Welcome to The Content Marketing Module!
And congratulations…. you’ve taken the first step in using a content planning and production workflow solution to improve your connection with prospects and customers.
Use this guide to get the ball rolling and jump-start your experience inside the content marketing module. It’s designed to help account administrators and other team members get started with account set up, team-member onboarding and starting with content planning and creation.
Your Content Strategy
Has your company engaged in a formal content strategy process? If so, it will be easy to understand and see the value of the setup work. If not, no worries. Use this guide. We can also help train your company on all aspects of the application, if you need it. The good news is that the content marketing module was designed to be customized to your existing organizational structures, content strategy and planning/production processes.
Things you should start thinking about if you’re brand new to content marketing and/or have not worked on your content strategy include:
- Which types of content you need to manage/produce
- Which content channels/programs you are working to support
- Which audiences you’re trying to reach (your “personas”)
- What content topics they will find valuable
- Who will produce all of this content (need help? Content writers are built in!)
- The effort and planning required to get it all done
Our Role & Your Mission
Most organizations are still in the process of getting their content marketing program going. The content marketing module was developed, in part, to help you adopt the best practices of proper content strategy, planning and production. Everything you need to be successful with content marketing you’ll find inside the platform. Your mission? As you dig in, think about how best to utilize the content marketing module’s ideation, planning and workflow tools. Then use the content marketing module as a process and accountability tool to keep your team organized, on schedule and on strategy.
Now go create some awesome content….Good luck!
Quick Note on Your New Account
Here are a few recommendations to consider to get the most out of your account from the very beginning:
- Get Yourself Set Up and Acclimated - Set up your personal profile, your content connections and then spend some time with the sample content items we’ve provided on your dashboard.
- Set Up Your Trial Team - We recommend selecting a small group of people that you work closely with, get them on a demo with one of our onboarding specialists and start using The content marketing module as your content planning and production management tool for a couple weeks.
- Set up Your Team Training with Us- We’ll explain anything that seems confusing and help you to start thinking about your basic organizational structures, workflows and content needs. Setup a team training by contacting our Support team.
Where to Start Once You Login…
- Click on the gear icon in the lower left corner of the app.
- Complete the fields in your user settings and upload your avatar
- Click on “save changes”
- Note that phone number and title are required
Next, go to “Content Connections”. These connections are places where you publish your content.
- To set up a connection, click on “+ New Connection” (the modal will slide open)
- Name your connection and select the connection type from the dropdown menu
- Click “save”
You will then be walked through the OAuth setup process where it will ask you permission for us to connect to your account
Next, go to “Content Settings”.
You’ll see “Content Strategy”, “Personas” and Buying Stages”
- First, complete your content publishing guidelines. This is the overall direction that all team members will have for content tone, voice and essentially, how you want your brand to “sound” to external audiences. These guidelines will auto-populate in the Create module whenever you start a new piece of content. (in the Content Editor)
- Next, explain your company’s content strategy in short. What are you trying to achieve with your content marketing program? The answer should be captured here.
- Next, select “Personas” and click on the “+ New Persona” button on the right side
- The modal will pop out from the right where you can then complete your first Customer/Buyer Persona. Give the persona a name (like “Sally CMO”) and write up a description of the persona. Then click “Create Persona”.
- Repeat this process for as many Buyer Personas as you have.
Note: A Buyer Persona is a representation of your ideal customer based on real data about your existing customers. You could have 1, 2, 3 or many types of buyer personas. Your personas will be used in the content you create in the content marketing module, so you can target your content to them.
- Next, click on “Buying Stages” and click on the “+ New Buying Stage” button on the right side
- The modal will pop out from the right where you can then complete your first buying stage. Give the buying stage a name (like “Awareness” or “Purchase”) and write up a description of the buying stage. Then click “Create Buying Stage”.
- Repeat this process for as many Buying Stages as you have.
Note: A Buying Stage is a point in the customer buying process, which describes the journey your customer goes through before they buy your product/service. Typical stages are "awareness", "consideration" and then "purchase". Buying stages will be used in the content you create in the content marketing module, so you can target your content to them.
Next, go to “Account Settings”.
- Click on “upload avatar” and select your logo or other file to represent your company inside the content marketing module. Input your company name under “Account Name” and click on “save changes”.
- All of your team members/collaborators will be listed on this page.
The next thing you should do is click on the “Create” button in the top right corner of the application. You’ll see 4 options populate: “New Idea”, “Content”, “Campaign” and “Calendar Entry”.
- Select “Content”. You’ll see 4 new options populate: “Write Content”, “Get Content Written”, “Import Content” and “Upload Content”.
- Select “Upload Content”. This is where you can bring outside content you have developed into your account. (Word docs, PDFs, TXT files, Pages docs, etc)
Next, go back to the dashboard and click on the “Invite” icon under “Team Members” in the lower right area of the dashboard.
- You’ll see the “Invite Team Members” window pop up where you can submit email addresses for fellow team members at your company who need to be part of your account.
- Once you have their email addresses listed, click on “Send Invitation”. They will receive an email inviting them to join your account.
Next, click on “Plan” in the left navigation area. This takes you to the Plan Module.
You’ll see 4 features/tabs: The “Topic Generator”, “Content Trends”, “Content Prescription” and “Ideas”.
Lets go through the Topic Generator first. This is where you can see what’s trending in Google for a particular keyword phrase, topic or industry. It’s a great way to brainstorm potential content topic ideas.
You’ll see here that I searched for “artificial intelligence”. The Topic Generator then pulls in all recent data from Google to show you keyword phrases related to that general term, phrases that have been searched in the last week.
You can select any of the phrases you like and then click on the grey “Create Idea” button.
The “Create Idea” modal slides open from the right side, where you can then come up with a concept name/title, explain more about what the content piece will be about, add it to a calendar. After you do this, click “save”.
Your fellow team members will then see this content idea on their dashboard of the application and can “like” it or “unlike it”. They can also provide feedback on the idea. Note: they will also receive an email, letting them know a new content idea needs to be reviewed.
All Ideas will populate on the “Active Ideas” screen.
You’ll see when you click on the “+” icon on the far right side, 4 options populate: “Socialize it”, “Write It”, “Edit It” and “Park It”. Here is a bit more detail on each:
- When you select “Socialize It”, you can invite team members to weigh in on the idea.
- When you select “Write It”, this takes the idea and populates it inside the Create Module, where you can then start authoring the piece.
- When you select “Edit It”, this allows you to add information to the Idea.
- “Park It” allows you to save it for a later time in a different area (your Idea “parking lot”)
The above screenshot is what you’ll see next if you select “Write It” on the Active Ideas screen. This is the Content Editor inside the Create Module.
The next feature in the Plan Module is “Content Trends”. You can search for a particular keyword phrase, topic or industry and see what’s been published recently around this phrase/topic/industry, ranked by social shares. It’s a great way to brainstorm potential content topic ideas.
You’ll see here that I searched for “artificial intelligence”.
You can then click on stories that you want to use as inspiration for a new content topic. You can select one story, or multiple stories. Then click on the “Create Idea” button on the right side.
When you do this, the “Create an Idea” modal slides out from the right side.
- Input your content title idea
- Explain your idea in a little more detail
- Assign it to a calendar, if you like
- Invite other collaborators from your team to get their feedback on the idea
- Then click “Save”
- This content idea will then populate on the Active Ideas screen
You can also curate or share a trending industry story directly to your social profiles using this tool.
- Simply search for any keyword phrase, topic or industry and see what’s been published recently around this phrase/topic/industry, ranked by social shares.
- Select a story you’d like to share
- Then click on the red “Share” button
The “Share an Article” modal will slide out from the right side.
- Simply select the social connection you want to publish to
- Add a comment about why you like this article
- Then click on the red “Share” button.
- The article will be published directly to the social profile you selected, along with the comment you added.
The final feature in the Plan Module is the Content Prescription.
This enables you to get a potential “content plan” based on your answers to three questions. Simply complete the form and click “Submit”.
Based on the answers we submitted in this example (B2C, lead generation as a goal and $2K to spend on content writing/month), you’ll see it recommends 4 ebooks or product guides as the best type of content to produce.
If you’d like our writers to produce the content for you, simply click on the blue “Get Content Written” button.
Next to the Create button in the top right corner of the application is the Set Up a Task icon. When you click on it, the Add Task modal slides out from the right. You can create any task for any member of your team.
- Enter the task name
- Enter the start and end dates for the task
- Explain in more detail what the task is
- Assign the task to a calendar and to the appropriate team member
- Add attachments, if needed
- Click on ”Add Task”
Go back to the Create button in the top right corner of the application. Select “Content”.
Select “Write Content”. This is what you choose if you are writing/authoring the content internally (you have a writer at your company/agency that will write the piece).
Begin completing the fields, including the Content Title and the Content Type. Click the gray “Create Content” button.
This will take you to the Content Editor where you can then complete the rest of the fields and write the content piece. You can also invite team members in and set up content tasks. The following fields are shown above:
- Content type
- Due date
- Content destination
- WYSIWYG content editor
You’ll also see the Publishing Guidelines, which will appear at the beginning of every content piece.
When you scroll down the page, you’ll see the following additional fields:
- Related content
- Buying stage
- Meta title tag
- Meta keywords tag
- Meta description tag
These are all fields that you will want to complete. If you have questions regarding the purpose of these fields, contact our Support team.
The last field is for images. You can attach images that you want to use inside the content piece here.
On the right side of the Content Editor is the workflow block and includes an instant messaging/texting component, where all team members involved in the content project can communicate in real time, a Content Tasks section, which enables you to create specific tasks for anyone on your team, and a project history feature, which shows all activity on the specific content project.
You can also invite new collaborators/team members to the project, clicking on the “person +” icon. And when the content draft is ready, you can invite guests/clients in to review the content (for their approval or edits).
When you click on the “person +” icon, the window shown above populates. Simply input the team members email address, and they will receive an email inviting them to the project.
When you want to set up tasks for team members (or yourself), simply click on the “New Task +” icon.
When you click on the “New Task +” icon, the modal shown above slides out from the right side. Complete the fields: task name, start and end dates, task description and reference URL (if needed). You can also assign it to a calendar, if you like. Be sure to assign it to a team member. Then, click the red “Add Task” button. If you need to attach files, you can do that at the bottom of the modal window. (this could be research files, a content brief, client materials, etc)
You can see in the above example how a new task appears in the workflow block. Jane will then receive an email showing she has been assigned a task. She will also see the task appear in her dashboard when she logs in.
You can edit the task by clicking on the pencil icon. You can remove the task by clicking on the trashcan icon.
Above, you can see how the History tab populates changes to the content project.
Going back to the red Create button in the top right corner of the application, lets click on that again. Select “Content”.
Then, click on “Get Content Written”. This is how you order content from our team of writers. We now have content writers built into the application. As you’ll see, it’s very easy to order content. Simply complete the fields in the order form; content type, word count, writer level, number of orders and project deadline.
For “Writer Level”, we offer 4, 5 and 6 star writers. 4 represents a “good” writer, 5 is a “better” writer and 6 represents the “best” writers and are priced accordingly.
Note: We guarantee the quality of the writing no matter what level you select. You can order blog posts, ebooks, white papers, website pages, press releases, social content and a number of other content types.
After you click the grey “Submit and Start Ordering Process” button, you will see the above screen. Input the content title, instructions and select the narrative voice for the content. Then click on the grey “Next Step” button.
You’ll then see the above screen. Select the target audience for the content, the tone of the writing and describe the desired tone of voice. Then click on the grey “Next Step” button.
The last screen in the order form is shown above. You’ll see an overview of the assignment and the total cost. You can then pay for the project using the payment form. (We use Stripe as our payment engine). Once your credit or debit card information is inputted, click on the green “Submit Order” button. Note: ACH/EFT payment options are coming soon.
Once this is completed, the order is processed and an interested writer from our team selects the project. The writer will then begin the work and will communicate questions to you through the application, if needed. (Note: in the near future, we will offer users the ability to select the writer for the project and create a “favorite writer” list)
If you choose to have more than 1 content piece written by our writing team, you will see the above screen appear after you select “submit” from the first order screen. To submit your multiple content titles, you’ll need to download the excel template shown above to your desktop.
Once you have the template on your desktop, open it and input the content titles and any instructions. Then save it to your desktop.
The last step is to upload the excel sheet with your content titles into the content marketing module. You’ll see that in Step 3 shown above. Once it’s uploaded, you can then select “Next Step” and complete the rest of your content order.
To see content orders you have made, click on the “Writing Orders in Process” tab in the Create Module. Then click on the pen/paper icon on the far right side. This will open up the Content Draft & Communication screen.
The Content Draft & Communication screen is shown above. This is where the content draft will populate when it is ready to review. You can also communicate with the writer on the right side. Writer name, image, location and star level is also shown.
Once the content meets your approval, you can download it into a Word or Txt file by clicking on the “Download” button. If you want to move the content to the Content Editor inside the Create module, simply click on the “Transfer” button shown above. You would perform this action if you wanted your internal team to further work on the content and launch/publish it to the appropriate Content Connections (ie. Wordpress, Hubspot, social profiles, etc)
CAMPAIGNS (CREATE MODULE)
Return once again to the red Create button in the top right corner of the application. Click on “Campaign”.
You’ll be taken to the Campaign Editor screen, where you can create any type of marketing campaign for your company/agency/client.
This could be a branding, SEO, awareness, trade show, partner or any other type of campaign.
Note: a campaign is a large-scale marketing event that typically takes place over a series of days, weeks or months and requires many types of content to be produced. The content marketing module enables you to create, organize and manage the content elements of your marketing campaigns.
Simply complete the fields; campaign title, start and end date, campaign type, campaign interval, campaign description and goals.
You can also add company tasks on the right side, the same way you can for content projects. Add collaborators/team members to the campaign using the “People +” icon.
You can also assign various content pieces to the campaign, if they have already been created. This enables you to keep all content organized for the campaign.
After you’ve completed the fields, click on the “save” button.
To see all of your campaigns, click on the “Campaigns” tab in the Create Module. You’ll see two buckets of campaigns, those that are currently active and those you are still preparing.
Once again, click on the red Create button in the top right corner of the application. This time, select “Calendar Entry”.
You’ll be taken to the Calendar Module, where a monthly calendar will populate, as shown above. To manually add a task, idea or content piece to a specific date, place your cursor over the lower right corner of the calendar date and click on the “+” icon. You’ll see a dropdown appear below the icon. Select “Add Task”, “Add Idea” or “Add Content”.
The modal shown above slides open when you select “Add Task”.
The modal shown above slides open when you select “Add Idea”.
The modal shown above slides open when you select “Add Content”.
You can filter the calendar by clicking on the funnel icon. Once you do, the filter calendar modal will slide out from the right side. You can filter out tasks, ideas, types of content, authors, etc. Simply make your selection and click on the grey “Apply Filters” button. When you do this, the calendar will re-populate with only the items you kept.
You can save this selection as a new calendar by clicking on the white button shown above.
To create a new calendar, click on the small calendar icon shown above. When you do this, the modal will slide out from the right side. Enter a name for the calendar and the visible content types you would like to appear on the calendar. You can choose a calendar color and invite team members in as well. When finished, click on the grey “Create Calendar” button.
To see more detail for a calendar entry, click on the appropriate entry and you’ll see additional details populate which could include the author, due date, content title, idea, assignee and other information.
To see your marketing campaigns in calendar view, click on the “Campaigns” tab in the Calendar module. You’ll see your campaigns listed over the weeks/months as shown above. This is a great way to see all current campaigns in one view.
The final module is the “Collaborate” module.
This is where you can search for industry influencers and invite them into content projects to co-author and/or co-promote your content. Simply type in any industry or keyword phrase and click on “search”. You’ll see a list of influencers populate, ranked by the number of Twitter followers they have.
To connect with an influencer, simply click on the “Profile” button and you will be taken to their Twitter profile where you can invite them to connect and let them know what you are working on to gauge their interest level. Hint: to improve your chances of connection, let them know what you may be able to do for them as well. Influencers are typically inundated with requests for partnership.
You can bookmark influencers by clicking on the star icon to the right of their photo. All of your bookmarked influencers will populate on the “Bookmarked Influencer” screen. Perform this action to help organize your list of influencers and/or connect with them at a later time.
When you click on the grey “profile” button for an influencer, you are taken to their Twitter profile, as shown above. Click on the “Follow” icon. The influencer can then choose whether or not to connect with you.
If you need to search for content, a team member or other item inside your account, simply go to the search box at the very top navigation, input what you’d like to find and hit enter on your keyboard.