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Build a Successful Editorial Plan: Essential Skills Your Team Needs. Content Calendars for Your eCommerce Blog: 5 Content Management ToolsSocial Commerce and Marketing guide by If you’re into content marketing for your eCommerce store (which you should be), then you should probably also be into content management tools. Blogging for eCommerce can be difficult — it’s hard to keep track of your blog while you have so many other tasks on your mind. Why not make things a little easier for yourself? Content calendar tools can be extremely helpful for organizing, scheduling, and automating content, while also enabling simpler collaboration with your colleagues. In order to make your content marketing just a bit simpler, we’re going to take a look at a five content management tools that you can start using for your eCommerce blog! What Do You Need to Think About When Planning Content? Before we start talking about the different types of content management tools, let’s start by explaining what you should be adding into your content calendar.

There are a few things that every blog post will need: TitlePublishing dateSEO – keywordsAuthor Google Tools Price: Free CoSchedule P.S. How to improve your About page without doing a redesign – GatherContent Blog. Does your About page stand out and engage your audience? Does it tell your story in the most effective way? In this post I’m going to share some tips for making the most of your About page without having to redesign it. The following six steps will ensure your About page is authentic, focused on quality and can help you stand out from the competition. We are notoriously fond of bragging and talking about ourselves. Fair enough. Take this current example from Waitrose: A more customer-focused way of saying the same thing would be: Eating well should be enjoyable.

Shell explains on their website that they’re one of the world’s leading energy companies. You get the picture. EVERYONE is “leading” at something. But, let’s face it, what does “leading” even mean? This one should be simple: Avoid gibberish. Unfortunately, many companies use words such as “competitive”, “smart solutions”, “future-proof”, “innovative” – without defining what those words actually mean. A four step road map for good content governance – GatherContent Blog. Governance is the vital ingredient to getting any content strategy, which is at least in part about people, off the ground. Creating the right processes, resources, and interactions between people in order to govern content effectively is difficult.

But getting started needn’t be complicated. Read on for an overview of the key steps every organisation needs to take to get a grip on its approach to content. Content: a difficult word The word “content” is an example of an abstract word used to describe many complex things. Similar in fashion to other broad category words such as “science”, “food” or “sports”, when we lift the lid on “content”, we realise that there are many possible types of intended meaning lurking beneath the abstract label. Example: when someone says they’re “into sports”, our instinctive response is often going to be something like, “Oh yeah, which sports?”. The same is true of content. What do we talk about when we talk about content? The same is true of content. Content Strategy on every budget – GatherContent blog. In 2011 I talked about Content Strategy on a Shoestring Budget at the IA Summit, when content strategy was first gaining traction. It was only two years after Kristina Halvorson’s Content Strategy for the Web was published.

I was working for a small web development company and had made content strategy part of our process. Many people wanted to fit content strategy into their projects but were constantly bumping up against budget and time constraints. The idea of doing content strategy on a small (or non-existent) budget seemed to be what people needed to get themselves started. Now we are near the end of 2015 and there are far too many people still saying that they can’t get content strategy accepted in their organization or as part of their agency’s development process.

You do not need permission to do content strategy. Pieces of content strategy Doing content strategy should not to be confused with having a content strategy. Scaling Content Strategy Content inventory Content audit. The Sense of Structure: Writing from the Reader's Perspective (9780205296323): George Gopen: Books.

How to get a smile out of your transactional emails. Marketing / Communication skills You know those system emails that get sent out when someone buys from you or subscribes to your blog? Chances are they represent opportunities you’re not taking advantage of. Transactional emails are the emails that automatically get sent out by businesses to their customers and/or subscribers. You will have encountered them yourself: everything from receipts and confirmations to password resets and renewals. They are necessary and functional, and also present an incredibly important opportunity to communicate better with your customers, drive action and enhance your brand.

In order to illustrate my point, first let me give you some examples of a business NOT making the most out of these (typically) system generated emails. I subscribed to the mailing list of a business I’d heard about recently and received these two emails: and then…. Your application to join our website has been approved. Wow. Hi, thanks for subscribing to our database. That’s it! Comments. Why content strategy is everyone’s business. Most people don’t come to a website and go — “wow look at this design”, or “wow like at this information architecture”, or “wow look at this UX!”

Users come to a site for the content. They come for information. Content strategy. Content marketing. Structure based content strategy. These terms and roles have been around for a while, but what do they actually mean? A content strategist should certainly be able to write well. Planningstrategic thinkingstrong grasp of writingattention to detailimpeccable grammarmarketing expertiseknowledge of audienceleadership and production skillsdeep understanding of voice, tone and style.

I’m sure the list goes on. Kristina Halvorson coined the first definition of web content strategy as we know it today back in 2008. Planning for the creation, delivery, and governance of useful, usable content. This brings together some of the key elements that make up content strategy. These things all form part of the content strategy. The War Room. Stop underestimating content production for web projects — Lagom Strategy.

Tip: you may not yet be sure exactly what content your new site will have and therefore what you're designing a process around. I say: still better to go with what you know, rather than miss this step or wait until it is too late in the project. BTW: Don't ignore or underestimate the effort to 'migrate' existing content from an old site to a new site. That content probably needs to be reviewed, updated, and uploaded again. STEP 3. Annotate each stage in your process with the person and / or role responsible for it. Note any stages that don’t have a clear owner. Tip: Colour-coded stickmen stand out really well. STEP 4. Ask these questions: are there lots of people with a say in the content?

STEP 5. Be realistic! Tip: I prefer clients to estimate the actual man hours of work required to complete the step rather than the span of time it takes for the stage to be completed. STEP 6. Looking pretty big (for a single piece of content)? STEP 7. The answer to your sum will be a sobering number. Calculating the production of high-quality content - GatherContent: A blog about content strategy and development. I spend quite a bit of my working life helping clients through content production challenge on web projects. And sometimes that strays into project management/resource planning territory. And why not? Content production is a massive deal on web projects so it deserves time under the project manager’s spotlight. For a while I’ve had my own little spreadsheet with some variables and formulas that helps me to work out the scale of their content challenge and out of that I can make smarter recommendations around timescales, resource gaps, expectation setting, and approach, e.g. phased content rollouts.

Each client, and each project is different (an obvious point, I know), but it usually boils down to filling the answers to these questions: when do they need to go live / finish the content? Stepping into a content production phase without these answers is a client’s one-way ticket to Delayed-Rollout-Ville. A Bit of theory with a diagram I’ve lifted this definition from its Wikipedia entry:

13 content questions to kick-off your website redesign project - GatherContent: A blog about content strategy and development. If you’re working on a website redesign, you need to put content front of mind (where it belongs). Asking a few content focused questions at the start of your project can make the reality of your content challenge known. This process will allow you to identify content risks nice and early.

When working through the questions, it’s ok not to have exact answers at this early stage. Rather, it will help you gauge the project team’s awareness, emphasis, and appreciation of the content strategy elements that will make or break a website project and the longer term success of the site. Q1. YES: Good start. NO: Alarm bells. Q2. YES: Excellent. NO: You may be thinking: “We don’t like our old content, we’ll just start again.” At this point you may be able to convince the project team to include a content audit activity into the project. Q3. YES: Great. NO: Warning.

Q4. YES: Good. NO: Big risk. Q5. YES: Good. NO: Alarm bells. Q6. YES: Good. Q7. YES: Great, and well done. NO: Yikes! Q8. YES: Good. Content Modelling: A Master Skill. In “Tinker, Tailor, Content Strategist,” which runs concurrently in this issue, I asked you about content strategy master skills, which hardly seems fair if I don’t share one of my own favorites. More and more I find that the content model is one of the most important content strategy tools at my disposal. It allows me to represent content in a way that translates the intention, stakeholder needs, and functional requirements from the user experience design into something that can be built by developers implementing a CMS.

The content model helps me make sure that the content vision becomes a reality. What is a content model? #section1 Article Continues Below A content model documents all the different types of content you will have for a given project. A simple, high-level content model The high-level model shown here depicts some common content types of a music website and how they’d relate to each other. Why is a content model important? How do you create a content model? Content Modeling Phases · An A List Apart Blog Post. Article Continues Below Most of my projects involve building content models, and I have a deep and abiding love for the process. I like teasing out the patterns and relationships in a big mess of content, then creating a structure that marries development, design, and business needs.

I find it very satisfying, like putting together perfect rows in Tetris. I’ve worked on plenty of projects that have issues that warrant the creation of a content model: a client wants more efficient governance workflows, or to reuse pieces of content across channels, or they’re building a responsive site and need a cleaner separation of content and display code. A content model is an organizational tool. My projects run more smoothly when my stakeholders understand the bigger picture of what’s involved in converting to a new content model, and I’ve started to talk about content modeling as having four phases: 1. This is what most of us picture when we think of content modeling. 2. 3. 4. 5. I lied. Why and how you should conduct a content storytelling audit - GatherContent: A blog about content strategy and development.

Storytelling is more than just another marketing buzzword. A good story, told well, brings order and clarity to the chaos of our world. Stories can summon forth meaning where there was once confusion; communicate complex concepts in relatable terms; and elevate a solid argument on a well-worn subject into a compelling, inspirational address. Facts get forgotten, stories get repeated.

In this sense, every content strategist, regardless of the industry they work in and the nature of content they’re working with, is a story strategist. We’re hardwired to understand ourselves and others through stories A story, once broken down, is a series of cause and effect events. We’re all constantly weaving our own little narratives all day long.

In her book How to Stay Sane, Psychotherapist and writer Philipa Perry explains: We are primed to use stories. Key takeaways: Stories are scientifically proven to engage emotionally and create empathy Maya Angelou once said: What’s at play, here? Alyce Currier on Content Strategy for Video and Content Marketing - GatherContent: A blog about content strategy and development. Alyce Currier is a content strategist at Wistia, part of the Earmilk team, and one of the more prolific voices in industry talking about video content in relation to content strategy and its cousin, content marketing. As content strategist at Wistia, Alyce has filled the Wistia blog with smart content advice for getting started with video. We got the chance to sit down with Alyce and discuss content strategy for video, college projects, and the rise of brand journalism.

To start with, can you tell me a little about you and some of the notable things you’re working on right now? Right now, the most interesting thing going on for me at Wistia has been some changes in the way our marketing team is structured. We’re trying out designated “squads” around “core audience”, “new audience”, and a few other areas within marketing. As content strategist, I’m focusing on growing and nurturing our “core audience”. It sounds like a cool journey. Definitely! Advice time. A Guide to Getting Started with Agile in your Content Marketing Efforts.

You are here: Home / Blog / B2B Marketing / A Guide to Getting Started with Agile in your Content Marketing Efforts Posted by Shelly Kramer on August 18, 2014 · 6 Comments Marketers everywhere are struggling to get their arms around the beast that is content marketing. How to do it in general, how to do it well, and how to get it done on time without going crazy (and often with few resources) are questions that most of us wrestle with.

That’s precisely why thinking about your content planning with an agile approach might just save your sanity. I love agile and when I saw that Jeff Julian was speaking on agile and content planning at an upcoming Kansas City Direct Marketing Association event, it was on my don’t miss list. Jeff’s presentation was awesome and I’m going to recap some of what he shared. The Jeff Julian Backstory. Julian sold a couple of years ago. How to Use Agile in Your Content Planning Why Content Marketing? The Challenges? The History of Lean and Agile. A Guide to Getting Started with Agile in your Content Marketing Efforts.