Should You Care About Content Strategy?

10/08/13 Kristin

I’m a big fan of putting words before pixels, but I’m aware that only gets you as far as launch. What do you do after the big red button has been pushed, and the whole world knows about your website?

Keep adding content. How? By developing a content strategy. This is totally a 30,000 foot view of what content strategy really looks like, but there are others who do a much better job of getting down to the gory details. In a nutshell, figure out a plan that answers these questions: How will you let people know you exist? Will you blog? Will you tweet? What will you say? Can you pull this off using one voice? Have one underlying message?

Having a content strategy is good for many reasons. Readers like to know an actual human is involved with the site. They want to know the thing is maintained, and not just stuck online and forgotten about. Google actually feels the same way; as many times as that search results algorithm changes, fresh content has always ranked high in “must-dos.”

I wrote a post a couple years ago called A Million Little Finish Lines, and now I realize it’s relevant to more than just app development. I’ll spare you the philosophical rant about how it’s applicable to every aspect of life, but I will say this: preparing and implementing your content strategy can get really overwhelming. Setting little goals for yourself helps keep your motivation up, and your sense of accomplishment high.

How you implement a content strategy is up to you (and all the actual experts out there). But there is one piece of advice I’ll toss up. Make your goals realistic and don’t be afraid to adjust them. It’s incredibly easy to miss a deadline (even if it’s self-imposed) and continue slipping after that. If your goal is to post new content twice a week, work for it. But if you find that goal harder to reach than you thought, bring it down to once a week. You won’t feel the stress of having to publish something, or the resentment of posting something good that could have been great with a little extra finesse.