Where Should Content Sit in a Business? Under Operations
Most businesses lump content under 'Marketing.' That's not where it belongs. Yes, it does involve itself in most marketing campaigns. Websites, email, blogging, ads, etc. But is that all content does for you? Nope, not by a longshot.
Does documentation belong in Marketing? Of course not. Yet it too is content. What about product/service descriptions? Nope, those fall under Engineering or Customer Service.
How quickly the notion of putting content under Marketing falls apart!
Content Props Up Everything
Content needs and must have a central role in your business. Content underpins the company's brand. Its reputation. Its communications (ALL of them).
These elements affect every aspect of the business' operations.
- A sales lead uses content for: moving people through funnels, follow-ups, address objections
- A manager uses content for: communicating with customers, planning projects
- The CEO uses content for: managing the business goals, strategizing from the top
- The bookkeeper uses content for: Explaining financial goals & issues, to team members/investors/partners
- Support staff uses content for: answering customer questions, maintaining good relationships with customers/vendors
Is this all marketing? Nope. It's operations. Every-day, core business operations.
That's where content belongs.
It's not a marketing expense. It's a business asset.
10-Second Guide to Setting Up Content Operations
Okay, so you want to place your content resources where they should go, in Operations. Organizationally speaking, what should you do?
First, designate an "owner" for all company content. This could be a COO (some larger businesses have a CCO), a Content Strategist, a Content Manager, or a VP of Ops.
The content owner directs content as a business asset. Treat it as you do the brand, or your core product/service.
(It helps to think of content as another product. Because it is. I'll talk more about this in another post.)
The content owner should have access to, and authority over, all content-related resources the business has. This includes full-time writers, freelance content marketers, designers, and Marketing team members who work with content.
Don't. Let. Anyone. Frame. Content. As "Just part of Marketing." They cheapen it by doing so, and cause a break between content operation and business day-to-day.
This break manifests itself as poor customer reception, low-performance websites, communication problems, or even product/service failure.
No amount of marketing will fix those.