4 Ways to Create Better Content Faster

Phil Arnold
Managing Director, UK
Colour Pencils

Whether you’re a marketing intern or a chief marketing officer, the chances are content is a major part of your role. To meet the personalisation and quality expectations of modern customers, marketers have found themselves needing to generate more content and serve more channels than ever before - but beyond creating faster - how?! Without a rethink, content creators risk content quality, and ultimately, damaging brand reputation.

In this article we’ll discuss what it takes to level-up your team’s content output, focusing on four key areas where we think you can save the most time and realise the biggest gains.

1. Bottomless Topics

Creating content is hard enough - without also needing to think of what to write about, how to structure it, formatting it appropriately, and more. By disambiguating these tasks, content managers can greatly simplify the job of writers, and address their business’ content needs more strategically.

To achieve this, our recommendation is to establish a rolling topics list, added to and reprioritized regularly, by means of a recurring stakeholder ideation session. In this way, participants have the opportunity to identify content gaps and opportunities arising from;

  • The needs of customer personas
  • Department specific needs
  • Customer journey stages
  • Newsworthy or time-sensitive matters
  • Marketing campaign spot requirements

This approach decouples the reliance on individuals who have a strategic view of content requirements from those who write it - allowing content managers to enlist a wider selection of subject-matter experts, engage specialists outside of the content team, or commission freelancers - all of whom can work on clearly defined pieces, with minimal supplementary guidance. Even for small, or one-person content teams, focusing on the job at hand can have a positive impact on output.

2. Content Frameworks

Creating content isn’t just about writing, designing, or generally producing the finished asset. As content managers know all-too-well, the process of specifying what needs to be done, gathering assets, accurately briefing contributors, and much more can itself be a massive drain on resources.

To minimise this challenge, particularly for content types you create on a regular basis, you can develop frameworks - essentially a toolkit to initiate, plan and execute each content asset. To get started with a framework, you’ll need to put your business analyst hat on and map the workflow from start to finish, identifying the tasks performed, the stakeholders involved, and the assets required, documenting each.

Image: A simplified example of blog post workflow

Frameworks aren’t designed to be a constraint for content creators, rather a tool to streamline repetitive processes. Individual pieces can deviate from a framework, and some bespoke or high-value pieces might not even use one at all, but generally they avoid the need for creators to reinvent the wheel when creating familiar assets.

3. Headless Content

With all the channels a modern marketer needs to serve, it’s important to think about content as decoupled from any one “senior” channel - such as your website. In reality, content might be served via desktop or mobile web (at various resolutions and with varying degrees of responsiveness), apps, syndicated 3rd party services, even audio - think smart speakers.

If you’re wondering how this agnostic approach helps you create content faster, the answer lies in eliminating the need for piece-by-piece design work and manual iterations - which are inevitably time consuming and resource intensive. When design work is required, it can be undertaken as a project in its own right, then applied to multiple content assets and reused for similar content types - maximising value.

Taking a minimally prescriptive approach to how content is rendered allows creators to focus on the content itself, rather than being distracted by how it will look/read/sound when displayed in different ways. 

Modern content management technology is increasingly engineered to support this way of thinking, which brings us neatly on to our final section; technology.

4. Technology

Technology moves fast, and businesses don’t always keep pace. When this happens, organizations typically absorb the gradual loss of productivity unnoticed, often necessitating that team members pick up the slack. This can have a real impact on content lead times and capacity.

To alleviate some of these issues - and create content faster - we recommend taking a close look at your tech stack. If your team is constrained by legacy content management systems, consumer-grade collaboration software, or your existing stack doesn’t offer the specialist functionality you need for modern business, investment can really pay dividends.

For today’s brands, retailers, and media organisations, content is a core part of the operation. With that in mind, the case for specialist, fit-for-purpose technology is obvious. Modern digital asset management platforms are specifically designed to meet the needs of content creators; from headless content management and delivery, to collaboration, automation and workflow facilitation, marketing resource management, and more - all integrated, and engineered to support the needs of content creators and managers.

In short, implementing the right technology can free your managers and content creators from a life of admin, ad-hoc processes, and system-wrangling, giving them time to create better content, and reducing time-to-market for content assets.

Ready to Create Better Content Faster?

To find out how censhare’s best-in-class technology helps leading organisations reduce complexity, streamline content operations, and deliver outstanding customer experiences, get in touch with us today.

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