Content creation is quite a difficult task. It not only about writing a great blog, create a slideshow or a video, but it is also much more than that. The planning, research, and collaboration is also an important aspect of content creation. Organizing content is the key to have successful content because having ideas scattered all around is not going to be helpful. So how it is possible to stay organized with content ideas and flows?
Some of you might be wondering why there is a need to organize content ideas?
The answer is that content marketers are exposed to tons of content and they also get many ideas out of it. So ideally it is important to note down the idea or topic when it comes to your mind. The following must be immediately noted down:
– The working headline or topic
– The objective of content
– A brief synopsis or outline of content’s structure such as blog post’s headings and subheadings
– The content’s next step or call-to-action
Why organize blog content?
Apart from being able to handle the outpour of ideas, there are few reasons due to which it is important to get more organized with content ideas:
Using an organization tool that not only helps to organize but also allows collaboration with other people on your content marketing team.
The documentation makes it easier to map out your calendar.
It ensures one does not forget or misremember the information.
A content organization system is required to get content ideas more organized and then deciding on a process to start implementing and organizing.
Determining the best organization system for you
Since the life of marketers is very complicated there is no single solution for every content marketing team.
The decision of which tool or type of tool needs to be used depends a lot on personal preferences, as well as how the team works through the content creation process.
A few questions might prove to be helpful with your decision when choosing a tool.
How many people should be allowed to access and contribute to the idealist?
Since there is a big difference in the tools suited for one personal process and a tool made for big teams. It might be required to assign posts to certain team members or give different coworkers different permission levels. The tool needs to be analyzed whether it can support such a set-up.
How often will the ideas be included in the backlog?
This again is a different process for different people. Some people like to add to their “idea logs” daily, while others prefer holding big brainstorming sessions once a month.
The number of times one uses an organization tool is a big part of the way the tool is being used overall, so think about when you will be logging in?
How much detail do you want to get down?
If you just want to write down a blog post or email headline, a simple spreadsheet might be the best option. But if you want to write down the headline, target persona, related campaigns, author, and an initial outline, it might not prove to be very useful.
The more information needs to be added, the more structure and specialization in content marketing is required from the app.
Don’t just regurgitate facts that others have already posted, try to introduce a new fresh look on the subject matter. Remember, you need to create content ‘of substance.’
What other tools does your team use?
This can be a bit tough if a tool for one of your existing systems meets your needs for a new one, it is advisable to use it for that too. There is no need for teams to learn how to use and remember to check one more app when something they are already using works just as well?
Let us look at some tips which will help you to organize content ideas.
1. Using programs such as DropBox
Programs like DropBox give you the liberty to access content regardless of your location. The content can be easily organized in folders in the cloud-based system allowing you to easily market it from anywhere in the world. It is also useful because computers are prone to errors and crashing without any reason. Even if that happens the ideas are saved not only on your computer but also on the external hard drive as well as Dropbox.
2. Utilizing list apps and programs
The best way to stay organized while creating content and brainstorming ideas is to keep the ideas on a list. This can be easily done by using programs such as Reminder apps on smartphones, or task manager apps such as BubblesPlanner which helps to create multiple lists for multiple things.
3. Planning schedules for weeks ahead
Scheduling content ideas for a week or two can be extremely useful because it will help you to focus on other aspects of the business as well rather than just content creation. This will also prove to be beneficial for delegating time to different tasks and know when to start or finish a certain task. It will help to stay productive and finish tasks on timekeeping one away from deadlines and stress.
The most popular and heavily used app by bloggers (freelancers) as well as professional marketers and publishing houses is CoSchedule .
4. Editorial calendar to keep topics organized
When content is involved in the equation, one needs a solid plan on board to be prepared for months ahead. Editorial calendars are a great way of keeping content organized and plan effective campaigns.
5. Content inventory
Content inventory helps in keeping track of content that has been done as well as areas that have not been covered. It is a great way to keep track of the web page on the website from about section to contact page or anything else which is required to be managed. All that needs to be done is maintaining an Excel sheet or Google Doc and catalog each page with its name, link and a small sentence of why this is needed.
This will not only figure out new pages required but also how organizing a web page is being done. It will also highlight any unnecessary landing pages.
6. Paper and pencil
Using technology might be the best approach to organize content ideas but the good old paper and pencil approach is just timeless. With a planner and writing down content schedule or what is needed to be done in the future. Brainstorming with paper and pencil to keep a note of different topics is still required because sometimes it turns out to be an effective method than others.
7. Use a sitemap to keep your flow organized
Sitemaps are very helpful when it comes to staying organized. It can show exact pages that need to be changed and improved to make them more impactful. This can be done on its own or with the help of a program. The diagram format will make it easier to see what needs to be done and making the necessary changes. The sitemap will also establish a relationship between the pages. Although it might be difficult for some to decipher it should be tried once to see the benefits.
You need to keep an eye on your sitemap stats in Google Search Console. It can show you crawl errors and the pages excluded from search coverage.
Note: XML sitemap does not improve your search rankings. However, it improve your website’s visibility for the search engines: it does help search engines find content and adjust crawl rate.
8. Post tracker to stay organized
The post tracker is the most useful way to organize content ideas since it tracks posts. It is a great way to access previous blog posts easily. This also helps to see popular posts, help to tweak blogging strategy to follow the most successful posts. However, a post tracker not only focuses on past content but also helps to plan future posts through topics and blogging schedule to attain more benefits from the content.
9. A specific place for brainstorming ideas
This can be interpreted in two ways. Firstly, it is important to have a specific digital place to write and collect ideas that were being brainstormed. Secondly, it can also be a physical place where one can be relaxed to conceive some outstanding ideas.
10. Use programs to track buyer personas
There are a variety of programs available to create and monitor buyer personas to help organize content to get the most out of it. For instance, programs like Trello can be used to establish buyer personas. Such programs allow the users to create a board on each persona, tracking any changes needed. A buyer persona is important to get the best results from content and make revenue.
In fact, it is one of the best ways to research the audience outside without actually asking too many questions. It will also help to create useful and appealing content according to the buyer’s preference.
11. Revisit the content
It is really important to ensure that the content is being constantly scrutinized and revisited for any changes required to improve it. One should schedule sometime around every month to revisit content to ensure if all intended content goals are being met. Otherwise, the strategy needs to be revisited. More research should be done and necessary changes should be made. The most popular blogs should be tracked along with the not so popular ones to see what changes are needed.
12. Use Excel to track keywords which work and those which do not
Microsoft Excel is one of the greatest tools when it comes to tracking keywords, keeping a track of how successful they are. It can reveal which keywords are worth paying for and the ones which are ranking well organically. The keywords can be constantly followed on Google Analytics to assess the effectiveness of those keywords. They can also be added to the Excel sheet to revisit monthly. These changes can greatly improve the overall impact of the content.
The best way to stay organized is to regularly post social media content or blog. Nowadays it is possible to schedule out social media posts to ensure not to miss them. It can even be scheduled for an entire month as well. The same is the case for blog posts. Writing and scheduling them can be the best way to keep updated with content.
14. Set up a Pinterest Board for ideas
Tools like Pinterest are a great way to track ideas. This can be used to track content ideas and save things that might be useful for content and business. It is the be the place to gather ideas and learn something new to improve content flow.
15. Delegate tasks to trusted people
To stay organized and produce quality content it is important to delegate tasks. This not only helps to find other people for content creation but also aids in creating quality content. It can be done in the form of brainstorming ideas, creating editorial content or writing up the post. Moreover, there are various copywriting agencies also available to help.
Now that we are familiar with the ways to organize content ideas, there are a few aspects that should be taken care of before one actually starts implementing them. Firstly, it is important to understand the tools because there is no all in one tool which will address all the concerns. So, it is better to get hang of these tools before using them.
Secondly, using tools as they were intended. The tools also have limitations and when one starts using them against its purpose or expects too much from it things can get out of hands. These tools should be used for their intended purposes only rather than for what it was not made. One can simply not use a spreadsheet when they need a database.
Thirdly to restrict the number of tools to be used. Do not start signing up for all new applications which are launched for content creation. Trying every application and moving all the data over there can be very risky actually.
Further, choose well-made tools. Choosing a tool can be a very critical aspect of organizing content ideas. Using tools with unnecessary features can make you lose focus and the initial job for which the tools were intended to be used for.
Lastly, control yourself. It is very possible that one tends to expect to use one app for various purposes. However, this is not possible neither this should be the practice.