striving for, so we’re hoping our outline can get you jump started on fulfilling your own content goals.
Question: Before we start adding to our content calendar as it stands, we want to make sure that our posts are making it from the calendar to the blog. Content is a priority for us, but it can’t always take precedent over client work or other internal deadlines, so how do we make sure that our blog is still flourishing during our busiest weeks?
The short answer: Increase communication to find out why certain deadlines may need adjustment, and for when all else fails—have a backup plan.
Assigning deadlines isn’t enough. Whoever owns the content calendar should periodically check in with writers to see how posts are coming along and offer assistance when necessary. Just because someone pitched an awesome topic doesn’t necessarily mean he has the bandwidth or resources to carry it out, so following up can help alleviate some of his stress.
Make sure you touch base soon enough to have time to fix any problems you may come across. Leaving this conversation until the night before won’t leave you enough time to pitch in and help finish the post, create something similar to hold its place, or move other content around accordingly if those options aren’t possible.
If your current blog strategy involves completing each post as scheduled on the editorial calendar, moving content around won’t be possible if the next person isn’t prepared ahead of their deadline. For a simple solution, build up a small backlog of content that isn’t set for a certain date and use it as needed.
iAcquire’s answer: Every Monday morning, the marketing team meets to talk about each person’s tasks for the week. If at this meeting team members with content scheduled for that week give an update on their capacity to finish their post or not, we’ll have time to choose the most appropriate option to proceed.
Content that was pushed back but never rescheduled should be written to use for a later date in the event that we have a space that needs to be filled. (We have a “Failed Launches” column in Trello… all these good ideas shouldn’t go to waste).
Question: How can I increase regularly scheduled content without overburdening my team?
The short answer: make a regularly occurring feature out of something you’ve already tried that works, and add to your team to bring new offerings to the table.
If you notice that there’s a certain type of post that works really well for your blog but has just been used at random among other posts, consider taking that format and turning it into a theme that you can always post on a certain day of the week or month.
You can also periodically poll other departments to see if there’s anyone who wants to try a hand at content. Think of it as an internal guest post: you’ll get a fresh perspective and new area of expertise from someone within your own company.
iAcquire’s answer: One content sequence that we started but never formally added to the content calendar is our “This is iAcquire” video series. These are short, funny, and give great insight into our company culture. Moving forward, we will be putting out a new video once a month.
As far as adding new writers to the mix, we’re fortunate to have some new friendly faces from the iAcquire New York City and Phoenix offices who are up for the challenge. We’ll be bringing you more posts from them soon!
Question: What new forms of content can I introduce?
The short answer: Anything! Check out these 31 content ideas for some inspiration and then start brainstorming.
Seriously, there are so many types of content out there. If there’s anything you don’t personally have the capability to produce (videos, infographics…) time to reach out and see who can help make it happen.
iAcquire’s answer: One of the areas where we found we may be underutilizing content potential is in capturing what takes place outside of the office. In the future we’d love to film some of our meet ups and local speaking events for all those unable to join us. We’ll also share our takeaways from other conferences we attend.
Additionally, we will be actively reaching out to some of our favorite industry experts for guest posts. We know that they will each bring something unique to the table.
Question: How can I increase the quality of my content?
The short answer: Make sure each piece of content is tailored directly to your audience.
Content is of the highest quality when it is relevant and valuable to your readers. It should satisfy a want or need and provide insights that your audience would not be able to get anywhere else.
If you think of quality this way, what are the chances you’ll be publishing that short list of tools everyone already knows or that rant about a news topic that has no actionable assets?
iAcquire’s answer: We’ll start each piece of content with a specific target persona in mind. This will help us hone in on what qualifies as “high quality” content for our site and will push us to stick to a defined intent while we are writing.
Our plan leaves us with four major goals:
- Keep to a Consistent Schedule
- Increase Regularly Scheduled Content
- Increase Varied Content
- Increase Content Quality
We hope you’ll join us in working towards these as we head into quarter three of 2013.
What other solutions will you be implementing in your blog? Let us know in the comments.