As content marketing becomes less of an industry trend and more of an industry standard, the phrase “feed the content marketing beast” is becoming increasingly common. The idea is that if you want to succeed at content marketing, you need to make sure that you are constantly producing content. The problem with this phrase is that it makes the assumption that you already have a content marketing beast. Many organizations, particularly new organizations, do not even have the mechanisms in place to produce content. What do you do if you want to feed a beast, but you don’t have a beast to feed?
You build your own beast. Here are five steps to get your organization started:
Hire a beast master or beast masters.
If you have it in your budget, you should hire someone whose job is to handle your content full time. Ideally, your content marketing efforts should be set up like a traditional magazine or newspaper publisher with a team of writers, and an editor or two. If you are a small organization, it’s possible that you may only be able to afford one content marketer, and it will be their job to serve as both editor and writer in many cases.
Figure out what kind of beast you want.
Different industries require different kinds of content. Take a look around your industry and figure out what will work best for you. Ideally, if you have hired a professional beast master (content marketing manager), they should be able to help you identify what kind of beast you need.
Train someone in every department in the proper care and handling of a beast.
Even if you have a dedicated person or persons handling your content marketing beast, it is helpful to get as many people in your company as possible involved in your beast training efforts. Take the time to train everyone in your organization in general content marketing principles, and whenever possible, get them to help out. Get design to make infographics, get management to do interviews, get your accounts team to write articles about your business; it truly takes a village to raise a content marketing beast.
Acquire someone else’s beast, or their beastlings.
It’s possible that at least for the time being, you do not have the resources available to raise your own beast. If this is the case, you may want to acquire someone else’s beast. That is, find a service, or agency that specializes in content, and pay them to do your content marketing for you.
Set up a feeding schedule.
Once you have a good beast master, a good beast, buy in from your company, or at least an agency handling these things for you, set up an editorial calendar to make sure that everyone is aware of their responsibilities and deadlines.
Figure out where your beast likes to play.
Now that you have a beast of your very own and she’s happy and healthy, it’s time to send her out into the world. Determine which distribution channels are best for your industry, and get your beast out there! Especially in the beginning, you may want to consider paying for ads and sponsored content to get the world familiar with your content marketing beast.