7 Ways Small Marketing Teams Can See Big Results
If your company has a small marketing team, you’re not alone. In a 2022 survey of marketing professionals, 36% said their content marketing teams consisted of three people or fewer. Yet small marketing teams are not destined for small results. Read on for seven ways your small team can make a big impact.
1. Start with a Content Strategy
Having a content strategy helps keep small marketing teams focused on what matters most and what yields the best results.
Your content strategy should be a documented plan covering idea generation, creation and delivery of your organization’s content — from blogs, webinars, emails and social media to conferences, press releases and videos. It spells out who creates what content when and sets guidelines to follow, so your content brand is unified and consistent.
This may seem like a large task for a few people, but committing the time upfront to develop a content strategy will save time, money and resources down the road.
Small Marketing Team Tip: How to Develop a Content Strategy
To start building your content strategy, follow these steps:
- Conduct a competitive audit. Make a list of your competitors and their content marketing efforts. What can you learn from them, and what are your advantages?
- Conduct an internal content audit. What content do you have, and how is it performing? What holes can you fill?
- Create audience personas. This will help you visualize your audience and understand what they need and how you can deliver it.
- Set goals for your content program. Define what you plan to achieve and how you’ll measure it. Make sure your goals align with your organization’s business goals.
- Set a measurement framework for your content. Your framework specifies the metrics you’ll track and how often you’ll review them. Consider how much time is needed to see results, and be ready to pivot as needed.
- Create your content plan. A good plan helps you turn strategy into action.
2. Conduct a Competitive Audit
A competitive audit doesn’t have to take a lot of time, but it can create a lot of value. That’s a win for small marketing teams!
With some targeted internet searching, you can discover what products and services competitors in your space are offering and how they are marketing them. (If you’re willing to make an investment, you can get even more in-depth data using a competitive analysis tool.)
Pay close attention to competitors that are highly visible online. What are they doing that you aren’t? Where are they succeeding? How can you replicate their success?
While you don’t want to be a copycat, you do want to be sure that you at least match your competitors in key content and, better yet, exceed them.
By auditing your competitors, you’re likely to identify some gaps in your own content offerings. This is a great way to speed up your team’s idea-generation process.
3. Conduct a Content Audit
A content audit is a key component of a content strategy, and it’s especially important for small marketing teams. The audit will help you determine how to spend your limited time by identifying gaps in your current content library.
For best results, conduct a content audit annually or whenever you’re building a new content strategy or undertaking a website redesign. Start by identifying all your content (this could include blog posts, product or service descriptions, press releases, white papers and social media posts), and assess it based on a few critical criteria:
This process will not only help you optimize your new content but will also help you find opportunities to repurpose or refresh existing content.
Small Marketing Team Tip: Republish Content
Your content audit should help you identify content that is still relevant but is underperforming — either because it lacks SEO value or is just too old. Republishing these articles by adding updated information or keywords and meta descriptions can breathe new life into old content with minimal time and effort.
As you would with new content, make a plan to promote republished content. It’s SEO best practice to retain the same URL when republishing articles.
4. Repurpose Content
You don’t need to burn your team’s precious time reinventing the wheel. Repurposing content is a great way to maximize efficiency.
When planning new content, consider all the ways you could use it at the outset, so you don’t have to reinterview, rerecord or rewrite. For example, if you’re recording a podcast on a timely topic, could you also capture video to use in social media posts and write a blog post profiling your podcast guest? If it’s a seasonal topic, could you update it and republish it next year?
Gather all your media and information up front to give yourself the most options.
5. Create a Content Calendar
You might be seeing a trend here, but planning is one of the best ways to boost a small team’s efficiency. Building a content calendar will help focus your team’s efforts and take the guesswork out of what to write, produce or record. The calendar can capture content across platforms (like a company blog, email marketing and social media), track campaigns and projects and enable collaboration.
A good content calendar ties content to your overall business goals. Use your business plan to inform your content calendar. Is a new product launching in the third quarter? Be sure to plan content around it. Hosting an event in October? You’ll need content to drive attendance.
6. Leverage User-generated Content
Your marketing team doesn’t have to be the sole content creators. Users — such as your members, staff, customers and clients — can be content creators, too. Look for easy opportunities to supplement your small team’s output with testimonials, guest posts and users interviews. This is called user-generated content. Including voices from the community has the added benefit of lending authenticity and credibility to your message.
To find potential user-generated content, be on the lookout for people who tag your brand in favorable social media posts. You can also spur user-generated content with contests or campaigns that invite consumer participation.
7. Utilize AI Tools
Small marketing teams can feel stretched thin by the daily grind of content marketing. Artificial intelligence (AI) can help. There are thousands of AI tools that can add automation to your workflows. In addition to helping your team work more efficiently, AI tools can also make your marketing efforts more precise.
For example, AI can look at users’ engagement history and recommend content that has the best chance of success. You can also use AI to improve the user experience with dynamic content tailored to a user’s interests or a chatbot that allows users to easily communicate with your company.
When considering AI, be sure to do your research. Not every task is best left to a robot. But you can scale several content marketing tasks with AI to make a big impact with few resources.
Learn about the risks and rewards of AI-created content in our webinar Rise of the Machines: How AI Is Pushing the Limits of Content Generation
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