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Why Every Marketing Team Needs Content Quality Assurance

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Content Creation Why Every Marketing Team Needs Content Quality Assurance (and What That Looks Like) By Liz Alton on June 3, 2021 For many brands, launching content marketing initiatives sparks a flow of new ideas for agile processes to get content into the market and strategies to help bring the right voices to the table. However, double-checking that the content is working effectively tends to linger as an afterthought. As brands work to find new ways to differentiate themselves from the competition, content quality assurance (QA) is critical. In a recent survey conducted by Skyword, 73 percent of brands indicated that they’re likely to rely more heavily on freelancers in the next two years—and scaling your external collaboration means getting everyone on the same page about expectations and requirements. Is quality assurance the missing step in your content creation process? Defining Quality Assurance It’s one thing to say that a brand’s content marketing initiatives need quality assurance; it’s another to make sure all stakeholders agree on what that means. While there’s no single definition of quality content, chances are some of the following pain points hit home. Does quality mean: Hitting deadlines and publishing regularly? Putting pieces through a proofreading process? Developing strong, differentiated topics? Following specific data and sourcing guidelines? Aligning with brand voice? Challenges to meeting these elements of a successful content strategy will vary across brands, content types, and the creators involved. For example, while 81 percent of brand marketers in the Skyword survey note they’re happy with the quality of their content, 23 percent of marketers are weighed down with the burden of revising content themselves. QA may involve providing writers with stronger brand guidelines, building an extra round of revision into the budget, or ensuring an editor reviews all copy. Developing a plan to deliver quality starts with determining your level of available resources. “To right-size budgets, brands must have a clear view of what quality content looks like to them. Suppose deep industry expertise, data sourcing, and search optimization are essential for quality output. In that case, these requirements must be baked into the freelance scope of work or distributed between freelance, internal, and agency resources,” according to the report. Quality assurance finds a comfortable fit as dedicated function within marketing. Skyword’s researchers note that “brands need experienced content craftspeople at the helm who can define quality evaluation criteria, set ground rules for internal reviewers, and consolidate and relay precise feedback to creators efficiently.” Quality Matters on Both Sides of the Table Skyword research explored feedback from brands as well as creators. Quality management was the top concern for 14 percent of brands. Freelancer pain points suggest underlying quality control issues: 33 percent struggle with establishing expectations 30 percent experience a lack of clear and consistent communication 14 percent are challenged with revision requests and scope changes Pulling from both brand and freelance creator pain points in the survey research, it’s clear that brands struggle with the time and effort it takes to […]

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