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  • Writer's pictureMaïté Verhoeven

6 steps to becoming an agile content creator


Agile board

Embark on a transformative journey with me into the world of agile content creation. Two years ago, I began this journey, transforming my content production to be more efficient, results-driven and enjoyable.


Content creators often face overwhelming challenges such as regularly generating new ideas, managing time constraints, maintaining consistency between various pieces, and battling low conversion rates.


My quest for solutions led me to the dynamic world of agile content marketing, a methodology that differs significantly from traditional content creation processes.


Don't panic, it's easier than you think 😉!

I hope this 6-step method will give you a new perspective and help you plan your content agilely in the future.


Step 1 - Define your target audience


Know your strategic vision first


Before you write a single line, shoot a single video or plan a single post, make sure your management (or your client, if you're a freelancer) has given you a clear vision of what they want to achieve with a content marketing strategy. You don't make content just to make content, as still happens.


Do you need to increase brand awareness? Promote engagement to generate leads? Increase sales by boosting conversions? Extend promotion to a new target? Develop a new communication channel?


This information is essential. It will help you define your target audience and how you want them to interact with your content.

It may seem obvious, but many online sites still treat their audiences as homogenous groups.


Understand your target audience


Once you've identified your target audience, try to answer the following questions with the data at your disposal (if you haven't received it, don't hesitate to ask):


Crowded place
  • What are their interests ? This answer will enable you, for example, to link your messages to their passions and hobbies.

  • What do they need to know ? Need educational content about your brand's environment? Need to know about your company? Need reassurance?

  • Where do they consume content ? Blog ? Which social media ? Specific websites ? Forum ? Email ?

  • What type(s) of content do they consume ? Articles ? Videos ? Podcasts ? Influencers ? Peer recommendations ?

  • What do they want from you, your brand, your company ? Transparency? Loyalty? Personalized relationships? Social, humanitarian and ecological commitments ? Research and innovation ?

You don't need 100% certainty for every question. As Colin Powell, the former US Secretary of State, would say, to make a successful decision, you need at least 40% and at most 70% of the information. Then follow your instincts 😊.


Business expertise and value-added content are always more interesting than purely advertising content.

One of the objectives of your content marketing is to create a relationship of trust with your target audience. So make sure you understand them and, above all, provide them with content that will help them achieve their objectives.


Step 2 - Define your agile KPIs


Defining performance indicators is essential for measuring the success of a campaign. And yet, it remains poorly formalized in content plans. I've often come across clients who were satisfied with the number of views and likes to tell themselves that their content was relevant and met their target.


That would be too simple! After all, the number of views, impressions and likes don't earn you a single euro! They're increasingly being dubbed "vanity metrics", because they're enough for the ego, but not enough to guarantee satisfactory economic results.


Defining relevant performance indicators enables you to determine the success or otherwise of your content campaign, right from the initial test phase. They will then serve as benchmarks for future campaigns, measuring progress over time.


What performance indicators can help you determine whether your campaign is successful?


Here are just a few examples:


  • Organic traffic: increase in non-paid traffic to your website.

  • Reading/viewing time: measures your target audience's interest in your content.

  • Bounce rate: measures the relevance of your information to your target audience's expectations.

  • Brand mentions: the number of times your brand is mentioned on social networks, measuring its visibility and reach.

  • Conversion rate: registrations, purchases, subscriptions.

  • Retention rate: number of visitors who return to your content platforms.

Step 3 - Collaborative strategy is a must


Involve a broad team from the outset. Include product managers, communications experts, sales teams and technical staff to align your content strategy.


By working together from the outset, this group can define an aligned content marketing strategy. It will then be much simpler for content creators to deliver agilely.


The points to be discussed together could be :


  • Why is our brand unique?

  • What is our brand's mission?

  • What benefits and solutions can we offer our prospects/customers?

  • What are the relevant keywords to clearly express your content strategy?

  • How do our existing customers talk about our brand?

  • What are the most relevant performance indicators for a successful campaign?

  • How do you quantify failure, the need to iterate or not?

The Agile method is not confined to the 4 walls of a company. It also involves external stakeholders in the process. These may be customers or prospects belonging to the target audience. Invite them to project progress meetings, ask them for feedback, let them know what's going to happen next. They're your best validation that you're sailing in the right direction.


Step 4 - Select the RIGHT messages


Once your objectives have been defined, validated and shared with all the stakeholders involved in content marketing, it's time to work on the messages.

In the agile approach, the aim is not to plan and create fixed content.


Messages are tested first, as are their distribution channels. These tests can be carried out on a small scale to begin with. A/B testing is an interesting methodology here.

As a reminder, A/B testing involves testing the effectiveness of different versions of an element. In content marketing, this may involve different visuals, different messages, different editorial styles, but also different audiences. By displaying two versions of an element (version A and version B), we can measure the performance of each in terms of consideration, engagement, conversion rate or other chosen key performance indicators.


The most important thing is to vary only one parameter at a time. Otherwise, you won't be able to attribute the success or failure of a test to a single parameter.


Step 5 - Break down your content campaign into sprints


An agile approach to content marketing involves the creation of a set of sprints. These are short periods of time during which specific objectives are achieved.


Each sprint is followed by a reflection on what went well, what could have been executed better and how to improve for the next sprint. Always with the objectives, strategy and KPIs defined as the basis for evaluation.


When you start your campaign, I recommend that you break down your content creation into smaller pieces, "slicing the elephant". If you produce a document that's too big the first time and it has to be reworked, all your efforts will have been in vain!


Smaller items of content give you greater flexibility. For example, you can quickly update a specific article on your website, or a video, or a newsletter, if they've been released and tested individually. What's more, your audience will have more opportunities to interact with your content and give you feedback on each piece separately. And to take it into account for subsequent pieces of content.

So the sprint process allows you to make progress, step by step, but quickly.


Step 6 - Adopt the right agile content marketing tools


As we've seen, an agile content marketing campaign creates and distributes content in short cycles. So you need tools that make it easy to create and analyze your performance in real time to assess the impact of your sprints.


Here's a list of some of the tools I personally use (or have used):


  • 📅Content planning tools : Buffer, SocialBee, Hootsuite. Some social networks now allow you to do this in your own system.

  • 💡Source of inspiration : Answer the public, Google trends, Perfect Post

  • 🧠Content creation AI tools : Copy ai, Jasper

  • 🎨 Visuals: Canva

  • 🚀Performance analysis: Google Analytics, Ubbersuggest

  • 📣Content curation: Feedly, The Old Reader

  • 📡Competitive intelligence: Ubbersuggest, SimilarWeb

  • 🎙Podcast creation, hosting and performance analysis : Buzzsprout, Audacity

  • 🎬Creation and analysis of video performance: Capcut, YouTube Studio, Camtasia

To manage your project with other team members, there are several collaborative tools available, such as Asana, Trello and Monday.com.


My final word


With the explosion of content marketing, it's more important than ever to understand how to use agile methodology in your content creation.


Your editorial calendar is a key element in moving your content marketing into agile mode, as well as identifying and assigning roles to your team members. You need to know when to solicit ideas from others and when to be open to outside contributions.


If you understand how the agile method works on an editorial level, your content marketing will go from "good enough for today" to extraordinary🤩!


And you, what step(s) are you thinking of integrating or optimizing in the way you develop your content marketing?


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