A Definition Of Content Strategy
Content strategy is the planning, creation, delivery and maintenance of content, including words, images, and multimedia used by companies or organizations. In other words, the content strategy is a business’ high-level vision that guides future content development to deliver their objective. The important parts of content not only include its actual substance, but also its structure and interaction with the consumer. The goal of content strategy is to create content that is not only meaningful and cohesive with the brand, but engaging to the audience and sustainable over time.
Content Strategy Components
Components of content strategy can be split into two categories: content-oriented components and people-oriented components:
- Content-oriented Components
- Identify Substance Goals: What content is required to successfully execute your core strategy and mission? Brands should consider messaging architecture, target audience, voice, and tone.
- Determine Structure: How will you prioritize, organize, and access your content? Brands should consider mapping specific content to messages they are trying to convey, bridging content, and creating page tables to structure existing and planned content.
- People-oriented Components
- Outline Workflow and Roles: How will people create and maintain content on a daily basis? What roles need to be fulfilled and by who? What tasks need to be completed and by what roles throughout the entire content lifecycle? What tools will be needed by the employees?
- Identify Standards: What qualifies as quality content? What kind of pace does content need to be created and released? How will the organization continue to evolve the strategy?
The content lifecycle is crucial to creating content that is both meaningful and sustainable. While the phases of the content life cycle can overlap and the sequence is adaptable to each brand’s individual content strategy, there are several integral parts of developing content strategy in the long term for a company. In general, content life cycles include:
- Analysis: Analysis can include interviewing stakeholders in the content process, evaluation of the environments that will host the content, consider content of competition or trends.
- Development: Development includes determining workflow and process for content production, plans for sourcing content, defining the brand/voice, and topics.
- Plan: Planning includes recommending employees for roles, customizing the content management system, planning for data collection and communication.
- Create: Creating includes actually writing or finding the content, producing assets, governing the content workflow model and considering search engine optimization and quality insurance
- Maintain: Maintenance includes planning for auditing of existing and planned content, advising clients, and determining objectives for success.
“Content Strategy Basics,” Usability.gov, U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, n.d.
Smith, Hannah. “What is Content Strategy?” Distilled.net, Distilled, 12 June 2014.