Once you’ve found that perfect content partnership, what the hell do you do with it!? Kidding. The best thing to do is open your coffers and wait for all the leads to pour in. The initial process after finding your content team always leads into that initial period of “Next Steps.” Meetings about topic ideation, the drafting process, how content will be delivered, and what the revision process looks like are all par for the course.
When 78% of consumers believe that companies creating custom content want to develop a lasting relationship with them, trust in your content team’s ability to build a long-term, effective strategy is going to be top of mind at the beginning, middle, and even at the end of a content partnership.
Here are the top tips and tricks for building, maintaining, and even ending a successful content partnership.
Establishing Clear Expectations
To ensure a successful partnership, it’s crucial to establish clear expectations about project timelines, communication channels, and key performance indicators (KPIs). Both you and your content marketing partner should be on the same page about what success looks like and how it will be measured.
If your partner is not delivering on a given objective, this isn’t always the best point to discontinue the relationship. How do they respond? Are there explanations or insights into why a certain strategy or campaign hasn’t performed? Look to see if they can pivot to a different strategy based on what they’ve learned. If that new campaign doesn’t work, then it’s probably time to consider looking for another partner.
Content Is Never Wasted
Even a failed campaign or content that doesn’t quite live up to your expectations isn’t a wasted effort. Any Content Marketing Company worth its salt is creating content that works on multiple levels: SEO, brand development, building a content library, and, depending on the project, developing Thought Leadership and industry authority on given topics.
A poorly written blog can still win on Keywords and SEO for a website’s domain rating. A Thought Leadership blog with no SEO can still provide ranking if it’s written well about industry topics (there are a lot of natural KWs in well-written content because of language specificity around subjects and how people search for content). Even if you have to end a relationship, you take the content with you that you can build on, rewrite, use for the basis of new directions, and many other things.
When it comes to building your company, 80% of people appreciate learning about you through blogs, social media, podcasts, and other personalized and unique content. Start building your media library now, and even if you have to stop or change companies, you’re always starting from a better position.
Don’t Be Afraid to Change the Package
If your campaign is successful, consider increasing your package for a more extensive content ecosystem. If you have a tight budget and are only seeing minor growth in your domain rating with two blogs a month for a year, request a change to a social media campaign from your company to boost interaction with your blog content database.
Pivot as needed to build a media library and try new angles in content marketing. You can leverage one type of content marketing with another, even if you can only afford one. Everything builds on itself as you build your custom content empire, whether you can afford a full upfront SEO audit, brand and persona development, a long-term keyword strategy, or a monthly package of a full content ecosystem.
Getting Started Is Half the Journey
Upwards of 75% of large companies choose to outsource their content marketing. Outsourcing your content marketing doesn’t mean you can completely wash your hands of the process. But it’s important also not to get lost in the minutia either. Not every content piece needs to be perfect–is every tree the best in the forest? Start planting and see how things develop, then you can start creating a garden of exponential growth.