Remote teamwork can be a limitation and an opportunity. Managing content production with remote teams is not an exception. A limitation scenario is associated with chaotic management and tons of content waste. But if you choose to thrive on the situation and take the opportunity angle of view, you need to first reflect on two questions:

  • Whether your content strategy works for you, not against you (you do have a content strategy, not just some sketchy intuitive content plan, don’t you?...)
  • Whether your understanding of remote teamwork is limited to gathering everyone in Slack or Trello only, or do you put the integrity of processes first?

Let’s Start with a Content Strategy

If you have a seemingly perfect content plan but no prior content strategy, or if you think that content plan actually constitutes your content strategy, you should probably reconsider these things as soon as possible and revise the basics.

Content strategy is the opposite of the “I just feel it this way” approach or “Let’s just try and see” attitude. It provides clear reasoning for each point of your content plan, adds a sense of direction, and lowers the risk of useless efforts from your side. So, the content strategy does not equal the content plan – these notions are not used interchangeably.

Make sure you navigate core terms and use them for your content strategy

#1 - Customer Journey Map

Content strategy starts with visualization. What journey will your customer undertake as they engage with your product or service? Your customer journey map should be based on concrete observations, feedback, or research, rather than hastily brainstormed assumptions.

Remember that other stakeholders, including your competitors, should also be there, along with all the parties involved. The more “maneuvers” and scenarios you consider, the closer you will get to your customer, their needs, pains, and aspirations. This will allow you to lead them faster to your product.

It may all sound baffling at first, but as soon as you install your first customer journey mapping tool, you will find yourself completely involved in this adventurous process with no desire to step back.

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#2 - Levels of Customer Awareness

The stages of the customer journey define the levels of their awareness of your product. Customers awareness can be of 5 levels, and each one deserves your attention:

Level 1 - Unaware

Level 2 - Problem-Aware

Level 3 - Solution-Aware

Level 4 - Product-Aware

Level 5 - Most Aware

Guess what levels produce the most converts? The last three, of course – represent that precious bottom of the awareness funnel. However, a funnel concept may be misleading, creating a false impression that all the efforts should be channeled to the fruitful “bottom” only.

The critical point is that your content should cover all the awareness levels so that you could hook those who may not know who you are and why they need you and do necessary tracking and adjust your initial strategy according to the updated feedback and behavior patterns.

You may think that you know your customers well, but be sure they can surprise you. So, apart from targeting the most-aware, product and solution-aware levels (to keep the customer acquisition process running smoothly), it makes sense to produce specific content as if the audience does not know you. In this way, you will move up the funnel and reach earlier level customers.

#3 – Content Distribution Tips

You should think twice about what channels to use for your distribution content (content for social media, blogs, industry websites). The platforms you will choose should gather an audience from the same communities, people with the same values. In other words, they should reach people who are right for you,  who will be receptive to your message, and who will want to sign up for your updates.

Mind that there should be at least ten pieces of corresponding distribution content for each part of the core content.

Ok, but how to manage it all with a remote team?

The first thing that comes to mind as you plan to work with freelancers and remote team members is that you need to equip yourself with the task manager starter pack – Trello, Slack, Google Docs, and other tools, and then everything will just go with the flow.

However, relying on technology will hardly be enough unless you invest your time setting up the core processes.

Checklist for Your Teamwork Self-ssessment

#1 – Define your content production workflow.

What series of tasks will translate your ideas into consciously distributed content? Making a brief, creating pitches, crafting the draft, defining topics, doing research, writing, editing, finding visuals, reviewing, revising, uploading, user testing, publishing, tracking, rewriting content for guest posts...Do not limit yourself to these steps, but define those that will be clockwork for your team.

#2 – Ensure you have all the necessary contributors with specific proficiency for each task and use only trusted platforms to search for freelancers.

#3 – Needless to say that there should be enough space for transparent communication but no place for micromanagement.

#4 – Think of steps where a bus factor situation is most likely to occur.

You should know how to redistribute your human resources to keep your conveyor-process running smoothly.

#5 - Clearly articulate duties and expectations.

#6 - Make sure tasks and other information (such as style guides) are easily accessible.

Trello boards and cards work best here.

#7 - Articulate writing ethics rules with your team.

Content plagiarising, lack of references if you use someone’s experience, biased language, sources with doubtful credibility – this is not what will add value to your content. Even a perfect content strategy will go down the drain in this case.

The way you organize your teamwork at the very beginning will predefine the quality of content you produce and the work-life balance of the whole remote team, so your efforts will be rewarded anyway.

Conclusion

As you can see, working remotely may not constitute a limitation in your content production, as long as you configure the processes correctly and stay flexible. Double-check your marketing strategy (or make it from scratch wisely), figure out the workflow that works best for you, maintain the necessary tracking and adjustments, and manage clear and transparent communication with your team.

In this way, you will take the most potential out of your contributors and turn this quest of content production into the zen you and your team deserve.