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The act of creating content is only 25% of the process. In my most recent articles, I’ve been discussing the content iteration process, publishing content for everywhere and how to build your own online community.
Infrastructure = People, Process & Technology
Who are the people that are going to help you execute your vision, improve the process and connect with your target audience? No matter if you’re a one person team or a flourishing business. The concepts that I will discuss in this article can be applied through out any size organization that is interested in:
- Digital Transformation
- Increasing Sales
- Saving Time
- Building A Marketing Funnel
Once you have the process locked in, you can now focus on your supporting team. The purpose of building a content dream team is to help you bring the outside (what is your message?) together with the inside (how do you plan, create and distribute your content?).
I always say ‘Infrastructure is key‘, because once you’ve built the roads (channels), you have the product (information), now it’s time plan your next move.
Below I am going to touch on a number of concepts to help you build out your own personal content dream team. Everything from how you should structure your team (agile or waterfall), finding the right team, managing/governing people and leveraging new technology.
Why Should You Build A Content Dream Team?
Building a content dream team is not just about putting the right people together to accomplish a goal. It’s about — why — you are building a team around your content to achieve a certain outcome. If you want to connect the outside (what is your message?) to the inside (how do you plan, create and distribute your content?) you have to find the right talent and have a repeatable scheme in place that can be governed by the group as a whole.
Linguistics is a productive play on human nature, that is why I am labeling your team of content creators as a ‘Dream Team’. Because finding the right players does come with having a number of skill sets that can create value across the board.
For instance, the member of your content dream team who handles social media platforms, shouldn’t ‘just‘ have a specialty in ‘Facebook Advertising’. The content dream team should be able to communicate across multiple platforms and engage with users where they live and in the content format they choose to communicate.
As with any agile organization, speed kills and it pays to have people in place who can perform a number of tasks outside of their topic or specialty-area. It’s not necessarily getting the most bang for your buck. It’s more so tapping into the gig economy and utilizing people who have cultivated multiple skill sets. Upwork is a great place to connect with talent who may have what you’re looking for, and should be skilled at managing time and projects.
Content dream teams will also put you in a position to create better ideas, innovate your process and increase engagement. Finding the right fit for your open positions will be about trial error. Below I am going to go over a number of strategies you can use to make the best selections possible.
How Do You Find The Right People?
Upwork is definitely one route to take when finding talent. There’s literally a global community of freelancers at your disposal. This can be valuable if you’re thinking about expanding on a global level.
If you already have a business in place, I would suggest tapping into your local network. The powerful thing about the content business is that you are literally creating the future. So working with people on project is something we’ve all been mentally conditioned to do since grade school.
If you’re interested in building a dream team around your nimble operation or adding talent outside of your current content creation team. Always seek out people with great work ethics, who know how to listen and who execute a vision. Here are a few people to look for that will bring a diverse skill set to what you are creating:
- Customer Service Pros
- Lead Generators
The idea behind bringing a number of these people together outside of your content creation team is to help you attack content creation from different angles. You will also want to seek out the right personality types as well. Everyone’s role will be different and a number of roles will not fall onto one certain person. The overall goal is to have a great mix of personalities that can play off of each other.
Let’s go over a few of the personality types below:
- The Supporter — This is a person who should be your target audience’s biggest advocate when it comes to identifying what people want, how they want it and when they want it. Having a solid idea about emerging trends, Internet culture and is the king/queen of being timely.
- Mr./Ms./Mrs. Question Everything — This is a person that every content dream team needs when it comes to criticizing ideas, models, channel of choice, etc. Although, they can rub people the wrong way, individuals who question everything are typically better at catching the flaws in an idea. When utilized properly they can be extremely useful to the overall improvement of your team.
- The (Over) Optimist — This is a person who has a over-the-top solution-based focus to every challenge that comes your teams way. The (over) optimist can and will continuously uplift your team with good energy and always pushes through to achieve an objective. When it comes to creating content, confidence is key.
- The Gambler — This is a person who is more about throwing a Hail Mary and seeing what happens. They also take the ‘Flood The Market’ approach. The more content you produce the better your chances of success. This person is a valuable asset to have given they always are willing to push the pace.
- The Investigator — This person will always be knee deep in analytics, breaking down statistics and looking for new opportunities. This individual is a valuable asset because they can help you build for the long run, see the whole picture and show you proof that your strategy is working.
Aside from the process, technology and personality traits that should be present within your content dream team. Your organization should be agile as well. In the sense that, your team can operate at a certain level with out having to restart a project or scrap it altogether. Depending on the content your are developing, the waterfall or agile approach may work best. As the leader of your content dream team, you do have to be aware of which method works best for leveraging new technology.
How Do You Leverage Technology?
A major key to being a great communicator is knowing who you are — you can further determine who you are through branding — the next step is to figure out, how do you broadcast who you are to your fan base (the outside) in a strategic way?
This is where content strategy and content marketing contribute to the overall framework of your digital strategy efforts.
How do you exactly define Content Strategy?
Content strategy characterizes the preparation cycle for your digital plan of action. When I say content strategy, I specifically mean a preparation cycle for creating and managing digital content such as photos, audio and visuals on a continual basis.
Schemes Create Freedom & Increase Productivity
Content strategy is a scheme that your content dream team can use to plan, create, publish, analyze and govern content. Schemes create freedom; they also provide a level of unity when devising agreements and how to best implement these predetermined agreements.
- Effective, accessible content
- Repeatable schemes
What is effective, accessible content?
Content strategy has two functions:
- It aligns your content with your objectives as brand, business and organization.
- It benefits your target user in achieving their goals, answering questions or solving problems.
Do not present your target audience with an entirely different experience than the one they came to you to receive — this hinders the chief aim of your content by not increasing sales, investing time into a marketing funnel and completing a digital transformation.
If the “information” you want to focus on in your social media does not coordinate with your pre-determined objectives or aid your customers and followers in achieving their goals, then do not cultivate it into content for consumption.
The underlying rule is this, if it doesn’t support you in making money, attaining your desired goals or helping the dream team achieve any pre-established accomplishments, nine times out of ten, the “information” being presented will not aid your target audience and is most likely a misuse of valuable time.
What is a Repeatable Lifecycle?
A repeatable lifecycle is a routine that your content dream team should become accustomed to executing. It is like a recipe that a person has used to cook a thousand times over. The repeatable life cycle infers that each type of content that is produced within your content dream team can be reproduced by using the same methods each time.
This process creates a designated scheme, with everyone operating as one unit, each member of the content dream team has a clear understanding about ‘who‘ is doing ‘what‘ during the production process. The content strategy consist of 6 steps:
Following this recipe, an efficient content strategy eliminates all the speculation out of execution. Just imagine — if your content dream team didn’t have to anticipate all the steps required to create and publish a piece of content, they would be at liberty to create in the name of freedom.
Governance = execution+consistency and should always be at the heart of everything you do.
Talk About What Your Target Audience Wants To Hear
Another vital component of executing a content strategy is that it places the spotlight back on the fans and this can make the process notably rewarding.
By positioning your content within your objectives as a brand. You are helping your fan base with their goals, answering questions, solving problems and aiding them in reaching a new level. You are effectively placing the limelight back on your supporters. If you want to encourage your fan base to achieve certain tasks or goals, then you need to carefully examine how they live and what they need in their everyday life.
Focus On The Target Audience
The number #1 rule is to focus on the target audience. These relationships can assist you in meeting your objectives (building a community, increasing sales or successfully completing a digital transformation, etc).
When building a content dream team, it is essential that you’re aware of the kind of knowledge you need to present to achieve certain goals. Or else, you might compromise your brand loyalty by distributing off target content. As a content creator, you don’t want to risk losing prime positioning or being the focus of attention.
In conclusion, we now realize that content is knowledge arranged in a scheme that is easily accessible to your target audience. Content strategy is a preparation cycle for creating and managing digital content such as photos, audio, visuals, etc. The repeatable lifecycle infers that each type of content that is produced by the content dream team can be reproduced by using the same methods each time.
The overlaying scheme of content strategy has Governance built-in (execution+consistency) and should be always be at the heart of everything you do in order to produce fruitful content. Content creation is a lucrative business, anything that can be scaled up can create value for you now and in the future. So if you’re just starting out with a blog or you’re a thousand pieces into your journey.
Always look for the opportunity to create value.
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