Your Ultimate Content Governance Framework for Enablement

Customer-facing teams are under pressure to produce more content faster. One challenge, amongst many, is that without a content governance strategy, you end up with piles of assets that are off-brand, non-compliant, illegal, or created for one-off situations.

This content wasteland makes it impossible for your sales reps, customer success teams, and others to find the pieces they should be using.

This situation is a horrible waste of time and money!

In this article, we will:

  • Explain what we mean by content governance
  • Discuss why you need this strategy and plan in place
  • Share tips for getting started

And throughout, suggest tools and platforms you may already have or want to consider evaluating to make your content governance work.

 

What is Content Governance?

 

A brief content governance definition

Content governance is a framework, system, set of processes, and tools, to manage the lifecycle of every piece of content created for your customer-facing teams.

It covers every aspect, starting with WHY a piece of content is needed, approving its creation, and storing it where the right audience can use it.

It goes further than that, however.

It sets rules for how often the content should be reviewed, by whom, and even how long the assets are needed.

 

Why do you need Content Governance?

First, for sellers specifically, let’s review a few key statistics.

  • 65% of content developed for sales is never used
  • 26% of marketing budgets are spent on content creation
  • Reps only spend around 33% of their time selling. The rest is spent finding and creating content and performing administrative tasks like updating their CRM.

These statistics show the potential benefits of content governance.

Companies waste time and money creating content that no one uses.

In addition to the wasted time and dollars, consider the legal risk of sharing the wrong content.

Consider the potential negative brand impact on prospects reading outdated messages and no longer reflect who you are as a company.

 

Tips for Getting Started Content Governance

We hope you understand the benefits of content governance at this point.

How do you get started?

 

Determine the benefits of content governance for your business

To determine the usefulness of content governance for your business, bring together the major stakeholders from marketing, product, legal/compliance, sales, enablement, finance, and any others relevant to your business.

Your benefits will likely include the answers we shared about why you need content governance and benefits like:

  • Improved content quality
  • Increased content reuse and ROI
  • Better sales productivity
  • Less risk to the business

What benefits of content governance are you trying to achieve?

 

Tips for this part of the process

Use collaboration tools to manage this process. Consider either Google Docs, SharePoint, or monday.com for collaboration and managing the effort. Meet regularly, but use your collaboration tools, keep ideas flowing and lock down the details in person.

 

Define your content governance process

Create a RACI document that breaks out every stage of the process and the people/teams responsible for that stage, and include what must happen to approve content and what happens when not authorized.

Note: This process can slow down content creation, which is positive when done thoughtfully. Ensure you define a strategy to expedite content approvals as this will be a real need. And failing to have this process will lead to the content governance process falling apart right from the beginning.

Your process should include:

 

Content Creation Process and Standards

 

Content Development ChecklistIn the past, we have set requirements such as:

  • A clear definition of whom (persona or customer) we are creating the content. Is the content for a one-off use case or general usage? Is the information time-limited (e.g., a daily promotion)?
  • Subject matter experts must provide input on the accuracy of the information presented.
  • Text-based content MUST first pass a Grammarly check to avoid embarrassing language issues.
  • Video content must always come with a transcript. We tend to use Otter.ai as it does an excellent job for a reasonable cost.
  • Do you use a standard library of assets created and approved by marketing or design teams for image content? Or do you use a tool like Canva (which we use constantly)?

Use, and extend our checklist (to the right) to consistently follow a content creation process as part of your content governance best practices.

 

Content Approval Process

Ensure you have a tool that supports approval workflows (monday.com, for example). Your approval workflow should include:

  • What information do you need to present to the approvers?
  • Who is the primary approver? Their backup? And their backup?
  • What is the SLA for approvals? In other words, how many hours or days does approval take?
  • What happens if the content is not approved?
Publication and Delivery Process
  • Who needs access, and from where do they need to reach it?
  • Do they need it in the CRM system?
  • In the enablement tools?
  • From the website?
Audits, Reviews, and Time to Live

You should have defined how long the content is valid. If you did, what is the process to take it down when it is no longer helpful?

How often will you review content? Every 90 days?

For the review part of the content governance process, you essentially execute the above steps again.

Note that some of the Enablement systems we cover on our site can automate some content governance best practices and processes. For example:

  • All Enablement vendors on our website support distributing content to the right audience via permissions, tagging, search, and a degree of artificial intelligence.
  • Like Allego and Saleshood, some vendors allow sellers to upload videos demonstrating content usage, so content creators and SMEs can better understand how their insights are received and how they may want to adjust the information and messaging.
  • Showell allows you to set an expiration date for files in the system.
  • Allego goes further. While we do not have access to validate, the team has shared that they have the following capabilities to automate content governance further (we have copied and pasted the following three bullets directly from their response — italicized below)
    • Time-bound “Channel Drops” to drop collections of content to various seller groups on a cadence where materials within the Channel become available sequentially over time to coincide with product launch rollout and training, new rep onboarding, and post-M&A integration of sales groups.
    • Time-bound review cadences that ping specific content team members who own that particular slide in the Allego system (or slides) that it’s time to review
    • Time-bound expirations of content where pieces are auto-archived and available for as many years as needed (from a regulatory perspective)
  • We have yet to identify these capabilities in other vendors and will reach out to each to see how they support governance.

Final Thoughts

We hope we have convinced you of the benefits of content governance for your customer-facing teams and that the content governance best practices and tips have been of value.

Leave a comment and let us know if you have any content governance best practices you want to share.

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