Content Management Best Practices For 2021 and Beyond

Meryam Lehoufa
Meryam Lehoufa   -   June 11th, 2021
Notebook with best practices heading

According to Wikipedia, the term “content” refers to the information and experiences that are directed toward an end-user or audience. In the digital world, content exists in the form of digital data. This encompasses everything we see and consume almost every day on the internet like blog posts, images, videos, etc.

Bill Gates’s famous essay that he wrote in 1996 was titled “Content is king”, and it’s really astonishing how that statement is still 100% valid in 2021 and beyond. With 60% of marketers saying that content marketing is very important or extremely important to their overall strategy, It is obvious that content marketing drives great results for businesses of all sizes. Let’s back that up with some statistics:

Content marketing not only generates traffic, conversions, and leads, but also fuels other marketing efforts and creates long-term, sustainable results. 

But before you can market your content, you need to first effectively structure and manage it. That’s why we’ll cover some of content management best practices in this blog post. These best practices will enable you to effectively manage your content and make the most of your content marketing efforts.

Before we dive into that, let’s first define what content management is.

Content management can be defined as a set of processes and technologies that support the systematic collection, logical organization, retention and storage, protection, accessibility, and delivery of content through different mediums.

Content management aims at managing unstructured content and also keeping track of that content throughout its entire lifecycle. It is a critical aspect that ensures that a business or organization’s online content remains updated and in compliance with the current industry practices. And this is key to organizational survival.

The benefits of effective content management and consequences of poor content management

For content management to serve its purpose, it must be done the right way. In fact, when done effectively, content management can do marvels to your business. Key benefits of effective content management include but are not limited to:

  • Increased authority and improved website ranking thanks to updated content 
  • Extended reach of content
  • Improved and faster customer service
  • Better opportunities for personalization
  • Standardization and lower web publishing costs
  • Easier content repurposing and reusability for multiple media
  • Improved content security thanks to regular archiving of web pages
  • Increased customer trust, engagement, and eventually conversions
  • Maintained quality consistency
  • Enriched collaboration and information sharing
  • Improved employee productivity and internal workflows

On the other hand, there are significant losses that accompany poor content management. According to an AIIM report, poor content management practices yield a number of productivity-draining results, such as:

  • Taking too long to find content (62%)
  • Duplicated efforts (52%)
  • Too many round-robin emails (49%)
  • Insufficient re-use (46%)
  • Unnecessary printing (40%)

Poor content management doesn’t just reduce employee productivity, but it can also harm the overall business image and result in loss of traffic and a significant reduction in sales and conversions. Furthermore, let’s not forget how costly poor content management is; according to IDC data, the inability to locate and retrieve documents costs organizations with over 1,000 employees approximately $2.5 million per year. In addition, these organizations spend another $5 million per year paying employees to duplicate that mismanaged content.

Content management best practices

Now that we’ve defined what content management is and why it should be done effectively, let’s take a look at some of the content management best practices that have a direct and significant effect on the success of any content management strategy:

Setting a clear goal for the content to be created

First things first, an effective content management strategy should start by setting a clear goal for that content and, most importantly, making sure that that goal is aligned with your organization’s goals and pain points. Content can have many goals like brand awareness, customer engagement, talent recruitment, attracting strategic partners, lead generation, etc.

Identifying and understanding the target audience

Clearly identifying and understanding the target audience in and out is another crucial part of a successful content management strategy. This can be achieved by doing thorough research in order to answer questions like:

  • What are the specific needs and pain points that your ideal customers have?
  • What are their interests and expectations?
  • How do they spend time online?
  • What channels will allow you to reach them?
  • What trends are they currently following?
  • What questions do they search when they’re looking for the product or service that you’re offering?
  • What type of content do they prefer the most/to consume? etc.

Once the above questions are answered, the next step is to create “buyer personas” and produce valuable, relevant content that’s aligned with each stage of the buyer’s journey. 

For example; B2B content often needs to be more informative than entertaining. The right type of content, in this case, would be white papers, case studies, Infographics, and online presentations. The best channels to reach that audience would be business-focused social media sites like LinkedIn, industry-specific publications, etc.

Using an editorial content calendar

Content management best practices also include using an editorial content calendar to schedule the time and number of content that needs to be created. An editorial content calendar is a visual workflow that helps content managers outline goals and schedule their work on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis. Editorial content calendars are extremely essential as they allow content managers to track content types to be produced, authors, publish dates, and promotional channels. This not only ensures consistency but also helps to spot gaps and to keep things organized. In addition, it enables content managers to communicate their content strategy to other internal stakeholders.

Measuring results

Merely creating and publishing content is not enough. A content strategy needs to be measurable, this helps to determine whether or not the previously set goals were achieved. Following up and measuring results is thus a crucial part of a successful content management strategy and is key to demonstrating content’s value.

Measuring success and content performance can be done with the help of analytical tools. Depending on the defined content management KPI’s, content managers can gauge the performance of the published content by tracking metrics like:

  • Traffic
  • Backlinks
  • SERP rankings
  • Bounce rate
  • Click-through rate
  • Engagement
  • Time on page
  • Return rate
  • Sales leads, etc.
Using a modern, future-proof CMS

This is one of, if not the most important content management practice nowadays. In fact, using a modern, future-proof CMS over a legacy CMS is now a must for businesses to provide the best user experience to their customers and, at the same time, keep both their content managers and developers happy and productive. By modern we mean either headless or hybrid CMS. 

According to the 2018 CMI survey, 51% of organizations said they don’t feel their organization has the right technology in place to manage content. The CMS you're using must fuel your content management efforts and allow you to leverage your valuable content to reach consumers on any existing or emerging channels and devices. Covering all of the reasons why your business needs a modern CMS will require an entire blog post. So let’s just take a look at the top ones:

Security and compliance concerns
Privacy and data security are always a top priority for any business or organization. Over the years, legacy content management systems have proven to be less secure as hackers can easily enter the back end of the admin portal. This is mainly due to third-party integrations and the inherent lack of flexibility in legacy content management systems. A modern CMS, however, is far less vulnerable to these threats as it’s designed with data safety and security at the forefront using more secure, firewalled APIs. Its sophisticated architecture and highly extensible framework with pre-built connectors ensure secure third-party integrations and secure storage of users’ sensitive data.  

Scalability issues
Another major issue with legacy CMS has to do with scalability. Its outdated, tightly coupled architecture makes upgrades both frustrating and expensive. Just as an example, boosting site performance could require spending more on hosting or ramping up hardware infrastructure. 

On the contrary, a modern CMS is built with scalability in mind so it can grow with your business. The fact that the backend and frontend are decoupled makes it easier to add changes and make updates without needing to redesign the whole system. Keep in mind that your CMS needs to scale with your business without breaking your back or the bank.

The need for omnichannel delivery
Omnichannel delivery is now a consideration of strategic importance. Legacy CMS is designed to deliver single-channel web content and lacks omnichannel capabilities. Creating a new experience means more complexity, more servers that need to be administrated, and more back-end coding. Modern CMS, on the other hand, supports omnichannel initiatives efficiently thanks to its API-driven architecture and allows for content to be distributed at any time across different channels, devices, and platforms.

Costly and complicated integrations
Modern CMS offers better and much more personalization options, one of the major ways it does that is through extensive integration possibilities. Its flexible, microservices-based architecture allows it to seamlessly integrate with all other enterprise software like CRM and ERP to create a platform with practically endless functionality.

When it comes to legacy CMS,  integration with third-party services can be costly, difficult, and time-consuming. This is mainly due to its heavy, complex pre-built connectors.

Speed issues
We can't talk about the benefits of using a modern CMS without mentioning its performance. With a legacy CMS, building, deploying, and implementing new websites can take from 9 to 12 months, whilst the front-end agnostic approach of the modern CMS cuts that time down to 90 days or less. Not to mention that websites built with a modern CMS are generally faster and they provide a better user experience.

How using Redakt makes content management more effective and content managers more productive.

So we've seen some of the major reasons why implementing a CMS that's both modern and future-proof is paramount to your business content marketing success. Now you might be wondering, what’s the best CMS with such characteristics? Well, allow us to introduce Redakt. A modern, flexible, fully customizable, and future-proof CMS that we strongly believe is going to revolutionize the landscape of content management.

What makes Redakt a modern CMS? The answer is its hybrid architecture. This blog post will give you a detailed explanation of why a hybrid CMS is the best choice for your business in terms of security, compliance, scalability, cost-effectiveness, fast performance, etc.

Redakt’s back-office is optimized for marketers and content managers since those are the individuals who use a CMS on a daily basis. We made sure its interface is fully customizable, clean, intuitive, and clutter-free with no steep learning curve required. 

Redakt works with some of the fastest and highly scalable databases out-of-the-box, Azure Cosmos DB and Mongo DB are just a few examples. Content fields and models can be tailored as needed, from simple text fields to complex nested content structures and tables. fields can be organized into clear sections, and their layout can be personalized. Tooltips and help texts can be added to fields, aiding content managers with tips & guidelines. This ensures a much more user-friendly experience, better control, and improved productivity.

Unlike many content management systems that require paid addons or modules for certain features, Redakt offers all those enterprise content management features out-of-the-box. You can also incorporate other business processes into the same interface, and aggregate all your business data from different systems into Redakt as well as using one single login for all users. This will ease your mind from worrying about additional implementation or compatibility issues.

Do you know what makes Redakt future-proof? It’s the cutting-edge Microsoft .NET 5.0 (previously .NET Core) technology that it’s built upon. And it’s the first enterprise-grade content management system to be built from the ground up on such future-proof technology.

The .NET 5.0 framework allows for cross-platform deployments, faster performance (more details on that in this blog post), high-performance scalable systems, more efficient site development and management, and easier integration with both existing and emerging technologies like the latest tools and libraries. This offers more customization options that make content management easier and more effective.

We know that a fast, high-performing CMS is a content manager’s best friend. That’s why we invite you to try Redakt for yourself and see how it can simplify your workflow and content management processes from the get-go. With Redakt, you can take your content management to the next level and deliver better and more personalized digital experiences.

Book a demo here so you can explore all of that and more.

Wrapping up

Content is a paramount business asset and it’s at the core of every engaging customer experience. This makes content management a crucial and core component of any marketing strategy. However, your content management strategy can only be as effective as your CMS allows it to be.

Content management systems with slow and sophisticated back-ends only frustrate your content managers and negatively affect your content marketing output. By choosing Redakt as your CMS, you can rest assured that your content managers are satisfied and that their content management efforts will drive the desired results.

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