For some odd reason, a content development strategy for digital marketing often takes a backseat when it comes to allocating budgets. But when it comes to preparing the content and making it ready, it’s the first thing in digital marketing that is good to go. Product teams typically and ideally ought to have a dedicated content development team in place to have a sense of how the content would fit into the product in general. Therefore, many digital marketing agencies are evolving and transforming to adopt a ‘content first’ strategy. So it becomes necessary to discuss why product teams ought to have a content designer!
With this mindset, there are content designers ensuring that content is created on a top priority basis with a focus on the user or is user-centric and not at the bottom of the priority list. Increasingly, there have been instances of clients integrating support within their content creation team and the results have been absolutely amazing.
The reasons for including a content designer in the product team?
The more traditional model of working with content writers is researchers doing research, designers designing the thing, copywriters filling in the gaps and finally, the product is launched. Anyone who might think that the traditional model is hackneyed would also think that the model is dispensable.
Rather, if the content is designed first and done right, then there is value to be seen in the form of far more satisfied customers converting to revenue increasing by leaps and bounds.
Basically, a content designer, unlike a copywriter or content writer, in particular, has nothing to do with word count. Content Designers typically are involved in projects from their inception and data and research is used to figure out the specific requirements of users and accordingly create content reflecting what they have found.
Content Designers essentially ensure business needs are fulfilled based on relevancy and usefulness of the content as much as possible to the user.
A content designer would have to be orientated about a business and its users by participating in impromptu meetings, sessions on user research and working intimately with the designer from beginning to end.
Content Designers are dissatisfied or aren’t at their peak levels of performance if they are briefed on an ongoing project. They would not want to work on a template that a designer has created already. Moreover, even after the content has gone live, content designers typically want to continuously iterate content as well.
The worth of a website or digital service is measured by how compelling and relevant its content is. A website could be aesthetically designed but if the content of the website is focused on sales or simply poorly written, then engagement would be poor with high bounce rates.
However, sometimes it’s the task of in-house copywriters with limited or who may be lacking knowledge in digital marketing to create an online copy. Therefore freelance copywriters who aren’t acquainted with the business are inducted at the fag end. What’s even worse, marketers with a different forte of writing press releases and social media posts are utilized as well.
This is usually the case once the design has been approved and there is hardly any scope for answering queries or making any alterations. No wonder it’s a struggle to perform at optimal levels.
If a content designer is an integral part of the team from the get go then that would ensure content is researched thoroughly and is accessible and gets the traffic it deserves.
In all client deliverables, transparency is of utmost importance. Clients expect and will only approve deliverables that are foolproof therefore anything submitted in the interim period with errors with assurances that the final flawless delivery will be made in no time does not meet client expectations. Major issues tend to occur every time user research and content creation are delinked.
During the testing phase if the design that the users are presented with is populated with Lorum Ipsum, expecting an overview of the effectiveness of the product would be difficult.
If the copywriter works independently of the researcher and the designer, the question is whether it’s possible to ensure that no relevant data is lost while interpreting the data or has fallen through the cracks as it were. In other words, the quality of the content coming out the other end of the process may not be as good despite its potential.
When content designers are involved with a broader team, they get to learn about the users in the process and, in turn, speedy delivery of the content can be ensured. In fact, content can be created in tandem or simultaneously with design or even prior to the design creation.
Things actually get a lot simpler for designers as they don’t have to rely on guesswork on organizing content or steer content which isn’t their forte. As a result, the final product can be delivered in no time at all with the content likely to yield results to the client.
Bottom line is products ought to undergo a process of iterative improvement and to that end, teams ought to collaborate with clients. With a content designer as a team member, there is scope for monitoring and improving what has been created. It’s the most effective way of ensuring that the content is in sync with ever-changing user requirements and is useful and effective forever.
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