Scaling smart content across the enterprise

Gretyl Kinsey / Content strategy, Smart contentLeave a Comment

Ripple spreading throughout a pond

Are your content development processes manual, inconsistent, or unable to scale up to meet larger demands? If so, you may be ready to look into a smart content solution. Smart content — or content that’s semantically structured, modular, and flexible — can help increase efficiency in content production.

Some of the benefits of smart content include:

More flexible content delivery. The same source content can be used to produce a variety of content in multiple output formats. And because the content isn’t tied to its formatting, the output can be generated automatically.

Content reuse. With unstructured content, you can copy and paste information, but with smart content, you can reuse the same source content in multiple places by reference. Eliminating the need to maintain multiple copies of information can save your company a lot of cost and time, especially if your content is translated into other languages.

Improved accuracy and consistency. Smart content’s reuse capabilities can eliminate the human error that can happen with copy and paste. And because the content is tagged, you can use technology to validate and enforce its structure. 

Unified brand messaging. With reuse and automated publishing, you can align corporate language and logo usage across all structured content. Streamlining your branding also makes it easier to rebrand in the future — it’s often a matter of switching out a logo or corporate colors in one place. 

 

If your organization is growing (delivering content to new markets or offering new products) or changing (restructuring departments or merging with another company), it may be the right time to scale your smart content solution across the enterprise.

An enterprise content strategy lays out a plan for managing all content processes across your organization. Here are some tips to make that strategy successful:

Start small. It can be challenging and costly to tackle a large-scale content strategy expansion all at once. Starting with a proof of concept or pilot project in one department, then extending that solution to other departments over time, can reduce risk and make the changes more manageable.

Gather metrics. Before you develop an enterprise content strategy, it’s important to know how your customers are using your content, what they’re missing, and what their pain points are. That will give you some direction on how to tag and organize content and define unified terminology for the company. Ripple spreading throughout a pond

Assess the benefits. What are the costs you face now, and what costs will you save if you move into a smart content environment at the enterprise level? What does the return on investment look like?

Garner executive support. You’ll need funds and resources available for your content strategy, especially one that reaches across the enterprise. Proving success during smaller phases can help you get the backup you need from executives on larger ones. 

Collaborate across departments. Because an enterprise content strategy is all about unifying your company’s content processes, it’s important to foster relationships and encourage communication among different groups. This may be challenging if you’ve previously worked in silos, but it’s a critical aspect of change management.

Govern your solution. Content governance is the part of your strategy that outlines how you’ll ensure your new content processes are working and communicate future changes as they come. It helps to set aside some resources for this purpose, such as a person or team whose job it is to keep your enterprise content solution running smoothly. 

 

Are you ready to expand your smart content strategy across the enterprise? Contact us

 

About the Author

Gretyl Kinsey

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Technical Consultant. Content strategy, tech comm, and LearningDITA. Musician, cosplayer, and devourer of delicious desserts.

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