Attention, control freaks: This article may make you squirm. What I'm about to tell you may sound a little crazy, but I promise it'll all start to make sense. In fact, by the end of this post, you'll probably be asking yourself why you've exhausted so much time and so many resources creating content when there's truly a better way to do it.
The controversial message of the day: If you want your content to work, then you need someone else to write it.
I know what you're thinking. Isn't that dishonest? Don't I have to do it all myself for it to count?
No. Not if it's done right. When it's done correctly, the result is high-quality content that uses your unique experiences and expertise to provide value to your audience.
At Influence & Co., each of our clients works with his or her own content marketing team, called a pod. These pods take the reins when it comes to developing strategy, brainstorming ideas, extracting knowledge, creating content, and working with our publication team to get that content published — which saves our clients hours of time on each piece of content they create and improves that content's effectiveness.
See what I mean? Working with a team that understands your goals and works with you to preserve your voice can help you create better content and save time doing it.
Over the years, we've refined our processes to get content creation down to a science. We've learned what works, what doesn't, and what's helpful for anyone creating content with an outsourced team to keep in mind.
A lot of people out there think that if you want something done right, you have to do it yourself. And while I absolutely love that saying (I immediately picture a sassy, no-nonsense grandma), it just isn't true.
For one thing, it doesn't take into consideration the fact that there are other people who might be better at something than you are. No one is an expert in everything — and that's OK. Why add more to your plate when it's not something within your area of expertise and you're already pretty busy leading your company as it is? Letting someone who is actually an expert in that area can give you more time for those things that only you can do.
Letting go of some control with your content will not automatically lead to chaos. In fact, when leaders take a step back from topics they're especially close to, they remove biases from their content and create space for their work to be even more engaging.
That's because when you're too close to your content, it's really hard to read it from the point of view of someone in your audience. Rather than speaking your company's shorthand and expecting readers to "get it," your content needs to speak to specific audiences. An outside team can help you translate.
A team can take the lead when it comes to developing content, polishing prose, and even backing up certain claims with research, but ultimately, it's your original insights and input that will help your team create content that sounds authentically you.
Taking a step back doesn't mean removing yourself completely from the content creation equation. Your team still needs your expertise, your stories, your voice, and your approval — which is why a solid content workflow and efficient processes are critical.
As long as your key insights are being captured and stored and you're able to review the content that uses those insights, there's really no right or wrong process for extracting knowledge.
Store and organize your thought leader's unique insights and create better content more efficiently with a .
The two methods that have worked best for our team and clients are interviews and written Q&As. However you like to communicate your ideas is fine; the goal is to share relevant personal experiences, specific examples, and original insights that can be used to fuel content creation.
At Influence & Co., our publication team has spent a lot of time and effort building relationships with over 1,500 online publications, which means we have a direct line to their editors and what it is they're looking for in the content they publish. Heck, we even published a report on it.
It's these kinds of insights that most business leaders and content creators just don't have. (And why would they?) These insights are shared with our production team and network of freelance writers with specialities across niches and industries. Every piece of content is created with these specific guidelines — and the knowledge directly from the thought leader — in mind, and then it's professionally edited by our team before it reaches the client for review.
A lot goes into producing high-quality content, which is why it sometimes makes sense to pass the reins to a team of experts you trust. Because a solid partnership is nothing without trust. If you can't find it in your heart to trust the team responsible for creating your content, then the whole initiative will fail.
Now, I know that not every business leader out there can so easily relinquish control when it comes to his or her own content. But I promise the world will not come to an end if you put your trust in a content creation partner to help you get the job done. In fact, when you take a more hands-off approach to your own content, you'll see tremendous benefits that can help you get the most out of your strategy.
I love meeting new people, and my drink of choice is champagne. I prefer to spend my days outside, riding my bike or catching up on my favorite blogs. I enjoy telling stories about my cats, even though no one is listening.