how we work
Great content doesn’t just happen!
That’s why we employ a five step process to make every project a success.
Step 1. Talk: Like all professional service engagements, it starts with an initial consultation to go over your project and goals, offer our insights and define the project boundaries.
Step 2. Propose: Once the scope is defined, we will draft a detailed proposal outlining the project including deadlines, everyone’s responsibilities, project timelines, deliverables, and costs. If you have a SOW already, we’ll skip this step.
Step 3. Outline: Once the proposal is approved, we will begin work on an outline if it is needed.
Step 4. Create: Once the outline is approved, we get to work. We manage the content creation process including SME interviews, writing and first-pass editing as well as assigning and managing extra writers if needed.
Step 5. Submit and review: After the initial editing is done, we will submit the completed work and wait for feedback.
Throughout the engagement, we will maintain frequent contact so issues are resolved quickly and the client never has to wonder how the work is progressing.
it pays to prepare
To make the most of everyone’s time and energy, clients should, as best they can, come prepared to answer the following questions:
Who is the intended audience (including personas if available) and, most importantly, what do they care about? For example, “CIOs at mid-sized P&C insurance companies serving the upper mid-west who are struggling to find the value from big data and analytics” is a description we can work with.
How and where will the content be used? For example, as anchor content for a landing page, for a blog, as a handout at a trade show, a press release, to build a micro-site around or, as often is the case, all of the above.
What is the purpose of the content? For example, to inform and position (a.k.a., thought leadership), to increase sales, to nurture existing client relationships, to increase newsletter subscribers, etc.
Will it be re-purposed? For example, will the white paper or ebook be broken up into feature article and blog content?
Is there a content marketing strategy and, if so, what are its goals? For example, raising brand awareness, growing your email lists, educating prospects, positioning the company as a thought leader, etc.
How many pages and/or word count do you want the final deliverable to be? For example, there are widely accepted word-count best practices for blogs and white papers but, really, it’s up to you how long or short you want your content to be.
Some thoughts as to voice and tone. For example, do you want it to be very button-downed, “just-the-facts” or more upbeat and conversational?
Is there a house or brand style sheet to be followed? and, finally ….
Do you have examples of similar work you like and would like to use as guides for the final product?
More questions will come up during our call but this is a good start. To save time and effort, it is also very helpful to get these answers in writing before the call so we are all, literally, working off the same page.