The Stages of an Effective Content Workflow

When you're getting started with content creation, it's important to develop a standardized and thoughtful workflow to help you consistently create high-quality content. 

What is a content workflow?

A content marketing workflow contains everything involved in creating and deploying great content. Most content marketers prefer the term "workflow" over "process" because it's more holistic and team-centric.

The impacts of a good content workflow

A good workflow takes the chaos and guesswork out of content creation. It allows your team to align around an agreed-upon process that consistently produces high-quality content that drives awareness, leads, and conversion. 

The Stages of an Effective SEO Content Workflow: 

  • Keyword and Topic Research
    • This is a critical, and often misunderstood step of the process. Many content teams sit around a round table and spitball ideas about what to write about. This is not research. Instead of guessing what your audience wants to read about, it's important to perform research around the keywords and topics that your audience is searching for online. This provides critical insight into your users' intent. Even better, you should perform question research–in other words, you should research the questions your audience is asking. Once you know what your audience is asking, you can create content that's designed to answer those questions, which, in turn, will attract that audience to your site. Frase can help get you started with researching keywords and questions–click here to get started. 
  • Editorial Planning
    • Once your team has set goals around the keywords, topics, and questions you want to rank for, you'll want to run an audit that can provide an understanding around what's currently performing well and what needs a little TLC. It's important to approach content from a "never finished" perspective. Even excellent content and that attracts tons of traffic should be regularly reviewed, improved, and evaluated. Returning to content periodically to assess its performance should be a crucial element of your content workflow. One important element in the planning process is identifying topic gaps in your content. Topic gaps are gaps between a searcher's intent and the content your site is serving up. Use Frase's Google Search tool to help identify topic gaps on your site–click here to get started. 
  • Content Brief Creation
    • Despite being a critical element of a healthy content workflow, content briefs are an underutilized weapon in the arsenals of today's content marketing teams. Once your team agrees on the content scope, keywords, and questions that you want included in your new piece of content, it's critical that you format those requirements in a format that is easy for a writer to navigate. A well-made content brief helps SEO's and writers get on the same page when it comes to the scope and objective of the piece of content. This helps reduce tedious editing cycles and full re-writes later down the line. Creating a high quality brief take mere minutes with Frase's NLP--get started here. 
  • Content Creation
    • Now for the fun part. Once your content brief is complete, it's time to figure out how to turn that outline into a full-length draft. Frase's SEO writing assistant helps you write topically relevant content  by combining a search engine and a word processor into a single window. With this tool, you have an ocean of research at your fingertips, including full overviews of the SERP as well as the topics, questions, statistics, headers, etc. that your competition is mentioning in their content. 
  • Editing for Tone, Brand, and Grammar
    • Now that you have a draft, it's time to make sure that it lives up to your organization's editorial preferences and standards. There's no shortcut to this step. Doing this well will require experienced writers who are familiar with your organizations tone, voice, and are, well, good writers. 
  • Design/UX
    • Once your content has been approved, it's time to put it on the site. Work closely with in-house designers or website administrators to design the visual appearance of your content in a way that will assist in achieving the goal. For example, is the goal of the content to drive a signup? If so, you'll want to make sure you have a clear call-to-action (CTA) somewhere on the page.
  • Publish and Promote
    • Even the best content in the world is useless if nobody sees it. Targeting your audience should be a step that's included into the fundamental structure of your workflow, no matter what. If there's one thing that drives writers and SEO's crazy, it's spending tons of time creating content that nobody reads. Your distribution and promotion strategies will differ depending on your company's industry, stage, and budget, but there are still options available to every organization, such as sending your new content to your company's email distribution list or sharing via social media accounts.